Spice Girls reunion
The new West End musical “Viva Forever” is a dream come true for fansBy Pam Pastor
Philippine Daily Inquirer
While I was relishing my post-concert high after the New Kids On The Block/Backstreet Boys show earlier this month, I told anyone willing to listen: “You know what would make this experience complete? If the Spice Girls had a reunion.”
I must be psychic. Because a few days ago, the Spice Girls found themselves making headlines once again, as they reunited in London to launch “Viva Forever,” a new musical that will feature their songs.
Emma Bunton said, “For us, having our songs in a musical is just a dream come true.”
The show is produced by Judy Craymer, the woman behind the worldwide hit “Mamma Mia!,” and written by award-winning writer and comedienne Jennifer Saunders. Jennifer, who once spoofed the Spice Girls in the mock band The Sugar Lumps, says the Spice Girls begged her for years to join them. (If you’re a “Friends” fan, you’ll recognize Jennifer as Andrea Waltham, Emily’s mom. Yes, she was the bitchy British woman who told Phoebe “I’m bored with you now” and hung up on her.)
Jennifer said, “I haven’t got bored of listening to any single song.”
The musical wouldn’t be about the Spice Girls’ meteoric rise to fame. But while the show wouldn’t be biographical, it will echo the same sentiments of empowerment the girls stood for during the height of their band’s success.
“We’re introducing a whole new generation to Girl Power,” said
Victoria Beckham at the press conference held at the St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel. Spice Girls fans will find the hotel familiar—that’s where the girls filmed their debut music video “Wannabe” in 1996.
Wannabe is one of the songs that will be featured in “Viva Forever.” The show will explore the world of overnight celebrity and take audiences on a journey with Viva, a girl in pursuit of stardom, her friends who share her dreams and her mother.
“Fundamentally it’s about a girl and the strength of her friendship. It’s also about a mother who is learning, after twenty years, how to be a mother. And it’s also about the world of celebrity, the world of famous people,” said director Paul Garrington in the launch video.
Fans wouldn’t get to watch Geri, Emma, Melanie B., Melanie C. and Victoria in the show—but the girls are assuring audiences that the musical’s stars will give justice to their hits.
“They sing it better than us,” said Melanie Brown.
Melanie Chisolm said, “We couldn’t have hoped for the show to turn out any better. It’s incredible. We’re sure you won’t be disappointed.”
Although I wish I could watch the girls onstage, I’ll take my dose of Ginger, Scary, Sporty, Baby and Posh any way I can.
Geri Haliwell said, “It’s a great year for Britain—we have the Jubilee, the Olympics and the Spice Girls musical!”
I want to watch “Viva Forever.” Yeah, that’s what I want, what I really really want.
Viva Forever will open at London’s Piccadilly Theater in December (previews begin in November). Follow @VFmusical on Twitter.