For comedian Ryan Lachance, the dream of touring is about to come true.
The White Rock-based performer will now be able to do shows out of town, thanks to money raised during a “Ramp for Ryan” event May 26 at Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club in Vancouver.
Close to $4,500 was raised at the benefit show, giving Lachance a gift of mobility in the wheelchair he uses due to his cerebral palsy.
The money will be used to buy a portable ramp Lachance needs to access certain comedy venues across Canada.
Tour details are in the works, and some of the money will be used to fix a van for his travels.
“Once the ramps were paid for I was able to use the rest of the money from the fundraiser get my van fixed in order to make sure it is safe to drive when I go on tour,” Lachance wrote in a Facebook post Thursday (June 20).
“I just want to thank everyone once again for participating in the fundraiser and donating. You all have given me the ability to make my dreams come true! I love you all and I can’t thank you enough! Be good to each other.”
For now, Lachance’s website highlights some local shows he’s booked to perform, including one at Elements Casino in Cloverdale on Aug. 3. Other gigs of his are at Hood29 Comedy in Vancouver, an appearance at BlackBerry Festival in Powell River and, in a first for Lachance, a showcase at Vancouver Fringe Festival in early September.
Since birth, Lachance has had to deal with his quadspastic cerebral palsy, which limits the use of all four of his limbs and also his speech.
The self-described “sit-down standup” comedian tells edgy jokes, mostly about himself.
Lachance was born in Winnipeg but soon moved with his family to Leduc, Alberta. He lived there until age 15, when the family made the trip to Surrey to live closer to his grandmother, around the time his father died. To help him laugh a little in the face of grief, an uncle of his gave Lachance some CDs and DVDs featuring comedian Billy Connolly. He’d click on one of the discs every time he needed to cheer up. The jokes made him laugh, alright, and also gave him inspiration to perform comedy for a living.