Presented by Flaming Sambucas
Reviewed 18th February 2018
I’m a woman of a certain age, who spent my teens with ABBA, largely thanks to an Agnetha obsessed older brother who ensured our house frequently rang out with Abba classics like Waterloo, Gimmie Gimmie and Super Trouper. Over three decades later I can still recall every lyric, costume and dance move. Despite this, or perhaps because of it, this was my first time seeing Adelaide based group Flaming Sambucas present their Abba tribute show. I was sceptical about the ability of any group to accurately portray the original band, but that doubt disappeared minutes into this colourful, lively and highly enjoyable show.
The band is lead by founder member Terry Nicholas with Natalie Ermer Jensen, Jodie Dry and Dean Kelley and are supported by outstanding musicians Tzan Niko on guitar and Matt McNamee on drums. Their performance honours Abba with beautiful harmonies, stunning Abbaesque outfits and careful replication of musical arrangements. The show is very visual with frequent costume changes and well selected video and photographs of the original group enhancing the story telling without detracting from the live music. Their popularity is evident and the German Club was packed with nearly 400 Fringe goers who lapped up every minute of the two hour non stop performance. The sound at the German Club is outstanding and perfect for this kind of event. The group ventured confidently into the audience, with Anni-Fred even using the long trestle tables as a catwalk at one point, and audience participation was encouraged in the form of sing alongs, dancing, and dragging a few brave souls to the stage to attempt the choreography and singing.
A great night of nostalgia for those who lived through the 70s and for the new generation of fans that have sprung out of the Mamma Mia movie and stage musical. Although this was a one night only show for the Fringe, they regularly perform in South Australia and beyond. Catch them when you can.
Reviewed by Trish Francis
Rating out of 5: 5
Venue: Showroom One, The German Club
Season: February 18th
Duration: 120 minutes
Tickets: Season ended