Stacey Hallal and 6 Guitar’s Chase Padgett are throwing a party, and you’re invited! Join them in a musical adventure filled with sketch comedy, improv, dancing and more.
Should you see it?
Chase & Stacey Present: Joyride is an aptly named show. For an hour, these two fantastic performers take you on a hilarious journey and it’s clear that they’re having a blast. Their sketches bring serious laughs but remain short enough to not wear out their welcome. Joyride is more than your average sketch show, though; it’s got music, dancing, uniquely programmed keyboards and top notch improv.
The sketches are silly fun, and make good use of Padgett and Hallal’s boundless energy. However, Joyride really shines in the improvisation. Just based on one simple word – lullaby – Padgett and Hallal created characters that they returned to scene after scene, creating an engaging story every time. Where else are you going to see a window into the lives of a Batman cartoonist and a visual artist who specializes in impersonating inanimate objects as they attempt to raise a child? Padgett and Hallal have a great rapport as they improbably create two compelling characters out of not much at all. I would gladly watch an entire play about these characters and their struggles to be good parents.
Padgett and Hallal’s ability to feed off each other makes for surprisingly heartfelt improv, which was a total surprise for me. Joyride knows how to keep you interested by balancing sketches, improv and song. The energetic pace keeps the laughs flowing and it’s purely delightful to see some characters multiple times. Joyride made me laugh harder than anything I’ve seen yet and left me with a big, goofy smile on my face.
Chase & Stacey Present: Joyride is FUN. Yes, I used all caps right there.
I thought for some reason there would be way more music in this show – similar to Love + Hate’s combination of song and sketch, but after the first number, appropriately called the opening song, there wasn’t any. But there were a lot of laughs. In fact, my face started to hurt from smiling/laughing so much throughout the show – which I don’t think has happened at a Fringe show to this degree since Crush Improv introduced Spotlight On in 2011.
Not sure what else to say. Chase & Stacey play off each other superbly well, they’re obviously rehearsed and polished, and the sketches/improv were well done and largely hilarious. I especially appreciated the returns to continue past bits. (Or the breaking up of longer bits by interspersing them with other bits, if you want to look at it that way.)
The Rutabaga-Farmer sketch was among the highlights as was the largely improvised number that saw Chase & Stacey repeatedly try to challenge the other with things like handstands and reciting sonnets on the fly.
Joyride did something I didn’t think could be done: restored my faith in being able to see first rate sketch comedy at Fringe. (And yes, I know, as with most comedy, your taste and mileage will vary.)
Matthew’s Follow Up:
Chase & Stacey Present: Joyride has a few bumps along the way, but also manages to be very clever and funny at the same time. A sketch show with a slight touch of improvisation isn’t exactly what everyone was expecting from Chase Padgett. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn’t.
The duo start off with a very fun opening musical number that has Chase creating a song on stage using vocal layovers. He’s an amazing musician and from that moment on I really hoped the show would keep up that amount of energy.
Yet, it dips. Once the sketches start, some are really funny, especially one about a rutabaga selling redneck who has a pension for rap and a funny song about going back in time to talk to your future self, a number of the sketches, especially an on-going sketch about two coworkers having sex, rely on cheap humour or punchlines seen a million miles away.
The show does end with a fun ribbon dancing routine, so that’s nice, I guess.
What did you think of Chase & Stacey Present: Joyride? Which sketch was your favorite? What did you think of the improv? Join the discussion in the comments below!
For more information on Chase & Stacey Present: Joyride, including show times and how to get advance tickets, visit the show page on OttawaFringe.com: http://ottawafringe.com/tickets/chase-stacey-present-joyride/