Top Grosser Mamma Mia! Extends to March 2002Date: 20 February 2001
The ABBA-inspired musical, Mamma Mia!, has opened a new five-and-a-half month booking period at the Prince Edward Theatre. The hit show had been booking to September 2001 and is now taking bookings up to 16 March 2002.
Since opening at the Prince Edward in April 1999, Mamma Mia! has become one of the fastest-grossing productions in West End history. With sell-out houses from the first night, it recouped its £3 million production costs in a mere 27 weeks and has, to date, grossed more than £42 million. A Broadway production opens next month and another production is due to open in Australia this summer. Both will be directed by Phyllida Lloyd, who also directed the London blockbuster.
Mamma Mia! has music and lyrics by Abba stars Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus. The original musical, which tells the story of a mother and daughter on the eve of the daughter's wedding, has a book by Catherine Johnson. The story manages to pack in almost the complete back catalogue of Abba's hits from the 1970s, including "Dancing Queen", "Money, Money, Money", "Take a Chance on Me", "Chiquitita", "Thank You for the Music", "Voulez-Vous" and "Winner Takes It All".
Mamma Mia! is choreographed by Anthony Van Laast with design by Mark Thompson, lighting design by Howard Harrison and sound by Andrew Bruce. The current West End cast features Louise Plowright, Louise Gold, Lesley Nicol, Julie Atherton, Gareth Bryn, Nicolas Colicos, Craig Pinder and Michael Simkins.
- by Terri Paddock