If you’ve been lucky enough to experience it, you know that Bike Play is a very special thing. Held during Pedalpalooza each year since 2009, Bike Play is is a magical meld of open-air theater, a group bike ride, and public space activism. Created and executed by a cast of professional actors who started as The Working Theater Collective, Bike Play is a bike-themed production that uses public spaces as its backdrops. With minimal props and carrying everything on their bikes, the actors use playgrounds, plazas, and their prodigious talents to bring fun stories to life. The multi-day shows have become a favorite of many Pedalpalooza fans.
One of those fans is BikePortland Events Editor Maritza Arango. She saw this year’s show, dubbed “The Resurrection”, and was so excited she wanted to learn more about the actors behind it and how they put it all together. Earlier this week Maritza caught up with Bike Play producer Noelle Eaton and two other cast members — Kristopher Mahoney-Watson and Nick Fenster — for a fun conversation.
Listen to the episode to hear about the time it rained so hard no one showed up, when Noelle’s hair caught on fire, the one surprising talent it takes to earn a spot on the cast, and why you should always carry a bike light with you when you see the show. There’s even a sweet segment at the end when Kristopher’s dulcet tones serenade us in a solo version of the Bike Play theme song!
And don’t forget to subscribe to the BikePortland Podcast so you don’t miss the next episode (stay tuned for a closer look at the 2030 Bike Plan and an interview with Tom Flood). We’re on Apple, Google, Spotify, and pretty much wherever else you listen.
And if you missed this year’s Bike Play, check out the video below (shot by Kristopher’s dad!):
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