I have to admit, trying to take in some Fringe shows while also working full time during the days has been really taxing on my body so far this week. I was burnt out to begin with, and now that it’s Thursday, I find I’m struggling more and more. Even that, however, does not detract from how happy I am that I was able to witness the incredible experience that is Sean Reycraft’s One Good Marriage!
Directed by Jessica Rose, this darkly comedic tale of newlyweds Steph and Stewart (in the very capable hands of Becky Shrimpton and Matthew Gin, respectively, who both gave stellar performances) will definitely leave its mark on every viewer’s soul. The show begins with the audience members being part of what we learn to be the couple’s first anniversary celebration. The pair tell the story of how they met, their wedding, their honeymoon, the tragedy that struck in their absence, and what life has been like over the past year. Sometimes taking turns, sometimes speaking at the same time, and often finishing one another’s sentences, the somewhat broken yet very enigmatic couple takes us back and forth through time, each step giving the audience a few more clues as to what happened a year ago, and how they got to be here in this moment with us today, on their first anniversary.
The audience is immediately swept up in the tale being told, as well as in the lives of Steph and Stewart themselves, as they gently yet expertly draw us into their story. On a personal level, this experience hurt my heart a great deal at some points, as my own grief often still feels very raw and close to the surface, but in the end it also felt highly cathartic, as well. Despite the nature of the tragic event being described, there are so many moments of humour and joyful reminiscence throughout that, when the ill-fated details are finally revealed, one can’t help but feel as though we’ve been on this journey with them – sharing in their ever-changing moments of grief and happiness the whole time. There was laughter, there were tears, but above all – there was life.
One Good Marriage is at the Trinity St Paul’s United Church just 6 more times, so get yourself over to the celebration while you can!
Thursday July 09 at 07:30 PM
Friday July 10 at 07:30 PM
Saturday July 11 at 02:00 PM
Saturday July 11 at 07:30 PM
Sunday July 12 at 02:00 PM
Sunday July 12 at 07:30 PM
You can get your tickets here!