I have always been very fond of ABBA. As a child, they were one of the few modern groups my parents enjoyed - otherwise a household situated firmly in the early 1960s of my parents' teen years, ABBA represented one of their rare forays into musical modernity. We all enjoyed ABBA, enjoyed the costumes and the dance and the infectious music.
My favourite band member was Frida, by a country mile, partly because she (like me) was dark-haired and dark-eyed, and partly because I thought she was feistier and cheekier than Agnetha. Even at 7, I liked feisty and cheeky in a female role model!
My girls, now almost 7 and 5, love ABBA too. Truly, madly, deeply they love them. My eldest, who loves to sing, has lyrics sheets for a few songs and belts them out at random intervals (it is endearing, if ever so slightly disconcerting, to hear Waterloo floating out of the toilet at top volume, although, as my husband remarks, it is oddly apt as well). My 5 year old is more about the dancing. She can do all the moves, and makes up her own dances, and emotively performance-arts to Fernando, The Winner Takes it All, and Chiquitita, her eyebrows waggling dramatically to denote the shifts and turns mood in the song.
So when I heard that the ABBA World exhibition was coming to Melbourne, I had mentally bookmarked it as a possible school holidays activity. I was delighted to be saved the trouble and expense when Nuffnang organised a family day at Federation Square today, which included family tickets to the NGV's Rupert Bunny - Artist in Paris exhibition and to the second ever day of ABBA World. Score!
My girls had some interesting observations about the Rupert Bunny exhibition, but I'm planning to save them for a post I'm working on about children and art appreciation. The highlight of the day for them both, though (and, truth be told, for me, ABBA tragic that I am) was the 80 minutes we spent in ABBA World.
ABBA World is ... intense. It is very full of sound, colour and movement, and thrillingly stacked with interactive activities for the kids and I to enjoy. While my husband long-sufferingly remained outside with the baby sleeping in her pram, A, E and I perused ABBA films, ABBA costumes, sang ABBA songs, had our photos taken as part of ABBA album covers, and read / listened to the detailed commentary of ABBA's journey. E, my 5-year-old, found the detail a bit much at times, but A and I were both a little bit nerdishly entranced at it. We came out singing a three-part Mama Mia and sang all the way home. It was really a fantastic exhibition, and excellent fun for both those who remember ABBa and those whose parents inflict ABBA on them at regular intervals ;-)
The folk at Nuffnang have kindly donated free double passes to ABBA World to all the family day attendees for giving away on our blogs. This is about $53 of value (yes, it isn't cheap, this exhibition) and the tickets must be used by 4 July 2010. So here is the deal:
If you are interested in a double pass to ABBA World, and are either in or prepared to travel to Melbourne, leave a comment telling me which is your favourite ABBA song, and why, by 5pm on Friday (25 June). I'll select my favourite answer and announce the winner on the morning of Saturday 26 June.
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