Mamma Mia at The Empire, Liverpool

By Manchester's Finest | 5 March 2015

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Packed with smash hits, witty one liners and enough feel-good factor to warm the cockles of the coldest of hearts Mamma Mia has arrived in Liverpool as part of its international tour.

Mamma 1

Written by British playwright Catherine Johnson, and based on the classic songs penned by Benny and Bjorn, popularity for Mamma Mia shows no signs of waning. Audiences just can’t get enough of the show. Swaying in the aisles had begun even before the end of the overture, the audience eager to sing along to the back catalogue of Swedish super-group Abba.

Niamh Perry, (last seen locally in Sweeny Todd at the Exchange) takes on the role of Sophie, a naive twenty year old on the verge of getting married to her sweetheart Sky (Justin Thomas). Sophie is desperate to find out who her father is before her big day, she tracks down three potential candidates and invites them all to her wedding, with the added complication of leaving it all as a surprise for her free spirited mother Donna (Sara Poyzer).

Mamma 2

Time flies by as you get swept away by familiar songs accompanied by a fun and entertaining script. The show is light, bright and utterly fabulous. Sara Poyzer does a fantastic job as Donna, and the on stage chemistry between her and real life husband Richard Standing who plays architect Sam (as you would hope) is fantastic. Laughs are delivered in bucket loads by Donna’s two best mates Rosie (Sue Devaney) and Tanya (Shobna Gulati) who together are hilarious and individually deliver hugely entertaining solo performances. Devaney sets her sights on Aussie adventurer Bill (former Home and Away regular Michael Beckley) and makes sure he knows it through her comical delivery of Take a Chance on Me, whilst Gulati teaches the cocky wannabe toyboy Pepper (Alex Simmons) a thing or two during her fab rendition of Does Your Mother Know.

There were whoops and whistles a plenty when Sky (Justin Thomas) whipped off his shirt and even a shout out of ‘I’ll have ya!’ from one audience member when it looked like things may not go according to plan for Sophie and Sky, all adding to the fun and exuberance of the show. The ensemble are fantastic, their delivery of Anthony Van Laast’s choreography is impressive, slick, smooth and totally full of energy. Mamma Mia will well and truly release your inner dancing queen, feel good theatre at its absolute finest.

Liverpool Empire until Saturday March 14th