Thanks for tuning in…!
It is a long journey to becoming a professional children’s theatre artist. This blog is the transformational tale of Dustin Anderson journey as children’s icon, The Purple Pirate. It is a non direct route of challenges and distractions overcome by perseverance and self discovery.
I have always been creative which is very useful and fun with most things but isn’t always understood. Farah tried to warn me about riding a recumbent to my shows but I had to do learn the hard way. I thought rolling up like this was something that families would really find imaginative…I was mostly met with confusion. “You rode your bicycle here?” “What is that?”
As my desire to lead by example met with my athletic ambition and collided with my nerdy nature (German roots :0) ) I spent much time researching recumbent bicycles. The aerodynamic efficiency really appealed to me. Tandeming really appealed to me…and then I discovered the Back to Back Recumbent tandem! It was love at first sight.
I was invited to perform at the Canada Dance Festival in Ottawa…I believe the first words from my mouth to Farah was “I am performing at the Canada Dance Festival…Let’s ride there!” Farah hesitated a little, looked at a map and said yes. What an amazing woman.
We called the tour, The 5000 for Health. Cycling 5000 kilometres from Vancouver to Ottawa promoting active living and healthy lifestyles. We spent several months making phone calls, sewing, connecting with sponsors, doing photo shoots and even training a little. I connected with a bike builder and he sponsored the bike to us. He was in England, The bike was in the US and in pieces. It was a character building challenge to get the bike ready to ride.
We scheduled to leave April 1st from Vancouver. I booked shows in the Kootenays and Farah booked healthy eating workshops along the way as well. A friends child, “El” named the bike “The Banana Boat” because it looked like a 4 metre long banana when we were covered up. I have to laugh at some of my ideas…and smile at the awesome support of my wonderful wife.
It seems a little crazy to do something like this until the dots are connected to my chosen career. It is quite normal to think of this from the perspective of a children’s performer…every person who performs for young audiences should have to pay their dues by riding across Canada at the tail end of winter on a Back to Back recumbent tandem.
April 1st came and we had a parade that lead to Jamaican Pizza Jerk and Chef Bounty made a delicious feast for us. Friends came out in the rain to see us off. It was a little unnerving to start a 2 month trip in the rain but we were covered and had confidence that the rest of Canada wouldn’t be so wet.
This video was taken by our friend Dave as we were heading through Maple Ridge. http://youtu.be/LW7o1FJYJH0
I had to make some adjustments and along the way but got to Hope on time. FYI – Wheel covers on the front wheel can lead to instability so I tore them off in Abbotsford.
The journey begins…and the realisation of another dream about to come to fruition…after overcoming obstacles.