An easy way to sum up "Ride" would be to call it a coming of age story for three young women who take a spontaneous road trip.
But the play, written by Eric Lane and which is now on stage at None Too Fragile Theater in Akron, which follows Molly (Rachel Roberts), Carrie (Alanna Romansky), and Carrie's 11-year-old sister Sam (Hudson Middle School student Ireland Derry) as they take a road trip over several days, is both a physical and mental journey. "Ride" is directed by Sean Derry. Each actress brings a lot of heart to her character, and the threesome work seemlessly together.
When Molly, who has been going through some issues with her father, receives a new car, she talks Carrie into going on a trip. Carrie agrees and brings Sam with her -- not realizing at first how long that trip is going to be. Carrie and Molly leave their job selling vegetables on the road behind, and using Sam as a sort of human GPS, navigate to their destination. They dodge phone calls from anxious parents, worry about having enough money to continue, bicker and challenge each other. In the end, their shared experiences form a bond that even distance won't break.
This play takes its audience on a wonderful journey as well. There are many laughs, especially from Carrie and Sam spatting as only sisters can, and the precocious Sam's childlike yet mature observations. Molly thinks she knows where she wants to go, but doesn't seem sure until the end on what to do after she reaches her destination. The ending is bittersweet, as the three bond but realize that their lives have forever changed in many ways.
"Ride" runs through Aug. 30. The None Too Fragile Theater is at 1835 Merriman Road, right next to Pub Bricco. For details, visit www.nonetoofragile.com.
The theater will next stage "Sunset Limited" by Cormac McCarthy from Sept. 12 through 27.