Spider Baby the Musical (AFS entertainment) 2010 Toronto Fringe Review

By Dorianne Emmerton

If you love Rocky Horror, go see Spider Baby the Musical. I happen to love Rocky Horror – and Evil Dead movies and Elvira and all sorts of horror-flavoured kitsch – so I very much enjoyed Spider Baby.

If you didn’t know what you were in for before sitting down in the audience you knew it as soon as the lights came up. The first thing you see is the four female cast members dressed in slinky black slips vamping their way through the opening number. They are sexy and scary in that camp sort of way.

The musical is based on a cult horror film, Spider Baby. The Merrye family is afflicted with a degenerative disorder that causes them to start to mentally regress from about the age of ten until they are blood-lusting savages. The final generation, two girls Virginia and Elizabeth (Katie Aquino, Dominique Cox) and a boy Ralph (Jose Hernandez) are being looked after by their caretaker Bruno (Enrique Acosta, also the writer.) He loves them, and tries to minimize the damage they do in order to protect them.

Onto the scene come a distant relative, Emily, greedy for their property (Tanya Wilkins), her brother Peter (Jesse Atkins), her lawyer Mr. Schlocker (David Clark) and the lawyer’s assistant Ann (Katherine Goldman.) Ann falls for Peter… Unfortunately so does Virginia. Virginia wants to “play spider” with Peter: this is a game that usually ends up with the spider stinging her victim – to death.

The stage wasn’t miked so some of the lyrics were a bit lost, and some of the cast were better singers than they were actors. But who cares – this is fun and games with a lot of blood and sex. For a Fringe show, you can’t get much more Rocky Horroresque than this.

Details

Spider Baby the Musical Venue 1 Tarragon Theatre Mainspace

90 min.
Wed, June 30 10:30 PM – 103
Sat, July 3 5:15 PM – 116
Mon, July 5 8:00 PM – 130
Tue, July 6 3:00 PM – 133
Thu, July 8 Noon – 145
Fri, July 9 8:45 PM – 157
Sun, July 11 5:15 PM – 169

– All individual Fringe tickets are $10 ($5 for FringeKids) at the door (cash only), Online at www.fringetoronto.com, by Phone at 416-966-1062, in person (June 30 – July 11 only) at The Randolph Centre for the Arts, 736 Bathurst Street (Advance tickets are $11 ($10+$1 convenience fee), and $5 for FringeKids (no convenience fee for kids tickets).

– Several money-saving passes are available if you plan to see at least 5 shows