Hit London show ABBA Voyage, the extraordinary virtual concert featuring pop legends ABBA, is to go on a global tour.
ABBA built the state-of-the-art ABBA Arena in East London to host the show, which has sold more than 1 million tickets since it opened in May 2022.
Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge announced the news during the company’s earnings call last Thursday 2 March.
Grainge said on the call that: “Since last May, we’ve also been putting new technology to work to reinvigorate and broaden Abba’s fan base to have a ABBA Voyage in which digital advertisers of the band perform a 90-minute concept created from motion capture. A proven hit in London with both critics and fans, the show has now already sold over 1 million tickets, has been extended to November this year, and plans are now in development to take ABBA Voyage around the world.”
It is unclear whether the producers will replicate the ABBA Arena in different cities around the world, or use existing stadiums.
ABBA Arena in London was built to be fully moveable – although there are no plans to leave London yet, with the show still pulling in thousands of fans a week.
ABBA Voyage took nearly six years to create, developing new technology and working with Hollywood visual effects company Industrial Light & Magic on the avatars – or ABBA-tars! – using sophisticated motion-capture technology to show the fabulous four as they looked in 1979.
The 90 minute ABBA Voyage concert is a visual and musical feast, defying all expectations of what a virtual concert can be, and bringing ABBA back to a whole new generation.
The show garnered great reviews when it opened last year, with five-stars from the Guardian and Mirror, with the Guardian calling the show “Jaw-dropping”.
ABBA’s Benny Ulvaeus also spoke about the show recently on the “Bjorn from ABBA and Friends” radio show on Apple Music Hits. He said: “The reason I got so intrigued by this was the technology – that it actually can be done. You can reproduce something that is a human being but on a screen. This semi-human being can sing songs, and speak and do all kinds of things.”
When asked if the fact that the technology could be used as force for badworried him, Ulvaeus said, “Absolutely, it does… But it was going to happen anyway. We are the first to do it, which is great, I think, to be the pioneers. But I’m sure in the future, we’ll have to be very careful about what can be done with avatars.”
Book tickets to ABBA Voyage at ABBA Arena in London