Fringe Review: The Life and Times of Victor Biktrakarawitz

A father-turned-gimp, a murdering wife, incestuous siblings and a dwarf drug-dealer dressed as a toddler. reviews a new musical about the traditional family gone horribly wrong


Written and directed by: Esme Baker
Company: Pigeon Incest
Rating: ★★★★☆

Think your family’s normal? Let’s hope so. The Biktrakarawitzes are a very ordinary family, except that father Victor has a dark secret, which when revealed, will shatter the veneer of normality and unleash a series of taboo-defying calamities in which everyone will be entangled. 

Describing itself as a black comedy musical, the show lives up to its claim.  With it’s fair share of murder, incest, dwarf jokes, set to a light-hearted soundtrack including the catchy number ‘I’m a Gimp’, The Life and Times of Victor Biktrakarawitz is sure to entertain – that is, as long as you’re not easily offended.

The musical showcases the talent of writer, director and actress, Esme Baker, whose gutsy writing and resourceful staging (it’s a shoe-box-sized stage) are the backbone of the show. Baker gave an entertaining, versatile performance as Victor and the horny undertaker’s son. Other notable performances came from Kate Bell, who was very amusing as the prim and proper housewife-turned-killer, as well as Zoe Frazer’s tabboo-breaking performance as the frustrated daughter. Meena Daneshyar was convincing as the seemingly innocent rebel daughter, although she mumbled a lot of her lines. If The Big Lebowski, Rocky Horror and Pulp Fiction had an offspring, it might look something a bit like this. Hilarious, quirky and subversive, The Life and Times of Victor Biktrakarawitz is guaranteed to leave you feeling mildly queasy and laughing like the village madman. 

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