Mamma Mia! (4 stars)

This article is from 2016

Review: Mamma Mia!

credit: Brinkhoff Mögenburg

Lively Greek island romp delivers one chart hit after another

Throughout their chart-topping years, Abba had the ability to capture ears of all persuasions. Everyone from musos to those who only cared about a good beat on the dance floor loved their work. And clearly, Mamma Mia! is trying to do the same.

The acting is strong, the vocals even stronger, characters are well-rounded and likeable and the story, far-fetched as it is, has a beating heart. So if you like your musicals upbeat and fun, with a tender sucker punch before a happy ending, this is the place to be.

Inevitably, some of the 23 Abba songs included in the show feel a little shoe-horned, but most slide in naturally and, with the slightest of lyrical tweaks, fit the narrative perfectly. Which is testament to both the cleverness of Catherine Johnson's script, and the wonderful storytelling inherent in almost all of Abba's hits.

Set on a Greek island, where mum Donna and daughter Sophie have got by without a father figure for 20 years, the show has a sun-dappled feel that leaves you longing for a holiday. With three men in contention for the role of papa, and Sophie's wedding fast approaching, humour abounds as the stag and hen nights get underway and hormones run amok.

The sexual references, both verbal and physical, have had a subtlety bypass. But with every grope, hump and double entendre going down a storm, clearly the show knows its audience.

Edinburgh Playhouse until 7 Jan, 2017

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the information displayed here is accurate, always check with the venue before attending (especially during the Covid-19 pandemic).

Mamma Mia!

  • Directed by: Phyllida Lloyd
  • Written by: Catherine Johnson, Benny Andersson (music & lyrics), Bjorn Ulvaeus (music & lyrics)

The smash hit musical based on the songs of Abba continues to storm the UK. Since premiering in London this funny comedy has been seen by over 54 million people all around the world. Featuring songs including 'Dancing Queen', 'Super Trouper' and 'Take A Chance On Me'.

Birmingham Hippodrome

Thu 12 May 2022

£43–£73.50 / 0844 338 5000

Fri 13 May 2022

£43–£73.50 / 0844 338 5000

Sat 14 May 2022

£43–£73.50 / 0844 338 5000

Brighton Centre

Tue 16 Aug 2022

£15–£52.50 / 0844 847 1515

Wed 17 Aug 2022

£15–£52.50 / 0844 847 1515

Thu 18 Aug 2022

£15–£52.50 / 0844 847 1515

…and 8 more dates until 27 Aug 2022

Bristol Hippodrome

Tue 14 Jun 2022

£13–£90.50 / 0844 847 2325

Wed 15 Jun 2022

£13–£90.50 / 0844 847 2325

Thu 16 Jun 2022

£13–£90.50 / 0844 847 2325

…and 14 more dates until 2 Jul 2022

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