“Vibrant costumes, ABBA songs, technical difficulties, and …”
Mamma Mia!, an extremely renowned and well-known show, is back for it’s eighth run in Minneapolis. Although the story line is less than riveting, its quirky scenes and fun music from ABBA make it worthwhile. Running from February 7-12 at the Orpheum theatre, Mamma Mia! is the perfect show to see for a bit of perseverance through our long Minnesota winters with its reminder of fun-filled summer flings.
The soundtrack of Mamma Mia! is nothing less than iconic. Anyone is bound to know at least one song, which means just about anyone is apt to have a good time here. With such iconic anthems, expectations are high when it comes to the vocals from the cast. The performances were decent but often there were uneven volume levels and uneasy moments among some of the singers. For example normally one of my favorite numbers is Mamma Mia, but the number in this production felt quite lack luster.
It seemed as though the production focused on layering vocals and the orchestration, with some songs featured as pre-recorded versions of songs, while yet others were played live by the orchestra which at times seemed a bit awkward and resulted in the songs feeling muddled. The dancing, however, made up for the poor musical choices. Full of energy and quirkiness (and some really hot shirtless guys) the dance numbers were my favorite part of the show.
Like several past shows the set was quite minimalistic, but functional. The lighting at times almost took away from the show as a result of several poor lighting choices. Among them was the vibrant green lights in Sophie’s dream scene and the random red lighting during the bachelorette scene.
The closing number was the most fun part of the show. Everyone was singing along to the most infamous songs from the show. The audience was on their feet swaying to the music and clapping along, it was impossible not to be on your feet. The costumes were as fun and vibrant as the dance numbers. Neon colors geared towards reflecting the 70’s and sequins for days.
Mamma Mia, even with its flaws, is a must see. Although it does have a basic story line the liveliness makes it worthwhile. To get out of your winter funk and get some hope for summer, go see mamma mia!