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Sara Cox hosts ‘Eras: ABBA’ documentary series for BBC Sounds


Sara Cox hosts ‘Eras: ABBA’ documentary series for BBC Sounds

Following previous series’ on Kylie and The Beatles Eras turns its sounds to ABBA…

Available now on BBC Sounds – is Eras: ABBA which tells the definitive story of ABBA in four era-defining chapters. They’re known for their impossibly perfect pop songs, global stardom and a stratospheric revival, but how much do you really know about Sweden’s biggest musical export?

With presenter Sara Cox as the guide and told in the group’s own words through BBC archive and new interviews with experts, insiders and famous fans, this is the story of how Agnetha, Frida, Björn and Benny went from Eurovision hopefuls to era-defining pop icons. Eras: ABBA is a window into the musical genius and sheer perseverance that brought ABBA to their rightful place at the top. Set against their timeless back catalogue, listeners will get to know ABBA like never before.

Contributors include Kylie, Rylan, Dermot O’Leary, Elaine Paige, Paul Gambaccini, Olly Alexander, Mark Gatiss, ABBA historian Carl Magnus Palm, session musician Janne Schaffer, Rod Stephen – creator of Björn Again, ABBA Voyage producers, Ludvig Andersson and Svana Gisla, and its director Ballie Walsh, plus curator Ingmarie Halling, journalist Leif Schulman, costume designer Owe Sandström, Mamma Mia! writer and producer Catherine Johnson and writer Ian Hallard.

Episode one, Eras: ABBAThe Road to Waterloo, explores how ABBA’s lives changed forever when they won the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest, but that the win didn’t come easy. The road to Waterloo was a long one, taking years of hard work and the combination of four world-class talents – each of them already successful in their own right – to pull it off. Sara tells how Björn, Benny, Agnetha and Frida came together to become ABBA and follows their journey to ultimately winning Eurovision, following a number of failed attempts.

Episode two, Eras: ABBA – The Arrival, follows the band as they find their feet after Eurovision when they were almost written off as one-hit wonders. Sara takes a look at how the group pulled themselves back from the brink of obscurity and went on to become global megastars, releasing an ever-growing catalogue of hits and finding legions of new fans a very long way from Sweden.

Episode three, Eras: ABBA – Said and Done, opens in 1979 and, whilst ABBA are one of the world’s most famous bands, beneath the surface things are changing. Sara follows the band’s story to the peak of their career and reveals how, as they released some of their most iconic and sophisticated music, their personal relationships come under incredible strain. The band plays on, but how long can they last? This episode chronicles the beginning of the end for the supergroup.

Episode four, Eras: ABBAThank You For The Music, tells how – after a wildly successful but gruelling decade – ABBA were no more. Their ‘indefinite hiatus’ allowed each member of the group to follow their own path. Nothing lasts forever though, not even endings, as Sara tells the story of a comeback like no other. From pop history’s greatest Greatest Hits, to theatrical smashes, Hollywood acclaim and futuristic entertainment experiences, ABBA are reborn to achieve a truly timeless legacy.

Available now on BBC Sounds. Episodes one and two will be broadcast on BBC Radio 2 on Sunday 7th April (12-1am), with episodes three and four broadcast on the station on Sunday 14th April (12-1am)

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