Symphonie of the Bicycle

Symphonie of the Bicycle Rating

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Step into the captivating realm of “The Symphonie of the Bicycle,” where the stage comes alive with the stories of two captivating characters, both embodied by the versatile Hew Parham under the direction of Adelaide legend Chris Drummond.

In a masterful tribute, Parham interlaces the narratives of Gino Bartali, the revered Italian cycling legend, and Hew, an embittered soul haunted by the spectre of a childhood rival’s success.

With palpable fervour, Parham breathes life into Bartali’s heroic exploits, recounting his triumphs in the Giro Italia and the Tour de France amidst the tumult of family tragedy and World War II. Through Parham’s portrayal, we witness Bartali’s indomitable spirit as he defies adversity, even clandestinely aiding persecuted Jews under the guise of training rides.

Yet, amidst the grandeur of Bartali’s tale, Hew emerges as a poignant contrast—a solitary figure, adrift in his discontent, until an unexpected encounter with fitness luminary Jake Johnson sets him on a path of self-discovery. As the narrative weaves between their stories, Parham’s performance dazzles, effortlessly shifting between accents and emotions with impeccable timing and boundless charisma.

Simple yet evocative staging, with a lone black stage adorned by a golden bicycle and intermittent props, invites the audience to immerse themselves in the unfolding drama, while the deft interplay of lighting underscores the shifting moods of each character’s journey.

Parham’s comedic prowess shines through, eliciting laughter and engagement from the audience, transforming moments of introspection into shared moments of joy and connection. The performance culminated in a rapturous standing ovation, leaving the audience both entertained and enlightened.

As the curtains draw to a close, Parham’s poignant reflection—”I was so busy trying to be someone else I forgot to be me”—lingers in the air, a poignant reminder of the power of authenticity and the importance of embracing our true selves. “The Symphonie of the Bicycle” entertains and inspires, inviting us to pedal forth on our unique journeys with renewed vigour and purpose.

Symphonie Of The Bicycle is now showing at the Space Theatre in the Adelaide Festival Centre from 14th May to 25th May 2024.

This review also appears on It’s On The House. Check out more reviews at Whats The Show to see what else is on in your town.

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