REVIEW: Mamma Mia! at The Kings Theatre, Southsea

A scene from Mamma Mia! Picture by Brinkhoff/Moegenburg.
A scene from Mamma Mia! Picture by Brinkhoff/Moegenburg.
Lucy MayBarker, centre, performs on stage in Mamma Mia!

Feelgood fun is The Name of The Game for Mamma Mia!

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There are a few West End shows that are guaranteed to have audience members on their feet and dancing by the final curtain call.

And this high-octane touring production of Mamma Mia! is no exception.

Jukebox musicals can be notorious for falling down on their narratives, instead coasting on the popularity of their songs. However, what Mamma Mia! may lack in storyline it more than makes up for in energy.

Having seen the show in the West End a few years ago, I was impressed by the high production values that were retained in this touring version, such as the perfect recreation of an idyllic Greek island from a couple of adaptable set pieces.

As an ensemble the cast excelled, perfectly translating the unique Abba sound to the rich Broadway-style harmonies required for the stage. The dancing was both impressive and comedic at times, particularly during what I can only describe as the ‘flipper sequence.’

Stand-out performances came from the female cast members and included Shona White as Donna Sheridan who held the audience captive with her heart-wrenching rendition of The Winner Takes it All. The comic relief in Donna’s pals of Rosie and Tanya was also note perfect courtesy of Nicky Swift and Helen Anker.

Unfortunately the weakest performer was Philip Ryan as Sky who tended to get lost among the cast and failed to command the stage during Lay All Your Love On Me.

But overall this is an energetic slice of the West End that will have audiences leaving the theatre with a smile on their face.

Until June 23.