A beloved Broadway smash and five-time Tony Award nominee, and the show that resurrected an international wave of ABBA fever will make its area debut when Circa ’21 Dinner Playhouse treats audiences to the singing, dancing, spirited fun of the iconic musical MAMMA MIA! This pop-tune-driven entertainment – one of the 10 longest-running productions in Great White Way history – will electrify crowds at the Rock Island dinner theater through September 15 and is being brought to life by a spectacular cast of Circa ’21 newcomers and venue favorites.
MAMMA MIA! will be staged at Circa ’21 on Wednesdays through Saturdays (including specially added Thursday-night performances) at 7:45 p.m., Sundays at 5:45 p.m., and Wednesday matinées at 1:30 p.m. Ticket prices are $51.98 for the evening dinner-and-show productions and $45.15 for the plated-lunch matinées.
Reservations are available through the Circa ’21 ticket office. For reservations, contact the theater at 1828 Third Ave. in Rock Island or by calling 309-786-7733 ext. 2. Online reservations can also be made by visiting circa21.com.
MAMMA MIA! takes place on a small Greek island where Sophie dreams of her perfect wedding – one that includes her father giving her away. The problem, however, is that Sophie doesn’t know who he is. Her mother, the former lead singer of a 1970’s pop group, refuses to talk about the past, so Sophie decides to take matters into her own hands. Sneaking a peek in her mother’s old diary, she discovers three possible fathers: Sam, Bill and Harry. Sophie secretly invites all three to the wedding, convinced that she’ll know her father when she sees him.  What results in MAMMA MIA! is a funny, touching, and thrilling musical-comedy sensation boasting two dozen ABBA hits including “Dancing Queen,” “Waterloo,” “SOS,” “Take A Chance On Me,” “Knowing Me, Knowing You” and the unforgettable title song.
After opening on Broadway in October 2001, MAMMA MIA! went on to earn Tony nominations in categories including Best Musical and Best Boo]k of a Musical, and finally concluded its New York run in 2015 after 5,758 performances. In 2008, the show also inspired a Golden Globe-nominated movie starring Meryl Streep and Amanda Seyfried, with the long-awaited sequel – Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again – opening in theaters on the same day as Circa ’21’s July 20 opening-night performance.
Making his Circa ’21 directing debut with MAMMA MIA! is Michael Ferrell, Lavender Magazine’s two-time Choreographer of the Year whose stage credits include the musicals Hairspray, The Drowsy Chaperone, Guys & Dolls and Les Misérables. Venue favorite Ron May serves as the show’s music director, with familiar faces in the cast including Circa ’21 veterans Erin Churchill, Kenton Fridley, Jeff March, Jennifer Poarch, Tom Walljasper, Illy Kirven and Michael Penick.
Rounding out MAMMA MIA’s cast are 11 additional song-and-dance talents: Jarrett Bennett, Aaron Heaps, Brooke Myers, Danielle Nelson, Adam Sowards, Danielle Swink, Krysti Wiita, Andrew Wright, and debuting Circa ’21 performer Courtney Groves as Sophie.
Circa ’21’s entire team is thrilled to present the Quad Cities’ first extended run of this exhilarating Broadway wonder, and patrons are urged to make reservations for what is sure to be an incredible summertime stage treat. Call the Circa ’21 ticket office at 309-786-7733 ext. 2 for tickets, and revel in the fun, romance and magic of the ABBA-solutely fabulous MAMMA MIA!
Tess Abney is a freelance writer who was born and raised in the Quad Cities. She spends most of her time attempting to successfully raise three boys. In her free time, writing is her passion. Whether it is sharing local events and businesses with readers or sharing her thoughts on life, she finds comfort in the way words can bring people together.