image sourceAnders Hanser Publishingimage captionThe Swedish band are one of the biggest pop acts of all time.
Pop group Abba have teased a major announcement for next week, as fans await their first new music in 39 years.
The Swedish band launched a new website on Thursday morning titled "Abba Voyage", asking fans to register interest in a new project.
It is expected to be a long-gestating "hologram tour" that Abba initially announced in 2016.
The band are also expected to release five new songs to accompany the show.
Join us at https://t.co/AAFQLIrqJu #ABBAVoyage pic.twitter.com/7LYw3kojzB
— ABBA Voyage (@ABBAVoyage) August 26, 2021
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The quartet – Agnetha Faltskog, Anna-Frid Lyngstad, Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson – returned to the studio in 2018, promising two new songs later that year.
Those tracks, I Still Have Faith In You and Don't Shut Me Down, have been repeatedly delayed – and the band are now planning to release five tracks to thank fans for their patience.
Earlier this year, Ulvaeus confirmed the music would "definitely" come out this year.
"It's not a case any more of it might happen, it will happen," he told The Herald Sun.
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The Abba Voyage website was launched on Thursday morning, featuring a cryptic image of four glowing planets, accompanied by the date 2 September.
According to The Sun, the show will involve "Abba-tars" of the stars performing hits like Waterloo, Dancing Queen and Mamma Mia.
It said the holograms will be beamed onstage in a purpose-built east London theatre, where fans will also be able to see a documentary-style film on the band's comeback.
Speaking to the BBC during the early stages of the show's production, Ulvaeus said the idea had been presented to the band by Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller.
"He came to Stockholm and he presented this idea to us that we could make identical digital copies of ourselves of a certain age and that those copies could then go on tour and they could sing our songs, you know, and lip sync. I've seen this project half-way through and it's already mind-boggling."
Filming for the project reportedly took place at London's Ealing Studios last year.
BBCAbba in numbers
1972 – 2021
9number one singles
9number one albums
31weeks at number one (UK singles chart)
57weeks at number one (UK album chart)
30mglobal sales of Abba Gold
Source: BBC / Official Charts Company
Formed in 1972, Abba were essentially a Swedish supergroup, consisting of songwriters Ulvaeus and Andersson from The Hep Stars and singers Faltskog and Lyngstad, who had scored success as solo artists.
But their joint project completely eclipsed their previous work. After winning the Eurovision Song Contest with Waterloo in 1974, the band sold almost 400 million singles and albums around the world.
Mamma Mia!, the musical based on their hits and produced by Ulvaeus and Andersson, has also been seen by more than 50 million people.
During their most successful period, the band survived marriage break-ups between Ulvaeus and Faltskog, and Lyngstad and Andersson, but they finally called it a day in 1983.
Their final recording sessions, in 1982, produced the hits Under Attack and The Day Before You Came, which featured on the compilation album The Singles.
Their last public performance came three years later, on the Swedish version of TV show This Is Your Life, which honoured their manager Stig Anderson.
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