Mamma Mia at the Brighton Centre.
Currently, on its first ever UK tour, Mamma Mia! is a show which needs little introduction, especially after the film release nine years ago. Based around the hit songs of ABBA, the show has been a hit in the West End for many years with its sunny Greek island setting, well-known pop tunes, comic elements and feel-good factor.
The touring version is professional and colourful in its presentation with a simple two-piece rotating set and good lighting reflecting the summer warmth and telling the story of a young girl’s search for her father, one of three, on the eve of her wedding.
The cast are relatively unknown to the average theatre goer and for a show of this magnitude you would expect better known actors but they collectively do their best to recreate the well-known, hard to sing, ABBA hits interwoven with the storyline. Helen Hobson as Donna has a great rapport with her two Dynamos, Gillian Hardie as the fun-loving Rosie and Emma Clifford as the cougar Tanya. Lucy May Barker plays a believable and sweet Sophie. The lead males allow the females to shine through and the fit enthusiastic ensemble really perform with amazing energy.
The Brighton Conference centre is a vast auditorium to stage such a musical and so the audience did not really get involved until late in the second half . The reprise is fantastic and is where the cast came alive enjoying the fun of the show, spandex outfits , glitter and of course the confetti .
Mamma Mia! is a real upbeat crowd-pleaser and it’s great for local audiences to enjoy live performances of this sure-fire hit.
Reviewer: Sandra Jenkins.