ABBA Exhibition in Stockholm

ABBA - The Museum
ABBA The Museum will open on Tuesday, May 7, 2013!

A big house is being built in Stockholm on the Djurgården island between Liljevalchs Konsthall and Gröna Lund for the "Swedish Music Hall of Fame". This is the home for the permanent exhibition ABBA The Museum planned since 2006. It will be put together from parts of the travelling exhibition ABBAWORLD and more original items from the ABBA members.

Tickets for the premiere week are available from the Swedish railway company's website SJ and via phone +46 771 75 75 75 since Thursday, December 13, 2012. We will keep you informed.

"Thank You For The Music" (2012) at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum

This ABBA mini exhibition was on display at the Music & Theatre Museum from June 15 - November 4, 2012.
It was built with support from Ingmarie Halling and featured a showcase with one of Frida's dresses, Agnetha's stage costume with cape and Benny's vest (all from the 1979 tour). The second showcase included Benny's synthesizer Yamaha GS-1, a bass guitar, a mandoline and four gold/platinum award LPs. In the ABBA Jukebox you could listen to the songs via headphones and watch the video clip or the lyrics. They also had two computers with a little ABBA quiz.

ABBA display at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum ABBA display at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum ABBA display at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum ABBA display at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum ABBA display at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum

The old ABBA Corner (1996 - 2011) at the Stockholm Music & Theatre Museum

The ABBA Corner The old ABBA corner at the Music Museum was part of the permanent exhibition "Ensembler i Sverige" (Ensembles in Sweden), which was opened in February 1996. It was on display for 15 years, making it the longest term museum exhibition featuring ABBA so far.
In January 2010 the museum was expanded to a Music & Theatre Museum and the ABBA Information Computer was replaced by a new system.

Everthing began in 1993 when our German member Klaus-Peter Berg had the idea to organise an ABBA exhibition in the museum with the help of . On his first visit to Stockholm he had been looking for an ABBA exhibition and was surprised that the fantastic achievements of the most successful pop group were not valued at all. So he decided to do something. At that time, he already had definite plans I liked so much that I wanted to help him on the spot. After explaining his plans to me, we wrote a letter to the Music Museum. They were very interested but didn't want to have a big ABBA exhibition as the museum mainly shows instruments.

The museum already had Benny's Yamaha GS-1 synthesizer. Benny told us on February 9th, 1996, that he had mainly used this synthesizer in the seventies to copy songs in the studio. It was one of the first polyphonic synthesizers using magnetic cards to store sound parameters.

Benny's Yamaha GS-1

Björn's guitar One of Björn's guitars was also shown in the museum. It was a Washburn Eagle guitar which was given to him during the Japan tour in March 1980 while ABBA did their last concerts.

Owe Sandström, who designed most of the famous ABBA costumes, provided Frida's blue satin jacket which she wore in 1975/76 (to be seen in the German Musikladen TV show and in the Australian special). Part of it is a little bow tie made of tiny pearls which was typical for the 70s as well as the top. I was very surprised when Owe brought it to me. The colour of the jacket was not a pure blue but more pink now. Owe explained to me that the colours had faded because of the powerful spotlights. Being asked how many costumes he made, he answered that there were at least three of each costume. One had to be there for the performance, the second one was cleaned while the third was already waiting at the next venue.

We put the cover of the '16 ABBA Hits' LP next to the jacket as Frida is wearing the costume on the cover.

In the showcase we had two frames with pictures, the ABBA stamp from 1983 and some single covers from different countries. Klaus-Peter built a smaller copy of the famous ABBA light sign known from the concert tours.
Polygram gave us three golden LPs:
  • The Visitors, Austria
  • The Singles, Germany
  • Super Trouper, Japan
The golden Super Trouper album is especially nice as the Japanese record company wrote a special appreciation on it.

Mono Music provided three big pictures of ABBA in the Polar Studios from 1979 as well as a Scandecor poster from 1977 called 'Limelight'.

Record sleeves and the ABBA stamp (lower right corner)

Frida's satin jacket designed by Owe Sandström

The ABBA Info Computer In the old ABBA Information Computer there was a huge database with more than 1000 ABBA, solo and related records, tapes and CDs, a list of videos and books, lyrics and a short history of the group's success.
You could have a look at most of the record, video and book covers and the computer even included a free ABBA Jukebox with all the ABBA, solo and related music published on CD - more than 1000 selections. New records, books and videos were added to the database every year. Illegal recordings were neither included nor mentioned in the system. A keyword search found all entries matching one or more words and if you picked a song from the track list, you got a list of all records and videos with that song. The computer was operated by a touch screen and you could select Swedish, English or German language.

We want to thank the former director Krister Malm and his team Eva, Anne-Marie, Ulli, Pär, Oskar, Anne-Louise, Bertil and everyone else at the museum for making this ABBA corner possible and helping us to get everything ready for the opening.

Special thanks to Görel Hanser, Jocke Norling and Olle Rönnbäck for their support and for donating most of the CDs in the ABBA Jukebox.

The Music & Theatre Museum (Musik & Teatermuseet) is located at Nybroplan behind the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Sibyllegatan 2.
Open 12 - 17 (summer 10 - 17), closed on Mondays.

Phone: +46 8 519 554 90    
Museum Website

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