To all the Fernandos and Chiquititas out there…
Opening just two weeks ago, ABBAWORLD is a museum-cum-theme park in London with enough music, mementoes and memory-lane appeal to satisfy even the most fervent ABBA fan (and you KNOW who you are).
“It started with, ‘How do we give the visitor a big hug in each room?”‘ said Magnus Danielsson of ABBAWORLD. “This is going to be more like going to ‘Mamma Mia!’ than going to an exhibition. We want people to sing and dance.”
“The exhibition tells the band’s story in 25 rooms spread over 30,000 square feet (2,800 sq. meters). Glass cases contain spangly costumes in silk, satin and spandex. Visitors can see recreations of Polar Studios, where the band recorded, and the seaside cabin near Stockholm where Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson composed the band’s hits.
One corner holds the helicopter pictured on the cover of the 1976 album “Arrival.”
An ambitious interactive element lets visitors take quizzes, recreate the band’s sound at a mixing desk, or dance and sing alongside an animated ABBA via “holographic video” technology. The gift shop features Abba T-shirts, teddy bears, jigsaw puzzles and figurines – along with CDs.
An audioguide – narrated by Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgard, one of the stars of the film version of “Mamma Mia!” – traces ABBA’s story, from the members’ amateur teenage bands to stardom. The breakthrough came in 1974, when the band was the surprise winner of the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest with “Waterloo” – a song that brought ABBA’s mix of bouncy pop melodies, multilayered harmonies and slightly silly lyrics to the world.”
For the full article, click here.