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A treasure hunt for theatre gold

Theatre SKAM's third annual bike ride takes audiences for a ride on the Galloping Goose Trail
Theatre SKAM's third-annual Bike Ride takes audiences for a ride on the Galloping Goose Trail— where many surprises and laughs await.

Twelve strangers on bikes meet up at Cecilia Ravine Park on Victoria’s Galloping Goose Trail.

They form a pack and look over a map marked with three Xs.

Cycling off into the sunny evening, they wonder what’s in store for them at each of these locations.

This isn’t a treasure hunt, although what they’ll find will be rewarding. They’re on Theatre SKAM’s third annual Bike Ride and they’re about to enjoy live performances in some of the city’s best, and most unconventional outdoor venues, along a four-kilometre stretch of the Galloping Goose Trail.

Over two weekends in July, Cecilia Ravine Park — located on the Galloping Goose at Burnside Road East — will become the central hub for this four-day event, featuring some of the best and brightest performance artists Victoria has to offer.

“Especially when people come back from their first tour, there’s a real delight in the expressions on people’s faces because they can’t believe how amazing it is,” says Theatre SKAM’s artistic producer, Matthew Payne.

This year’s Ride is bigger and better than ever, offering an array of comedy, fairytales, spoken word, dance, story telling and musical theatre, says Payne. “I’m so delighted with the mix of genres we’re offering this year,” he says.

The audience buys a ticket at the park and sets off on a tour in groups of 12. Each tour will see three performances before returning to the hub. Tours takes about 45 minutes. Audience members can see up to four tours on a single admission (up to 12 shows).

“Some people will feel like they got their money’s worth out of one or two tours,” says Payne. “Some people will want to see it all.”

Running Saturday and Sunday over two weekends, audiences will have the opportunity to see 15 different short productions, some shows running both weekends while others are running one weekend only.

Participating productions include: ASAP Theatre Company (July 9, 10 only) with Stop, exploring your sense of stop and go; Determined Illusions (Milly Mumford featuring Aleisha Kalina and Graham Miles) with London and Sydney’s Picnic, a post-apocalyptic comedy about the trials of love and picnicking in a nuclear fall out zone; Zopyra Theatre (Emma Zabloski) with Beachcombers, what would you be willing to do to get your hands on the goods at Wily Wickley’s Water Shed?; Giggling Iguana Productions (Ian Case) with The Headless Rider of the Galloping Goose, a fun twist on the Headless Horseman by a company that is building on a 12-year history of site-specific work in the region; Gotta Getta Gimmick (Brad L’Ecuyer, Clayton Baraniuk with Sarah Carle) with Such Happy Noises, a musical piece exploring creation in the wilderness, creative solitude and artistic interaction between humans and nature with text and lyrics from the writings of Emily Carr; Head Through Painting (Kathleen Greenfield with Laura Anctil and Kyle Wheeler, live music by Casey Van Wensem and Amy Collins) with Indivisible Flight, a fairytale-inspired story about a little girl and a tramp who meet at the water’s edge and realize that they share a mutual fear of Tarzan swings; Impulse Theatre (Andrew Barrett and Emily Piggford) takes you into a state of limbo. There, you’ll meet a group of blind women who need help to bring their stories to life; Jeremy Loveday, performance poet, with Kindergarten Chemists, a playful and engaging letter to your past told through the story of a young girl with too many questions and a plan to save the world; John G. And T Boehme (July 15 and 16 only) with Sport, performance art where a new sport will be developed for each audience; Launch Pad (Christina Patterson and David Radford) with Dial M for Mermaid or Hook, Line and Stinker, Detective Bulfinch is waist deep in an ocean of myth and mystery as another dead mermaid is found washed ashore; SpeakEasy (Missie Peters with Dave Morris) with SPOKE, an improvised spoken word story based on suggestions from the audience; Powerhouse Performance Company (Izad Etemadi and Stephanie Satore — only at the hub) popping wheelies and singing hot pop tunes, these cool cats will bring you into their furry feline world while parodying Katy Perry songs “Teenage Dream” (Feline Dream) and “I Kissed a Girl” (I licked a dog) among others; Storytellers Michele Hibbins, Shoshana Litman and Cat Thom with Storytelling Adventures, modern folk tales spun with music by two sisters, hear wildflower seeds burst open and secrets divulged by murmuring rocks, and choose which object on a plateful of stories becomes the most amazing tale; and This Is Twisted Theatre (Rod Peter Jr, Theodore Sherman) with Temporal Time Travelling Tours into the Future and the Past Adventures, a time travelling journey through time with trained sherpas into the great safari known as the future.

After the last show, the audiences are welcome to go back to the hub at Cecilia Ravine Park and enjoy live musical entertainment. Each day will have a different performance by Hank Pine, David P Smith or Clay George. “As tours wind down, we wanted a way to bring everyone back together. When people are on cycles waiting together, they really talk about the work they just saw in a way that they don’t with traditional theatre,” Payne says.

The event may sell out. “We can accomodate up to 48 people at a time,” says Payne. “We can’t have 200 people cycling down the Goose all at once.” M


Bike Ride

July 9&10, 16 &17

Cecilia Ravine Park (weather permitting)

Performances starting at 3:30 pm And run every 20 minutes until 6:30 pm

Tickets: $15 adults, $5 children, Kids under 10 are free

Two-day passes are available- $25 Adult, $5 Children

Ticket Rocket Hotline 250 590 6291