More than any other play, I would constantly hear Two Kind Boys’ Rideshares and Rope Swings mentioned by avid Fringe goers as one of their favourite shows of Fringe 2016. Hardly a day went that I didn’t see a tweet in praise of Matt Hertendy and Zoe Towne’s performance. Needless to say, I was walking in with some pretty high expectations.
Hertendy and Towne do not disappoint.
Together, they address some of the bigger questions in life: where does one draw the line between reasonable and unreasonable fears, how do you judge a person’s right to sorrow, and how do you pass the time during a 16 hour rideshare with a complete stranger?
Called for their own reasons to Thunder Bay, Genevieve (Towne) and Reid (Hertendy) find
themselves as travelling companions. However, what started simply as a means of sharing the costs of travelling soon becomes something much more profound as they start to learn more about each other: Reid, an easily distracted and hilariously awkward young man whose view on life and death are coloured by his worries and inexperience, and Genevieve, the typically cool headed and worldly driver whose philosophy is to throw caution to the wind and embrace life.
The chemistry between their two characters, the nervous and quirky Reid (Hertendy) and the cool-headed and worldly Genevieve (Towne), is perfect. Your sides will split during their awkward first encounters and, later, Reid’s “unique” comments and overshares, but this world is not without its sorrows as well, its rage and pettiness, but Towne and Hertendy meet this range of emotion head on in a truly stirring performance.
Throw in some very simple (but extremely clever and versatile) props and lighting effects and it’s like you’re on the road with the two of them yourself.
Personally, it’s also refreshing to see a story that isn’t about fatefully finding your true love by doing something spontaneous. A connection between Towne and Hertendy is certainly built, but it’s this interesting kind of allyship, solidarity in a world that can be unexpectedly and unintentionally cruel.
While Hertendy and Towne’s time at Ottawa Fringe is coming to a close (with one last performance on Sunday!!), they are (oh-so-fittingly) taking Rideshares and Rope Swings on the road, so there are no excuses not see it! This play has received from so much praise from reviewers and tweeters alike; if I may say so, there’s a very good reason for that.
But that’s just what I thought! Feel free to include your own experiences, wonderful or otherwise, in the comment section below.
Friday, June 24 – 10PM
Sunday, June 26 – 6:30PM