From October 11-14, 2018, under the leadership of Director Len Lifchus and Producer Pat Hooper, with Musical Direction by Bill Crane andChoreography by Melissa Earle, Showplace Performance Centre PresentsShowplace Celebrates: The Music of ABBA, a fundraiser for Showplace featuring talented local performers.
Internationally beloved Swedish pop group ABBA is one of the best selling music artists in the history of popular music, having sold over 350 million albums and singles worldwide. ABBA’s songs are universally celebrated, and now Showplace celebrates the music live in concert with this special homage to the group.
With chart topping singles such as “S.O.S”, “Mamma Mia”, “Fernando”, and “Dancing Queen” ABBA’s hits are the quintessential seventies and eighties danceable pop tunes, so being comfortably seated is probably not the first idea one has when thinking of their music. However, all profits, from what promises to be a high energy, dance in the aisle night of fun, will be contributed to a much needed seat replacement program for the theatre. The community has jumped on board to offer their support. “The cast are all local, talented performers, giving of their time as volunteers to help with this fundraiser,” says Hooper. “Bill, Len and I have worked with many of them in other productions but we are delighted to have a couple of newcomers.” With cast and production crew alike volunteering their time, and with the generous support of local sponsors, it is clear the community cares about Showplace.
This musical salute to ABBA was the brainchild of local musical director and educator, Bill Crane, who had previously worked on the Ain’t Misbehavin’ fundraiser for Showplace in 2016. “[Bill] asked me if I was interested in doing another show.” says Lifchus. “Once he told me it was the music of ABBA I was thrilled. I love the music of ABBA and remember dancing away to it in my youth. It became obvious when we chatted with Pat Hooper about producing this show for us that this show was going to be a memorable experience for everyone involved. More importantly it would be done as a fundraiser for Showplace.”
A compilation of ABBA’s most popular songs, the show features 12 singers and six dancers and is broken into five sections building to a spectacular final crescendo. “The concept of the show from the outset was to include a medley of music from all of the ABBA catalogue, including Chess which I really adore,” reveals Lifchus. “It is the original music done with a Peterborough flare. The song “Anthem” from this show is chilling.” The audience will be encouraged to sing along and “groove” to the music. The set, as well as original costumes designed for the cast, “using lots of colour and sparkle,” by Howard Berry, will set the tone. Says Lifchus, “This will be an evening to remember celebrating the phenomenon known as ABBA.“
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