Abbacadabra

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For the UK group who had a 1992 hit with Dancing Queen, see Dancing Queen#Other artists who have recorded covers of the song.
ABBAcadabra
Music Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus (of ABBA fame).
Lyrics Alain Boublil, Daniel Boublil
Productions 1983 France
1983 London
1985 Netherlands

Abbacadabra is the name of a French children's musical based on songs from the pop group ABBA, originally produced for French television in 1983 by Alain and Daniel Boublil, but which was later also transferred to an English stage version and two other television programs.

French television version[edit]

The French TV production consisted of 14 ABBA songs with new French lyrics by Alain & Daniel Boublil, and the story was based on classic fairy tales like Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Pinocchio, Snow White and others. The cast was made up of children and well known French singers like Fabienne Thibeault, Daniel Balavoine, Plastic Bertrand, Maurice Barrier, Daniel Boublil (as 'Daniel Beaufixe'), Francoise Pourcel (as Marie Framboise), Catherine Ferry, Stéphane Le Navelan, Stéphane Boublil (son of Alain), Clémentine Autain and Emmanuelle Pailly.

Frida from ABBA was invited to play the part of "Belle au bois dormant" (Sleeping Beauty), and recorded the song (a cover of ABBA's 1976 instrumental track "Arrival") "Belle" as a duet with Daniel Balavoine.

Abbacadabra was originally broadcast on the French TV channel TF1 over Christmas, 1983.

A soundtrack album, entitled ABBAcadabra: Conte musical, featuring songs and narration from the production, was produced in 1983 as well. According to liner notes on the album cover, arrangements and musical direction were provided by Raymond Donnez and production by Alain Boublil with assistance by Raymond Donnez, Daniel Boublil, and Françoise Pourcel. The album was released by WEA Filipacchi Music in France and WEA Music of Canada in Québec.[1]

Songs[edit]

  • Qu'est-ce que j'vais faire plus tard / When I Kissed the Teacher
  • Délivrés / The Visitors (Crackin' Up)
  • Abbacadabra / Take a Chance on Me
  • Mon nez mon nez / Money Money Money
  • Tête d'allumette / Super Trouper
  • Imagine-moi / I Wonder (Departure)
  • Carabosse super show / Dancing Queen
  • Pareils et mêmes / I Let the Music Speak
  • L'enfant do / Fernando
  • Lâchez mes cassettes / I'm a Marionette
  • Belle / Arrival
  • Envoyez le générique / Thank You for the Music

The London spectacle[edit]

Cameron Mackintosh decided to produce an English version of the TV show with lyrics by David Wood, Mike Batt, and Don Black. Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, who wrote the songs in ABBA, contributed with one new song, "The Seeker." Frida recorded "Time," an English version of "Belle"/"Arrival," as a duet with B. A. Robertson.

The musical premiered December 8, 1983 at the Lyric Hammersmith theatre in London, to mixed reviews and full houses for 8 weeks, closing on January 21, 1984. Among the actors were Elaine Paige, Michael Praed, Nigel Harman, Finola Hughes, B.A. Robertson, and Jenna Russell. Elaine Paige recorded a single, "Like An Image Passing By," a cover of ABBA's My Love, My Life.

English songs[edit]

The Dutch version[edit]

A Dutch version of this musical was recorded at the end of 1984 with José Hoebee and Marga Scheide (of Dutch girl group Luv') and aired on TV in 1985. Not all the songs were recorded, but the LP featured the same songs as the French Version. The album was recorded with Ron Brandsteder, Bonnie St Claire, Benny Neyman, Marga Scheide, José Hoebee, Nico Haak, Willem Duijn, Bianca Folkers, & Nancy Dubbeldam.

Dutch songs[edit]

Portuguese version[edit]

A Portuguese version was also made for television.

Portuguese songs[edit]

  • Que Mal Fizemos Nós (When I Kissed The Teacher)
  • O Sonho De Joao (The Visitors)
  • Abbacadabra (Take A Chance On Me)
  • O Nariz De Pinóquio (Money Money Money)
  • Aladin Fanfarrão (Super Trouper)
  • Branca De Neve E O Espelho (I Wonder (Departure))
  • Rainha Má Superstar (Dancing Queen)
  • Cinderela E O Soldadinho (I Let The Music Speak)
  • Os Amigos (Fernando)
  • Larguem A Cassette (I'm A Marionette)
  • Branca De Neve E O Principezinho (Arrival)
  • Não Basta Ralhar (Thank You For The Music)

Cast[edit]

  • Aladin : Fernando
  • Alice : Suzy Paula
  • Blanche Neige : Maria Joao
  • Cendrillon : Helena Ramos
  • Pinocchio : Nuno Gomes Dos Santos
  • Jose Nuno Martins,
  • Antonio Manuel Ribeiro,
  • Lenita Gentil,
  • Samuel,
  • As gemeas,
  • Joao et Pedro Cabeleira

References[edit]

External links[edit]