What Super Troupers!

Those of us lucky enough to secure tickets for The ABBAGIRLS BAND last Friday at Malborough Village Hall most definitely had ‘the time of our lives’.

From the very first familiar chord; Frida and Agnetha stepping on stage in their signature sparkling capes and white leather boots, the appearance of Bjorn and Benny; any doubt that they would not live up to the originals was dispelled.

The sound was just as solid and infectious as we remembered it – and all the familiar numbers (plus some not so well known) were included for the audience to sing along with; get up and dance like Dancing Queens; and enjoy just as much as some of us had when Abba were at the height of their fame.

The costumes were as outrageous as they had been first time round, the changes slick and polished. The accents just Swedish enough and the choreography, step perfect. The girls were seamlessly synchronised, their movements seemingly effortless but undoubtedly the result of many hours hard work and practice. I defy anyone to suggest the original Frida and Agnetha could have done it better all those years ago!

And now add in brilliant musicianship – all four members were strong vocalists but whilst the two girls, understandably, took front stage for most of the time, the fabulous keyboard and guitar accompaniment of the two men was always an integral part of each of the instantly recognisable numbers.

Stunning lighting effects added to the occasion and within moments, we were lost in the world of Chiqitita and Fernando; of Angel Eyes and the 1974 smash hit which introduced them to the world stage courtesy of Eurovision – Waterloo. Chosen at the 50th anniversary celebration of the Eurovision Song Contest in 2005 as the best song in the competition’s history.

One of the highlights, however, had to be the sincere, sweet, acoustic rendition of one of the bands most iconic anthems - I have a Dream. Four voices in harmony; two guitars; standing down amongst the audience – the simplicity of this performance gave the vocals added poignancy.

I was delighted that a personal favourite of mine – As Good as New – was included in the line-up of songs, together with so many other tracks which are now synonymous with that era. Who doesn’t know the lyrics to at least one Abba hit, whatever their age, and with Mamma Mia : Here we go Again about to hit the screens this month, there will no doubt be a new generation singing along to them.

The ABBAGIRLS Band were the original Abba duo established in 1995 and with the addition of their accomplished men, they really were the complete Abba package. Remember, not all tribute bands are the same…

“Abbagirls - not just cabaret, pure ABBARET!”