'A proper night out' with the Hairy Bikers
THE bikes are already revving and raring to go. Simon King and David Myers, aka The Hairy Bikers, are hitting the road to the West Country on their national tour.
The duo are promising "a proper night out" which, in Hairy Bikers' style, may include anything from strip-tombola to a dinner party cooked and hosted live on stage.
The evening, at the Princess Theatre in Torquay, will also include gripping stories from their past and their global travels hunting for authentic food and new cultural experiences – treats they are keen to share with their audiences.
"We hope we're good with people," says Simon, who hails from Newcastle. "We like folk. Folk are generally brilliant."
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And he is really looking forward to performing on stage in Devon.
"A live show gives you instant gratification. When you film, it's always deferred gratification. But when you're performing live, you can say to yourself, 'did they laugh? Yes! Great.' "
David, who lives in Barrow in Furness, is equally thrilled.
"One reason we want to do the stage show is to have that connection with people. When you're filming you don't connect with the audience in the same way. I can't wait!"
The Hairy Bikers have fronted several smash-hit BBC2 programmes. Viewers enjoy their company because they so clearly enjoy each other's company. Their chemistry is completely unforced. Simon says this is because they have been friends for a very long time.
"We were doing trips together long before the cameras were there. There is a lot of integrity to our shows. People relate to us because we're just ordinary fellers," he adds. "We're cooks, not chefs. There is a normality and a familiarity about us. People will have friends like Dave and me."
Dave takes up the theme. "Si and I genuinely are mates. With us, what you see is what you get."
"We've been very lucky in our careers," says Simon.
"We're great enthusiasts, and food and travel are great mediums for that enthusiasm. There's enough cynicism in the world, and if two people refuse to be cynical, that's refreshing."
In addition, people are also drawn to The Hairy Bikers because they speak a globally comprehensible language: food. Dave says: "Food is the biggest common denominator. Wherever you're from, it cuts through class, religion, race and nationality."
The pair are both shocked by and delighted at the success of their tour.
"But we never take anything for granted," said Simon. "We're just grateful that people turn up!"
Dave concludes with a brief summary of the show. "It's going to be really good craic. It'll be like coming out to have a great laugh with Si and me."
You can see the Hairy Bikers: Larger Than Life, at the Princess Theatre, Torquay on Thursday, March 7. Details: 0844 871 3023.