Mamma Mia! Theatre Royal, Norwich. March 2017.
I wrote about seeing this show, with my mum, when we went to New York and in that review I explained why, however cheesy the show is, I am always going to think of it fondly. I was wary of a return visit to the show - what if it was all location, location, location that made me enjoy it before?
I'm pleased to say that the slightly scaled down tour version made just as fun event as before, and in fact with a better behaved audience it might have even been just a little bit better as nothing got drowned out.
What really impressed me was just how much like Greece the set looked, and also just how well some lighting and a backdrop created absolutely the light and feel of a Greek island in summer. The shutters were thrown open and with a simple cloth, a cut out tree and the lights I believed I was looking out over the Aegean sea.
I also noticed a lot more of the peripheral action this time, perhaps because we had such excellent seats in the circle, however there did seem to be a lot of character acting from the support cast which really added to the main characters.
All of the cast seemed in fine voice this week and once more my admiration for anyone who can sing, dance and act in ridiculous costumes is total.
However I think that my favourite bit of the evening came from the audience. Just in front of us was a family of mum and three teenagers. When it came to the last number/curtain call where audience participation is encouraged these three teenagers sat there literally head in hand in embarrassment as their mum danced and sang along - they really didn't want to be there at that point.
Mamma Mia! has a daft plot but it is great fun and I can even recommend it as a cold cure - I felt really quite rough with my first cold of the winter when I saw this but for the 2 1/2 hours I forgot everything and had a super trouper time, well worth the money. money, money!