A few days ago I heard a radio ad for Biblical Times Dinner Theater in Pigeon Forge, TN, plugging a show that combines gospel music, Bible stories, and…wait for it…Tennessee history.
Surprised by that last one? So was I. In fact, for a second I thought I’d misheard something. But it’s true. You can now eat a meal, enjoy live entertainment, get some religious edification, and learn about the history of the Volunteer State all at the same time:
This show was specially created for those of you who are fans of classic gospel music and who have an interest in the FAITH heritage of East Tennessee. You will meet great heroes of the Bible along with legends of Tennessee who took a stand for God’s Word, from Moses to Billy Graham, Noah to Davy Crockett, Joshua to Sgt. York and enjoy music legends like The Happy Goodmans, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Johnny and June Carter Cash, Elvis and more.
The website’s list of “Legends of Faith from the Bible and East Tennessee” also includes Samuel Doak and Andrew Johnson. All you fellow Rev War and Tennessee frontier enthusiasts will recognize Doak as the Presbyterian minister who preached to the Overmountain Men at Sycamore Shoals before the march that ended at King’s Mountain. Andrew Johnson needs no introduction, although I confess that when I think of great defenders of the faith from Tennessee, he’s not exactly the first guy who comes to my mind.
I’m assuming all these characters somehow figure in the performance, but I’m not sure if cast members actually portray them on stage or if somebody just relates information about them in between the songs. One historical figure who does put in an appearance is the Apostle Paul, because he’s the narrator.
Part of me would pay good money to see Davy Crockett, Sgt. York, and Samuel Doak singing and cutting a rug alongside Moses and Noah, especially if the M.C. is a guy who wrote part of the New Testament. But at this point I think I’ll have to pass on making a reservation. I love Tennessee history, I love the Bible, I love theater, and I love a hearty meal, but I’m not sure I’d like them all at the same time.