There have been many great talents in the history of music. But only a few of them managed to stand out from the crowd. In such a way that they and their compositions could achieve immortality. These legendary artists inevitably include Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Elvis, and a band that managed to achieve this unique status in their lifetime, ABBA.
ABBA’S BREAK LASTS 40 YEARS
It was exactly 40 years ago. And, it was a shock to many fans when Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson announced that ABBA would be taking a break. Björn’s statement then was: We don’t know how long the break will last… Back then, hardly anyone expected that four decades would have to pass before the four Swedes would reunite.
It’s fascinating. Even in times of their musical abstinence, every child knew the name ABBA- It was made up of the initials of the band members. To this day, it doesn’t matter which style of music one or the other personally prefers.
Everyone really knows the ABBA classics. Even teenagers are not only familiar with the songs but also with the lyrics. The songs instantly put everyone in a good mood. They are quite simply timeless.
The arrangements are unbelievably complex. The voices of singers Agneta Falkstog and Anni-Fried Lyngstad are still unique today. It’s impossible to copy them. The two different women were considered style icons and sex symbols in the 70s and 80s. Typically Scandinavian, they were not only beautiful but incredibly talented, authentic, and deep.
The songs were visionary and groundbreaking in the ’70s. And they still are. Moreover, they laid the foundation for the music we still celebrate today. Over the years, fans of all ages have hoped to see ABBA live one more time. There was a rumor that a sheik from the Emirates offered the band a billion dollars for just one performance.
ABBA VOYAGE – THE GREAT SHOW IN LONDON
Thank God we don’t have to spend that much to see the band back on stage. Because today it was finally time. For the time being, guests were able to marvel at the long-awaited concert series ABBA VOYAGE.
The ABBA Arena was built exclusively for this purpose in London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Just like the songs of the Swedes, the hall is also visionary. Not only does it offer space for 3,000 people. Moreover, it also has 291 loudspeakers that generate 870,000 watts of audio amplification during the concert. Let’s hope that this power doesn’t create an earthquake. In addition, 500 moving spots cover 30,000 points of the arena in brilliant light.
Probably, the most spectacular feature of the arena, however, is the stage. Unfortunately, Agneta, Anni-Fried, Björn, and Benny are not in person on this one. Of course, many fans have wished for this. However, ABBAtare instead performs the stunning songs.
SCIENCE FICTION ON STAGE
ABBA is once again setting trends. This time not only in the field of music but as a live event. The legendary Industrial Light & Magic company, founded by none other than Star Wars creator George Lucas, is now bringing for the first time holograms to the stage. So lifelike that audiences forget in moments that these are computer animations.
The cool costumes, designed by designer Bea Åkerlund in cooperation with Dolce & Gabbana, Manish Arora, Erevos Aether, and Michael Schmidt, also contribute to this. They show ABBA as glamorously as we know and love them, only updated for the year 2022. Wayne McGregor did the choreography. While we can experience the four superstars only virtually, a ten-people band plays the entire concert live.
The concert also features two short films by award-winning art collective Shynola. It is a two-part narrative that accordingly spans two ABBA classics.
So, similar to a musical, there is a side-story in which the curious explorer Rora plays a special role. ABBA Voyage is now bookable until May 28, 2023, with further dates to be announced soon. All information is on abbavoyage.com.
Text Marco Kokkot
Bilder: Universal Pictures