Review: Abba Mania at Royal Hall, Harrogate

Abba Mania on stage at the Royal Hall. (Picture by Mike Hine)
Abba Mania on stage at the Royal Hall. (Picture by Mike Hine)

By Ed White

It was the night the Royal Hall was turned into a 70s cruise ship, but that’s exactly what was expected from Abba Mania’s feel-good factor tribute night.

Almost everyone loves a singalong and a boogie to Abba’s greatest hits and it was all in a good cause - the Royal Hall Restoration Trust.

There have been many spin-offs from the popular Swedish group over the years, including smash hit film Mamma Mia, featuring the ever-intriguing performance of Piers Brosnan.

With the former James Bond star’s solo still fresh in the memory, Abba Mania didn’t have to do too much to impress. The foursome offer a rapturous crowd the usual mix of ballads and classics of the Scandinavian wondergroup – with a selection of cheesy costumes to boot.

It was the perfect occasion for a bit of ‘don’t care dancing’ with the old favourites Mamma Mia, Waterloo and Voulez Vous booming out in the bright lights.

‘Agnetha’ and ‘Frida’ sang with enthusiasm throughout and did their level best to bring the crowd up out of their chairs and dancing in the aisles.

Agnetha did a couple of excellent solo performances, with Frida grabbing the stage after the interval to nail another hit.

As the night went on, the awkwardness of leaving your seat to enjoy the party feel abated. And the hundreds present were left thanking Abba for the music when the group returned for the encore.

It’s certainly worth taking a chance on this foursome for a night of sheer fun, if you can throw yourself into signing your heart out and dancing your socks off.