Abba’s magic Mamma Mia

Mamma Mia
Mamma Mia
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Mamma Mia, here we go again... Off down the highways and byways in search of a little fun.

And, boy, did we find it, by the bucketful.

The rush hour journey from Preston to Liverpool on a wet and windy might was never going to be the best. But, despite the rising blood pressure (from the passenger not the driver) this was one traffic jam worth the wait.

I grew up with ABBA, but wasn’t what you could call an avid fan. I boogied on the dance floor with the best of them and can still recall a tune or 20.

I rolled in my seat and split my sides with laughter when the movie came to the cinema - and have done the same to the DVD countless time.

So, when the musical version rolled into Liverpool, making the journey to the city was a no-brainer.

The acclaimed jukebox musical is written by British playwright Catherine Johnson and based on the songs of ABBA, composed by former band members Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus.

It was first performed in April 6, 1999 and the touring edition arrived in Liverpool direct from the Far East, ( where it went down a storm) and is the only UK mainland venue this year.

Hailed “the ultimate feel-good show,” for those who don’t know, Johnson’s tale unfolds on a Greek island paradise.

The night before her wedding, a daughter’s quest to discover the identity of her father brings three ex-boyfriends from her mother’s past back to the island they last visited 20 years ago.

The magic of ABBA’s timeless songs carries this romantic tale of love, laughter and friendship and provides the audience with the time of their lives.

The show contained more than 20 ABBA hits and right from the start I found myself comparing the set, costumes etc to the film.

Obviously the story was the same... and while Liverpool isn’t exactly a sun-drenched Greek island the set designers did a very good job of transporting us to one – if only for a couple of hours.

The cast – made up of some familiar faces – was superb, costumes fantastic ( took me back to the fashion of my youth) and the singing out of this world.

While I was a bit worried about the “restrained “ audience at the start of the show - not my usual up and dancing in the aisles from the start bunch – the show ended in spectacular fashion with the audience up on their feet, dancing, clapping, stomping their feet and joining in the sing-song encore.

Go see for yourself.

Sonja Asbury