Monday, 23 June 2008

Hitkrant, November 1977: ABBA-special

Another ABBA-special from 1977, dedicated to ABBA-The Movie and ABBA-The Album. This one is from Hitkrant, featuring a lot of great pics.
Already in 1977 there was talk of a musical to be written at some point in the future. It would take another 7 years before that musical would become reality, and then obviously not as an ABBA-project.

The failed interview

The working-title of the ABBA-movie that will open in Holland in December is ‘The Girl With The Golden Hair’. But everyone will probably call it ‘the ABBA-movie’. And that’s what it is: ABBA from start to finish, in all kinds of situations, during live-performances, taking a horse-ride and at a picnic.

It hasn’t been easy for director Lars Hallström to make a movie about the Swedish foursome. But cleverly he chose the right approach: the dream.
It’s the dream of every ABBA-fan: to be in the presence of their idols just once, to talk to them and touch them.

The Australian journalist Robert Hughes has that dream as well, but more for professional reasons: he wants to do an interview with ABBA no matter what, during their Australian tour. But he doesn’t seem to succeed. The cheerful Swedes manage to avoid him and despite several schemes, Robert does not manage to get in contact with ABBA.
For poor Robert there’s not much else to do than escape in his dreams. In those dreams, everything is possible: he meets ABBA, has diner with Agnetha, Björn, Anni-Frid and Benny, takes a horse-ride with the girls and finally gets his much-desired interview.
But like it is with every dream, there’s the inevitable waking up. Gone is ABBA, there’s just Robert Hughes...
Anyway, we will be able to see it all for ourselves; on December 21 we will be at the Hitkrant world-premiere of the ABBA-movie, together with 500 Hitkrant-readers. See you in six weeks!

A new ABBA is born

Four letters: A-B-B-A. The initials of Agnetha, Björn, Benny and Anni-Frid. A household name for millions, from eight years old to eighty, from Melbourne to Moscow. You can write books about ABBA (and that has happened as well), but in this Hitkrant-special we will have to limit ourselves just a little. There are two things we can’t ignore: ABBA now and of course the ABBA-movie.

The ‘ABBA now’ part is very important: the new single ‘The Name Of The Game’ is a five-minute long introduction to a new ABBA. The time of the ‘sweet pop-songs’ seems to be over: this is grown-up pop-music.
“Actually, it wasn’t a conscious decision that we had to come up with something new,” says Björn. “But you are right to say that new things are happening. One thing is for sure: from now on we will definitely pay more attention to the lyrics.”
A lot of hard work has been put into the new album. Also in that respect changes can be heard in the ABBA-pattern: all songs on the record have a connection, like in a musical. That’s also ABBA’s dream: being able at some point to write a musical.
Björn: “Sooner or later that dream will certainly become reality. When it will happen, I don’t know. But our new album is a first step in that direction, it’s a test.”

The release-date of the album will probably be postponed until February, mainly because of Agnetha: she is obviously pregnant and although she’s doing well, the doctor prescribed complete rest for her. There was a danger that the baby – expected to be born on November the 24th – would come too early. That’s why Agnetha has to rest in the new mansion of the Ulvaeus-family in the Stockholm suburb Lidingö.
“I would love the baby to be a boy,” says Agnetha. “Then we would have one of each!” She feels good, but she’s strictly following doctor’s orders: exercise everyday and no smoking!

In 1978, there will probably be no tours for ABBA. Björn: “To be honest, we don’t like it at all. On top of that, we don’t make a profit on it. The only reason to do it is for the fans, and the added factor there is that there will always be a lot of fans who will have to be disappointed, not being able to get tickets!”

ABBA is doing very well. Manager Stig Anderson is expecting a turnover of 30.500.000 Dutch guilders, of which an estimated 23.000.000 is pure profit. Actually, that is the main worry for Stig and ABBA: finding ways to invest all that money!