ABBA The Museum

Published May 07, 2013

ABBA The Museum, located in Stockholm, opened to the public on May 7, 2013, preceded by a few days of sneak previews, culminating in the gala opening on May 6, attended by Björn, Benny and Frida of ABBA (Agnetha was in London promoting her album A at the time).

ABBA The Museum had a long gestation period, being first announced in 2006 and originally meant to be located in the building now housing the Fotografiska museum in Stockholm. When those plans collapsed, the project morphed into the travelling exhibition ABBAWORLD, opening in London in January 2010 and then followed by stops in Melbourne, Sydney, Györ (Hungary) and Prague.

The intention was always that the exhibition would find a permanent home in Stockholm, which it finally did in 2013, in the brand new building on Djurgården housing not only a hotel and a restaurant, but also the Swedish Music Hall of Fame and its exhibition part, The History of Swedish Popular Music. In 2012, Björn of ABBA stepped in as the main investor for the enterprise; the other members support the museum, but have not invested in it.

ABBA The Museum is an exhibition and interactive experience offering the visitor a journey through the story of ABBA and featuring original artefacts own or worn by ABBA themselves, such as their legendary costumes. The audioguide features the ABBA members themselves telling their story. The interactive part consists of karaoke-style sing-along-with-ABBA booths, the opportunity to perform onstage with a holographic cartoon version of the group, a disco dance floor, and much more.

I contributed the original biographical texts featured in the exhibition, which were also read by actor Stellan Skarsgård in the ABBAWORLD audioguide. These texts have since been developed by the museum, with my work forming the basis (although they are no longer used in the audioguide). I also wrote all the text (uncredited) in the ABBAWORLD book, which has been re-used for the official ABBA The Museum book. I have also written some new texts for the exhibition, in addition to helping out with a bit of fact-checking here and there.

The links to the right, in the MORE INFO menu, will take you to the official museum site, but also to a feature telling you more about the museum and why Björn decided to get involved.