Ar­rival from Swe­den Plays the Mu­sic of ABBA

Vancouver Magazine - - City - —Michael White

When ABBA split in 1982, their pass­ing didn’t arouse a great deal of pub­lic mourn­ing. Much like the Bee Gees, the Swedish quar­tet had come to be viewed as arem­nant of the pre­vi­ous decade, not suited to the brave new world of new wave and MTV. But then, grad­u­ally, ABBA be­came stronger in ab­sen­tia than any­one could have imag­ined. Ges­tures of trib­ute such as the film Muriel’s Wed­ding and the play Mamma Mia! served to re­mind the masses that theirs was one of the most ex­tra­or­di­nary cat­a­logues in pop. (In 2010, the band sold more than 375 mil­lion units.) Per­haps the great­est tes­ta­ment to ABBA’s en­dur­ing pop­u­lar­ity is that, in the ab­sence of a re­u­nion (the four mem­bers have turned down count­less lu­cra­tive oŠers), trib­ute acts have be­come a ma­jor at­trac­tion. Of the lot, how­ever, only dop­pel­gänger Ar­rival from Swe­den is oŠicially sanc­tioned by the gen­uine ar­ti­cle—and they also wear a re­pro­duc­tion wardrobe de­signed by the band’s same tai­lor from 40-odd years ago. “Danc­ing Queen,” “S.O.S.” and the rest of ABBA’s hits will be treated to orig­i­nal orches­tral grandeur when Ar­rival from Swe­den per­forms them along­side the VSO and con­duc­tor Wil­liam Row­son.

The Deets Date: May 2 Venue: Or­pheum The­atre Price: $50–$75 van­cou­ver­sym­

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