Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Lance - Join Kieran Hodgson for a two wheeled tour of fallen idols, Lycra and just doing it #otl16

From the moment he sprints onto the stage, Kieran Hodgson is bursting with energy. Flitting between characters like gears on a racer, the yellow jerseyed lycra-clad performer relates his bumpy relationship with cycling in general and his childhood hero Lance Armstrong (described as a “disgraced champion cyclist and cancer survivor extraordinaire”) in particular.

Whether outlining his own teenage heroic participation in a 26 mile cycle race with fellow Yorkshire scouts, reading out his fan letter to Lance, or remembering the ups and downs of student life in the zero-wheeled rowing club (defending the unimpeachable Lance), Kieran delivers wry observations, comic caricatures and a pretty good impersonation of a ubiquitous Irish cycling TV commentator.

One particular musical dream sequence had the audience in stitches with multiple connotations to him being lured “down south”! Amidst these musings there’s a lot of pedalling and a smattering of the champion cyclist’s imagined motivational and relationship advice.

Kieran’s revelation that Yorkshire would feature in the 2014 Tour de France offers hope, yet is dramatically tempered by the reality that the joy of cycling has been crushed by his fallen idol, like a bike under a steamroller.

While the energy fades towards the end (like my legs on a Belfast Bike approaching the end of a mile long cycle), the laughs were pretty constant, along with a stark reminder not to set heroes up on pedestals in case their steroid-filled thighs are made of clay and they’re slowing you down.

As Lance would say “just do it” and go along to the repeat performance of Lance at 8pm tonight in the Black Box as part of the 2016 Out To Lunch Arts Festival.

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