Lockdowns, postponements and virtual rehearsals – it’s been a long journey getting Kyneton Theatre Company’s production of Mamma Mia! to the stage.
Arts events organisers across the state have become wary of putting on shows without a contingency plan, so that’s why when the company began rehearsals in July last year, they learnt every musical number in the show.
To be exact, that’s 22 of ABBA’s greatest hits – including Dancing Queen, Money, Money, Money and Take a Chance on Me – in just four weeks.
Then, Victoria went into lockdown, and they took their rehearsals online.
“We quickly discovered we couldn’t really manage the music on Zoom, but everyone did all their lines and we did two rehearsals a week,” musical director Caroline Schmidt said.
“The cast had all their lines and everything down by the time we were allowed out again, in November.”
Ms Schmidt said it was “fantastic” to finally be able to perform again, especially with eased mask restrictions too.
“It really feels like a return to normal and it feels like a return to the theatre,” Ms Schmidt said.
“We haven’t been able to touch the bluestone theatre for two years nearly, and for those of us who do a show every year, we’ve really missed the community that we have, we’ve missed showing off, we’ve missed the opportunity to put something together and get a real sense of achievement.
“Coming back is more special, in some ways, than when we’re doing a show normally.”
The show is happening every weekend in March at the Kyneton Bluestone Theatre, with a mix of matinee and evening performances taking place.
It’s the biggest technical show the company has done so far and Ms Schmidt said that everything from the musical numbers, to the dancing, to the lighting to the live band will make a trip to the theatre worth it.
“We’re putting on a really high energy show and the cast is fantastic,” she said.