Mamma Mia!: The Musical Sensation that Remains a Crowd-Pleaser
Mamma Mia! is the timeless story about Sophie Sheridan, a young and soon-to-be bride who is looking for her real father to give her away at the wedding. However, there are three men around the same time her mother became pregnant with her, meaning three potential fathers. How Greek! Phyllida Lloyd’s Mamma Mia! is currently playing at the Broadhurst Theatre.
Judy McLane headlines the show as Donna Sheridan, after playing the role of Tanya for seven years. Other notable cast members are Laurie Veldheer as Sophie Sheridan, Lauren Cohn as Rosie, Felicia Finley as Tanya, Graham Rowat as Harry Bright and Zak Resnick playing the role of Sky.
Audiences were lined up for the global smash hit based on the songs of ABBA, which featured musical numbers like “Mamma Mia,” “Dancing Queen” and “Take a Chance on Me.” Each song was carried by the amazing vocals of the leads, but also backed by the hilarious Greek chorus. Mamma Mia! would not be the same without the nosy neighbors in the background following Donna Sheirdan’s every move.
Once McLane began to sing “The Winner Takes It All,” she blew audiences away. McLane sang it with such an emotional depth yet never veered from the powerhouse notes the iconic song requires. When the song concluded, audiences heavily applauded the performance, along with numerous cheers – McLane had proven that she is no longer portraying the supporting role of Tanya, but rather after seven years, has transformed into the powerful character of Donna Sheridan.
Zak Resnick, the young actor who is Sky on the Mamma Mia! stage, struggled with the groom-to-be role. Besides not looking present on the stage, his vocals were sub-par with every note in “Lay All Your Love on Me” being abruptly cut off. Resnick shows great potential, but this role may not have been the most solid Broadway debut for the young man.
Also, the chorus vocals backstage throughout the entire show were too loud as they overpowered the soloists onstage that audiences want to hear.
Mamma Mia! was choreographed by Anthony Van Laast, and contributed to the overall spectacle of the musical. Not many songs require elaborate choreography, but the ones that do were very well-done. Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!, Voulez-Vous, Lay All Your Love on Me and Under Attack were musical numbers that illustrated great choreography. In Under Attack specifically, there was an instance where Donna and Sophie Sheridan switched places so flawlessly that audiences did not even notice Donna came on stage. Overall, in every musical number, the stagecraft was beautiful.
After the show ends happily with a marriage and the start to an adventure, all of the cast return to the stage for entertaining encore performances of the hit ABBA songs including “Mamma Mia,” “Dancing Queen” and “Waterloo.” The stage lights parade through the crowd as audience members quickly rise from their seats to join the scene, singing and dancing with the entire Mamma Mia! cast. The audience interaction works perfectly for the enjoyable show like this one, and is another reason why people cannot resist it.
Mamma Mia! is a well-done show that will continue to be successful with the timeless story, catchy songs and amazing visuals on a Broadway stage. After each show, Mamma Mia! continues to prove they have earned their exclaimed title!
Be sure to catch the musical sensation that remains a crowd-pleaser. For more information on the show and how to purchase tickets, please visit: http://www.mammamianorthamerica.com/.