Ride The Cyclone - Take 3
The Vancouver run of Ride the Cyclone is coming to an end with a final performance at 8 PM tonight. Then it is off to Whitehorse and then Toronto from November 10 to December 3 for this group of talented performers in this year's run-away hit. I heard that several of the Toronto performances have already sold out so I sent E-nudges to theatre buddies in Toronto to make sure they get their tickets early.
Bursting with curiosity to learn more than I read in the program and from the ridethecyclonemusical website I met with three of the group in between shows to learn a bit more about them. Sarah Jane Pelzer who plays Jane Doe, auditioned for the first workshop over three years ago and has been in the show ever since. Without white makeup and those dark scleral lenses, she is lovely, and totally alive! Elliott Loran who plays Ricky Potts, and the unforgettable Space Age Bachelor Man joined after the first workshop was held. He is as energetic and enthusiastic as Ricky is introverted, and delightful to interview.
Matthew Coulson who plays the tough-talking, ballet dancing Misha Bachinksky is the newest cast member having been with the ensemble for the past three months. He commented on the incredibly strong team work and the other two agreed. Everyone in the ensemble puts out one hundred percent effort to make each person's number work fantastically and the results are obvious - rave reviews for the show. They pointed out that the co-directors Britt Small and Richmond travel with the show, and Small stage manages the show. So it really is the product of teamwork from the original creation to managing props and costumes.
All three studied in Victoria. Elliott and Matthew were both at the Canadian College of Performing Arts: Sarah and Matthew studied at the University of Victoria. Elliott has been playing piano since he was 5; - classical initially and for the last 10 years, jazz. Sarah has been singing since she was thirteen, and is currently on leave from the Conservatory in Toronto, for the run of the show.
I asked where the idea for the story had originally come from. There is still a place in Saskatchewan called Uranium but the roller-caster accident that was located there in the play was invented. What I understood from their responses was that playwright Jacob Richmond has a special talent for observing and creating great characters, as was also seen in the play Legoland. And it appears that there will be a third play forthcoming soon from Richmond's pen- or rather keyboard. So Legoland, Ride the Cyclone and play number three will make up the Uranium Teen Scream Trilogy. So cool.
I asked about the scleral lenses and the makeup for Jane Doe. It is so effective. She told me that it takes about an hour and three-quarters to get ready. And with that it was time for them to prepare for the evening performance. I hoped the remaining houses would be full, and I gather the closing performance is sold-out. Deservedly so.
Oh - and I forgot to add the link to my review of this great show. Here it is.