So I get the good-natured poke sometimes…often, actually…that I’m the guy who sees EVERYthing. Well let me tell you folks, it ain’t so. Okay, I probably try and see everything, or at least as much as I can in theatre, and especially at the Ottawa Fringe Festival, even I can’t do it all. And sometimes I can’t even get in, as was the case with last year’s smash hit 6 GUITARS that I totally got sold outted on. I even missed the recent remount because I’m an idiot and can’t read my own schedule! Well, goddammit, Chase Padgett, I wasn’t about to let you continue to make a monkey out of me. He had a new show at this year’s Fringe, and this time I made sure I got myself a ticket.

The celebrated mister Padgett wasn’t alone this time however, teaming up with the fantastic Stacey Hallal for the sketch comedy adventure CHASE AND STACEY PRESENT: JOYRIDE at the Arts Court Theatre. And right from the flashlight-powered intro, you know you’re in for a solid hour of laughs. Both talented musicians as well as comedians, Chase and Stacey deliver ten performers’ worth of merriment, combining sketch with improv, physical comedy and some funky sound design to barrage your senses. The wonderful world of Ribbon Twirling is milked for its considerable humour potential, the inside dirt on Rutabaga advertising is explored…all the classic comedy go-to’s, really. Chase and Stacey hit it all, and they generally hit home runs. Their Improv bits are fantastic, too, and impressively returned to and built upon, woven into the sketch moments with amazing precision.

Chase Padgett and Stacey Hallal, getting their JOYRIDE on (Pic by Andy Batt)
Chase Padgett and Stacey Hallal, getting their JOYRIDE on (Pic by Andy Batt)

JOYRIDE is very aptly named, as it’s a joy from start to finish. I have a hard time imagining the curmudgeon who wouldn’t enjoy this show, but they should immediately visit their younger selves and tell them to lighten the fuck up, because this show is the goods. Let Chase and Stacey show you around their cave of wonders, folks…it’s a magical place. Peace, love and soul,

Kevin Reid

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