Australia: a land of sweeping plains and rugged landscapes, and if there’s one thing that we love more than beer and a barbecue- it’s ABBA!
In 2014, GOLD:The Ultimate ABBA Show landed in Australia for their “New Arrival Tour” performing to sold-out houses and playing to over 10,000 people across the country and are headed around the country once again to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the 1975 release ABBA featuring the hits Mamma Mia, SOS, I Do, I Do, I Do and many more.
Brisbane based Kathleen Maloney, who plays Agnetha, was waiting to board a plane to Perth when Dazz Hassan spoke to her about the tour and the group’s love for all things ABBA. There doesn’t need to be much background given on Australia’s relationship with ABBA. Quite simply, they were phenomenally successful in the 70’s and this was largely due to their massive fan base here. It’s a mutual love affair if you like.
Performing as Gold- The Ultimate ABBA Show for 2 years, both Maloney and Kirsten Elliott who plays Anna-Frid, have an uncanny resemblance to the original article. Maloney researched her role extensively and felt that ABBA were such an amazing, timeless band and there was still an intense desire from people to see and hear their music live. “We toured last year just to see how it went (the show) and it was fantastic, we were so blown away by the audience reaction we decided to take it on the road again, but this time with more hits and more costumes.”
Maloney feels that Australia’s love for ABBA was spurned by the bands connection with the Australian psyche of being laid back, and that the Aussie fans were open to having a good time. “ At our shows, whether old or young, everyone seems to love ABBA, it’s just the fun and energy of their music. Going through all their harmonies and the way they’ve composed their songs, it’s actually quite complicated and intelligent music, and yes it’s a bit of fun with the ‘daggy ‘costumes but it’s cool, smart music,” she says.
It’s hard to believe that 40 years ago ABBA stormed the world with their self-titled album ABBA, but what better an opportunity to celebrate a band that gave so much to so many, and that have provided a soundtrack to the lives of countless tragics like myself.
Maloney tends to agree, and sees the influence of ABBA as a completely timeless one. “Mama Mia was one of their biggest hits, and it’s now 40 years since it took over the world so we thought it would be a great opportunity to celebrate the best pop group of all time. Every time we sing it, EVERYONE seems to know the lyrics and the chorus, it’s still in everybody’s heads.”
It’s easy to be nostalgic about ABBA and to want to see them perform again, but anyone who can turn down an alledged Billion dollar offer to reform is surely serious about quitting the game whilst ahead. They left on a high and it’s easy to see why. ABBA left such an impact at their apex that it would be near impossible to maintain, and the world has seen enough of pop stars of a bygone era trying to remain current. ABBA were smart, and played the long-term strategy.
“It would have been amazing to see them tour the world just once more, but they did their hard work and have nothing more to prove. Also, Agnetha doesn’t like flying anymore so there’s little chance of it happening. Our show is about as close as you can get,”quotes Maloney.
But some things were never meant to be, just as much as some things were. We definitely thank ABBA for the music, and for GOLD- The Ultimate ABBA Show for giving it to us again.
GOLD- The Ultimate ABBA Show are currently touring and hitting Adelaide on Fri 20 March and Port Pirie on Sat 21 Mar.
Be sure to get out your inner Dancing Queen and say I Do, I Do, I Do to seeing the wonderful music of ABBA performed by an exceptionally talented group!
By Dazz Hassan
Friday, 20 March 2015 – Her Majesty’s Theatre – ADELAIDE www.bass.net.au / 131 246
Saturday, 21 March 2015 – Keith Michell Theatre – PORT PIRIE www.northernfestivalcentre.com.au / (08) 8633 8500
For remaining dates and tickets nationally: