SAMEENA ZEHRA Arsebiscuits

Fringe Bar, 26-32 Allen St, Te Aro, Wellington

04/05/2021 - 08/04/2021

Production Details

We’re all some kind of arsebiscuit. The trick is how to be more biscuit and less arse. What price friendship, when revolution beckons? What price joy & compassion? And what about the menz? 

In her debut solo show for the NZ International Comedy Festival, multi award winning international performer Zehra is here in Aotearoa doing what she does best; a goulash of storytelling and political commentary, peppered with absurdity, dark humour and personal context.

“Funny, fiery, brave and true” – The Herald, Scotland
Winner – Outstanding Performer 2017, NZ Fringe Festival (‘Tea with Terrorists’)
Winner – Outstanding Ensemble 2017, NZ Fringe Festival (‘Fiery Tongues’)
Winner – Spirit of the Fringe 2019, NZ Fringe Festival
Best in Fringe nominee 2016, NZ Fringe Festival (‘Homicidal Pacifist’) 
Best in Fringe & Best Comedy Nominee 2019, Dunedin Fringe Festival (‘Arsebiscuits’)

The Thursday 6 May performance of Arsebiscuits will be translated into NZ Sign Language by Shoshanna Cleary. Check out our Access and Inclusion page for more information. Please email or phone 09 309 9241 for any further assistance.

To keep this event accessible to all, Sameena Zehra is offering a limited number of $0 tickets. There are no barriers or boxes you have to tick to get these tickets – however to secure your spot, email to check there are still zero-priced tickets available. If you can afford the full price, please leave these tickets for those they’ll help the most.

Little hand – These are hard times for live performance artists. If you can, give this artist a little hand with a direct financial boost included in this ticket type.

Wellington Shows
The Fringe Bar
4, 6 & 8 May 2021
Full Price:  $25
Concession:  $20
Group 6+:  $20
Little Hand:  $35
*service fee may apply 

Wheelchair accessible
Frequent coarse language
Adult themes

R18 venue, unless with their parent or legal guardian. Strictly enforced. 

Theatre , Stand-up comedy ,

55 mins; Tue, Thur, Sat

We laugh because it’s true

Review by Margaret Austin 05th May 2021

This show is included in the ‘Something to Say’ section of the Comedy Festival guide. Sameena Zehra has a great deal to say on opening night at the Fringe Bar. Most of it’s insightful, some of it’s wise and a great deal of it is funny. 

“My life is pain and strange and love,” she tells us. Of Anglo Indian heritage, she is well placed to regale us with experiences, though “I’m bad at being a victim.” For sure, she never comes across as one.

I am continually impressed with a balanced, good humoured, generous response to comments and situations that would rile others lacking Zehra’s maturity and resilience. Attending a North Indian boarding school probably had a great deal to do with it. It was British Army Officer through and through – but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Zehra has a number of targets – and this is where her arses and biscuits come in. Most of us are a mixture she tells us, but some of us are decidedly more arse than biscuit. Trump and Johnson get a predictable bollocking as examples of the former. “If Boris had just had someone to love him” is an intriguing lament. 

Our commentator doesn’t let women off the hook. “We let them do it,” she rues, referring to the way some men treat women. And “We don’t nip shit in the bud.” These remarks demonstrate a balance and fairness all too often missing in socio-political rants.

Zehra doesn’t rant – she shares, confides and to a large extent accepts. Or seems to.

Beauty is a bullshit social construct, we hear. Gender is too – or is it cake? Studying a family tree is a waste of time. Guys – if you don’t know the difference between flirting and harassment, leave women alone.

Why does it take twice as long to catch a female serial killer than a male one? The answer makes us chuckle in spite of ourselves. We don’t laugh because something is funny – we laugh because it’s true.

Zehra invites us to travel with her on the road to biscuitland. As an example to follow, she’d be hard to beat. 


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