A Ticket to RIDE - NLT Delivers Another Thought-Provoking Piece
RIDE at the PCL Theatre in the Fringe Theatre Adventure Arts Barns. The production is the latest from Northern Light Theatre and I was looking forward to it. When you see as much theatre as I do, you want to see not only good work but also work that challenges you expectations. I can usually depend on NLT to shake things up - at least in the kinds of scripts they choose. RIDE was no exception. The story begins simply - two people wake up together, naked in bed, after an evening which neither can remember - what follows is not predictable or anticipated. In fact there is a strange but cool surreal quality that slides in and out of the realism created by Director Trevor Schmidt. Schmidt, by the way, is the only person I know in town who can stand by the door to the theatre saying to everyone who goes in: "Read this sign, the whole thing, and do what it says or I will lose my Sh%t." and have everyone laugh and do what he says with good humour. (Based on the sign in question: I think some shows have been plagued with ringing phones and people needing to leave to go pee - which would no doubt ruin the extreme intimate quality of the show). Anyhow, I digress... The Show... It's sad, and real and Cole Humeny and Sereana Malani do a great job zigzagging through the emotions of the awkward situation as they try to reconstruct the forgotten evening. As a whole, the show is more of a commentary on both the emptiness of the casual encounter and the layers of real need and want underneath as people search for closeness with other human beings. It's not about either glorifying or condemning the one-night-stand - it instead seeks to deconstruct it. It does so in a fascinating way. You hope for a happy ending, but although there are many laughs, it is not a romantic comedy - it is exactly those hopes that fuel it.