Gearing up for Abba show

About 100 people have auditioned for 29 parts in the Taieri Musical Society's next production, Mamma Mia!.

Society president Tania Graham said she was confident the group would have good actors for the nine leading roles, given the international stage show's popularity and that it was the first time it would be performed in the South Island.

Getting the rights for the production, which would be the first show the group had staged at the Regent Theatre, was a ''big coup'', Ms Graham said.

The society had formed a consortium with Doug Kamo's production company, DKCM, which had been successful in securing the New Zealand rights, second only behind the Auckland Musical Theatre, which would screen its version of the show in Auckland in March next year.

She said it was exciting to be putting on the Abba tribute show.

''It's such a groovy show, rather than a set musical-theatre thing.''

The original West End production of Mamma Mia! has been performed more than 5000 times in London, and an international tour has visited more than 74 cities.

A 2008 feature film adaptation is the most successful movie musical ever, grossing more than $600 million internationally.

Community/amateur musical theatre companies throughout the country are combining resources to create the sets, costumes and other resources for Mamma Mia!, which will be used to mount a series of productions over a two-year period, beginning in Auckland.

The next South Island show will be 18 months after the Taieri production shows in May next year.

Mr Kamo said he was ''absolutely stoked'' to be directing the show, which had been produced so few times by regular musical societies.

Auditions finished yesterday, and a cast list would be announced soon.

• The 2014 DebtBreaker season of Mamma Mia! runs at the Regent Theatre from May 22-31.

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