‘There isn’t a better show that could be outdoors’: Stars of hit musical Mamma Mia! looking forward to Scarborough Open Air Theatre performances

This summer, the feel-good musical Mamma Mia! will be heading to the coast as live theatre returns to the Open Air Theatre in Scarborough.

Mamma Mia! is an irresistibly funny tale of a mother, a daughter and three possible dads on a Greek island – all unfolding to the magic of ABBA’s timeless songs.

The Dynamos, the three leading ladies of the musical, consists of Nicola Swift, who plays Rosie, Sara Poyzer, who plays Donna Sheridan and Sarah Earnshaw, who plays Tanya.

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The Scarborough News spent time with the Dynamos and asked them if they were looking forward to their upcoming performances that mark the return of live theatre to the OAT

Mamma Mia! Dynamos out on Scarborough's South Bay.Mamma Mia! Dynamos out on Scarborough's South Bay.
Mamma Mia! Dynamos out on Scarborough's South Bay.

Sarah Earnshaw said: “I’m really excited, this is the first time I’ve done an open air venue.

“These guys did Harewood House in Leeds, but it’s the first time for me so I’m really looking forward to the different vibe of it and I think at the end when we do the finale, it’ll be a pop concert and make you feel like you’re Lady Gaga!”

Nicola Swift added: “It’s a completely different vibe when you do an open air show. The show lends itself so brilliantly to being outdoors, a lot of the show takes place outside and there is such a party atmosphere.

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“So for us, our first scene together we walk out and we’re supposed to be seeing the vista and the view in front of us and at an open air venue, you can do that.”

Mamma Mia! Dynamos arrive on Scarborough's South Bay.Mamma Mia! Dynamos arrive on Scarborough's South Bay.
Mamma Mia! Dynamos arrive on Scarborough's South Bay.

Sara Poyzer agreed, and said: “The music is live, the band is live and the singing is live so there is a pop element throughout and I think once the overture strikes up, it makes sense for it to absolutely be outdoors. Of course it’s brilliant in a theatre, but there’s an elevated element to it when it’s outdoors.”

“There isn’t a better show that could be outdoors than Mamma Mia!”

The musical is the ultimate ABBA party and is known for its buckets of fun, bringing the Greek isles to the UK and ensuring everyone, cast, crew and audience has a good time.

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Sarah said her favourite part of the musical was when they perform ‘Dancing Queen’ “as it’s the three of us, and we’re trying to cheer Donna up and make her feel better about herself. It’s all about female friendship which is the heart of the show.”

Nicola said that she loves “‘Super Trooper’ which is to do with female empowerment as well.

“It’s the first time all of the women are on the stage together for the hen party and it’s really fun and brilliant, and I love the harmonies.”

Sara said she likes the friendship she's formed with the Dynamos in real life.

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She said: “A lot of people have been to see Mamma Mia! and have said you can really see we’re having a good time because there’s real friendships formed and people talk about us and say we look like friends, well that’s because we actually are, and the audience do pick up on it’s real genuine fun we’re having.”

Mamma Mia! may be about Donna, her daughter Sophie and three possible dads, but it also shows how important female friendships are and Donna, Tanya and Rosie (the three Dynamos) are so unique, people want to see them through the show.

Nicola said: “Women of our age aren’t represented that frequently in musical theatre, and this is a show where you have three women who are supposed to be 40-something being represented in a brilliant, brilliant way and that’s rare.”

Sarah added: “There are three distinct characters as well here and people really recognise themselves as one of the three in the friendship group.”

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Whilst the cast may be looking forward to playing at an open air venue, Sara is looking forward to reminiscing with her husband Richard Standing as he plays her on-stage partner Sam Carmichael and they actually met working together in Scarborough 20 years ago.

Sara said: “We were doing the Merchant of Venice together with Northern Broadside and we were playing lovers in the show, and walked home together afterwards and he said ‘Can I come in?’ and the rest is history.

“We said we’d have to re-visit some of our first dating haunts and rekindle some of those moments. It’s really nice to be back. I love it in Scarborough, I used to come on holiday here as a kid and obviously I met Richard, my partner, here.”

There will be six performances of the musical between Wednesday June 14 and Saturday June 18 2023.

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