The Spice Girls' first album, Spice, sold more than 23 million copies worldwide, becoming the best-selling album by a female group in music history. They have sold 65 million records worldwide with only four albums and twelve singles, making them the most successful British band since The Beatles and the best selling girl group of all time. Measures of their success include international record sales, a 2007/2008 reunion tour, merchandising, record breaking achievements, iconic symbolism such as the Union Flag dress, "Girl Power", a box office hit movie Spice World and their nicknames.
While Marianne Elliott had been on board to direct the upcoming musical inspired by the Spice Girls' success, The Daily Mail reports today that Elliot, winner of a 2011 Tony Award for WAR HORSE, has departed the production. As workshops continue, Paul Garrington (MAMMA MIA) will step in.
As BroadwayWorld previously reported, an agreement was reached with Simon Fuller's XIX company, The Spice Girls, and Universal Music under which Judy Craymer Productions will create and produce VIVA FOREVER. The show aims for an autumn 2012 West End opening.
MAMMA MIA producer Judy Craymer explained earlier this year that "It has a glimpse of the underbelly of TV talent shows, an invented show, and a little bit of comedy romance." She went on to comment, "We live in a world dominated by people wanting to be famous. What they (the Spice Girls) did was before those shows became really what they are, and before the world become slightly obsessed by such shows."
VIVA FOREVER is described as "a modern fable of camaraderie, love and loyalty based on the songs of the Spice Girls." Read the Daily Mail article here.