All about ABBA
Even though the songs may be from 40 years ago, these performers will put a modern-day twist on some favorites that will have the audience singing along.
Thank You for the Music – A Modern Tribute to ABBA will be performed at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31, at the Schwan Community Center for the Performing Arts.
The contemporary musical tribute includes several of the Swedish group’s hits, including “Dancing Queen,” “Take A Chance on Me” and “Waterloo.”
Blake Pullen of Pullen Productions, the company that puts on the tribute, co-wrote the show. The company is based out of Las Vegas.
“We wrote the show about three years ago,” he said. “This was one of our earlier ones. Pullen Productions also does a Mamas and Papas tribute – California Dreamin’.
Pullen said the tribute show has a couple of different casts – the one that tours around the country, and the other that is in Branson, Mo. year-round.
“There’s a big mass appeal to ABBA,” Pullen said. And with the musical “Mamma Mia,” there’s a new generation of people who are interested in the group’s music, he said. “ABBA has continued to sell a lot of records.”
A Modern Tribute to ABBA is a good family show, Pullen said, and is high energy and fun. The show’s performers talk about the history of the group during the show, he said.
“We speak about ABBA in the third person,” Pullen said. “It’s somewhat chronological, not strictly.”
“We cover pretty much all of their hit songs,” Pullen added. “It’s ABBA-intensive.”
What also sets A Modern Tribute to ABBA apart, Pullen said, is the show is fully choreographed.
“Which is not something ABBA did,” Pullen said. The tribute show includes a lot of dancing, he said. “It’ brings a lot more to the table.”
Performers with the tribute had to audition. Pullen said he looks for incredibly strong singers who will work well with the production.
“It’s all about finding people who can deliver the songs, fit the vibe of the show, a young hip fresh feel,” Pullen said. Pullen said the show is a younger take on the songs from the ’70s. “Personality is also an element as well.”
Pullen said the performers do some different arrangements to the well-known ABBA numbers.
“Some modern rethinking on some of their songs,” Pullen said. For example, Pullen said, there’s one arrangement that is club dance oriented, and there is also an a cappella arrangement.