Rachel DeShon sings ABBA’s “Money, Money, Money” during a rehearsal for Mamma Mia!, which opens Thursday at the Capitol Theatre. Photo: Tyler Harper

Here we go again: Mamma Mia! set to open at the Capitol Theatre

The ABBA-inspired musical runs Thursday to Sunday

Take a chance on Mamma Mia! and it just might make an ABBA fan out of you.

That’s what happened to Pat Henman, who directs Black Productions’ take on the hit musical that will run six shows from Thursday to Sunday at the Capitol Theatre.

Henman was only a casual fan of the Swedish disco staples when she first auditioned for the show’s lead role nearly two decades ago in Toronto. She didn’t get it, but songs such as “Waterloo,” “Money, Money, Money,” and “Mamma Mia” stayed with her.

“I just learned to appreciate it more as music as opposed to a piece of pop music, as a piece of radio music that you just dance to. It suddenly had meaning for me,” she said.

The 25-member cast is led by Rachel DeShon, who plays protagonist Donna Sheridan. DeShon, a classically trained vocalist who primarily works in opera, said Mamma Mia! represents the end of a long journey back to musical theatre.

“When I graduated from college I was bound and determined to do musical theatre. Then I got hired and paid considerably to do opera, so that’s what I did.”

The plot of Mamma Mia!, a global hit that debuted on stage in 1999 and has included two movies, centres around the mystery of who the father of Donna’s daughter Sophie is ahead of her wedding.

DeShon said she thinks the comfort of pop music is the reason for the show’s ongoing popularity.

“There’s something about when people come into the theatre and hear something familiar. It’s the same reason people still like to come out and see Oklahoma!, all these Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, because there’s something accessible about it.”

But another draw for the Nelson production will be DeShon’s performance, which Henman says raised the bar for the rest of the cast.

“Everybody that surrounds her, they recognize her talent and I think it’s driven their game up,” said Henman. “I think the quality of the show is very high. Everybody wants to hit that. It’s such a good cast, it’s so well cast. I’ve seen people grow from the very first day of rehearsal.”

Mamma Mia! runs Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m. Two shows run at 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.



tyler.harper@nelsonstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

In Mamma Mia!, Sophie Sheridan, played by Vanessa Drusnitzer (centre), invites three men to her wedding as a way of finding out which one is her father. Photo: Tyler Harper

Rachel DeShon (centre) plays protagonist Donna in what director Pat Henman calls a standout performance. Photo: Tyler Harper

Just Posted

Former Nelson swimmers competing in NCAA

Jordan and Kelsey Andrusak will be rivals in in the Western Athletic Conference

CHECK THIS OUT: Don’t let reading fall by the wayside this summer

Avi Silberstein is the children’s librarian at the Nelson Public Library

Kootenay students learn about lake stewardship

Two hundred and fifty students from around Kootenay Lake participated in the Youth Water Festival

Restoration underway on Nelson cenotaph

The Nelson War Memorial was constructed in 1922

Protesters rally in Victoria over newly approved Trans Mountain pipeline

The Still No Consent! No Trans Mountain! 20 kilometre march will end at Island View Beach

Wildfire burning in coastal forest

A fire beside the Sea to Sky Highway is burning up a steep slope

PHOTOS: Event marks one year since soccer team rescued from Thai cave

Nine players and coach took part in marathon and bike event to help improve conditions at cave

Rock climber dies after fall at Stawamus Chief in Squamish

The man had fallen about 30 metres while climbing in the Grand Wall area

Five B.C. students taken to hospital after playing with vaping device

School district said students were taken to hospital ‘out of an abundance of caution’

Being a pot dealer is not what it used to be

Sunday Big Read: the business of selling marijuana in B.C. is a slow bureaucratic slog

VIDEO: Two more pride flags have been stolen from Langley woman

Lisa Ebenal was “angry” and “fed up” after the latest theft. Then people started showing suppport

B.C. couple who has raised 58 children turns to community amid cancer diagnosis

Family who raised, fostered and adopted many kids hoping to gain some precious together time to fight cancer

Canucks acquire forward J.T. Miller from Lightning

J.T. Miller, 26, had 13 goals and 34 assists for the Lightning last season

Most Read