Thu. Oct 6th, 2022

The Abba digital avatars, or Abbatars, as they’ve been nicknamed, on stage in the Abba Arena are designed to transport the audience back to the group’s 1970s heyday.

Hannah Moore speaks to producers of the show, Ludvig Andersson and Svana Gisla, about what it takes to make a virtual show, and persuading Benny and Björn to shave off their beards. The production cost £140m, but Gisla says the show was never about making the money back. “We will never recoup – don’t tell the investors,” she jokes. “It was always to create something that’s never been done before.”

The Guardian’s head rock and pop critic, Alexis Petridis, and the Guardian’s deputy music editor, Laura Snapes, were at the opening night. Petridis tells Moore about the history of the band and Snapes expresses concern that we might see more music acts going on tour in digital form – even after they have died.

  • Clips from Abba Voyage, Abba, Björn Again, BBC, Universal Pictures, Live at Coachella 2012

Photo taken during the Abba Voyage virtual concert

Photograph: Johan Persson/Abba Voyage/PA

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