'One Ride' well worth taking
by Holly Tsang
Nov 04, 2010 | 19459 views | 1 1 comments | 798 798 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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(Photo: Queens Theatre in the Park)
“One Ride” by Robert Royston is proof that you don’t have to be a cowboy to love the rodeo. Even the members of an older, born-and-bred-in-Queens audience will find themselves clapping their hands and tapping their feet in time with the sounds of country legend Chris LeDoux - and that is exactly what they did at an opening weekend performance of the premiere dance musical at Queens Theatre in the Park.

The late LeDoux’s band, the Western Underground, pays tribute to LeDoux with live performances of his songs while a video slideshow plays on a large screen, forming a backdrop that serves as the scenery. Dancers are the subjects, re-enacting in movement the stories that were told by LeDoux in song.

Much of LeDoux’s songs seem to focus on love, whether it be the thrill of being in the rodeo ring or the emotion between a man and woman. The songs move from upbeat to mellow between scenes, but every song represents a new story. Each pair of dancers is coupled off and continues to dance together throughout the program’s entirety. “Wife Behind the Cowboy” is a track illustrating the talents of the entire company of dancers, and each step, twist and shimmy is more thrilling and sexy than the last. At the conclusion of this number, the softer side of a cowboy becomes more apparent because you realize that even a gruff, masculine cowboy benefits from the love of a devoted woman.

The slow-moving dance sequences such as during “Silence on the Line,” in which a cowboy telephones his wife after a long stay away from home, tug at viewers’ heartstrings. The audience tastes firsthand both what the cowboy, who has been crippled by a fall in the rodeo ring, and his wife, who has waited for her husband for years, are experiencing. Lead vocalist Lane Turner sings the story well, but there’s no replacement for actually seeing the scene danced out in front of your eyes. Your heart breaks for both the crippled cowboy and his lonely wife.

Royston’s newest masterpiece is aptly named because it’s a reference to the importance of following a dream, of seizing that one opportunity to do something right. That dream for a true cowboy, oftentimes, is to ride that bull and achieve a perfect score in the rodeo ring, despite the risks associated with it.

This show is “One Ride” worth taking even if you’re not a country music fan. Experience each storytelling element - live music, multimedia technology, dance - together and each song will come alive. If that isn’t enough to get your heart racing, look to the young, talented and attractive cast clad in Daisy Duke short shorts and macho cowboy hats.

Queens Theatre in the Park is located in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, directly beside the Queens Museum, the Ice Skating Rink and the Unisphere. Tickets for “One Ride” range from $22 to $40. Remaining show dates and times are as follows:

Thu. Nov 4, 2010 @ 2:00pm

Sat. Nov 6, 2010 @ 2:00pm

Sat. Nov 6, 2010 @ 8:00pm

Sun. Nov 7, 2010 @ 3:00pm
To get more information or to purchase tickets for “One Ride,” visit www.queenstheatre.org or call the box office at 718.760.0064.
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November 22, 2010
Tsang is right in that One Ride was an incredible performance that was enjoyed by all members of the audience ranging from teens to grandparents. The only correction I wish to make is that all of the songs link together one story. It follows one cowboy from his first experience on a horse, through his first rodeo and his marriage. It is an incredible performance and I would recommend it to everyone.