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ABBA Voyage to hold first ‘calmer concert’

Provisions will be made so that people with sensory processing needs can enjoy the smash-hit virtual concert residency

By Lisa Henderson on 20 Feb 2024

image © Johan Persson

ABBA Voyage in London will hold its first calmer concert, catering to those with sensory processing needs.

The smash-hit virtual concert residency has teamed up with A Relaxed Company, which advises productions and venues on accessibility for neurodiverse and autistic audiences, for the concert on 25 April.

Provisions will be made across ABBA Arena to ensure that those with sensory processing needs can enjoy the concert, including extra trained staff on hand, reduced arena capacity and chill-out zones around the venue.

A sensory setlist outlining what to expect from every song during the concert and a visual story explaining what to expect from the venue are available for any customers who would benefit from them. Sound and lighting at the concert will remain the same.

“ABBA Voyage is a magical experience, and we are so glad that the team is holding the calmer concert so that everyone can experience it,” says Katherine Usher and Chris Pike, co-founders of A Relaxed Company.

“We’ve been working with the whole team to ensure that the concert is ready to welcome everyone, whether you’re neurodivergent, sensory sensitive, or just looking for a calmer alternative.”

“ABBA Voyage is a magical experience, and we are so glad that the team is holding the calmer concert so that everyone can experience it”

ABBA Voyage debuted at London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in May 2022 to universal acclaim.

Held at the purpose-built 3,000-cap ‘ABBA Arena’ under the direction of producers Svana Gisla and Ludvig Andersson and director Baillie Walsh, the show grossed more than $2 million (€1.87m) a week, it was reported last year.

One of the most expensive productions in music history, the £140m (€164m) show has brought the Swedish group – Agnetha Fältskog, Björn Ulvaeus (co-founder of lead investor Pophouse Entertainment), Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad – back to the stage in avatar form, supported by a 10-piece live band.

The four members of ABBA spent five weeks being filmed by 160 cameras for motion capture as they performed the 22 songs that make up the show’s 95-minute runtime. Other key team members include co-executive producer Johan Renck, choreographer Wayne McGregor and AV tech specialist Solotech UK, led by director of special projects Ian “Woody” Woodall.

ABBA Arena is designed to fit 1,650 seats and space for a standing audience of 1,350. According to Bloomberg, the residency has already generated upwards of €140m in sales after selling over 1.5 million tickets, achieving a 99% occupancy rate with an average ticket price of around £85 (€100).

Discussions are reportedly taking place to expand ABBA Voyage to cities including Las Vegas, New York, Singapore and Sydney.


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