ELLE reviews Viva Forever!

Is it any good?

Ab Fab meets The Spice Girls in Viva Forever!, a lively new musical written by Jennifer Saunders and applauded by the girls themselves at last night’s London premiere.

After waiting for Victoria, David and the Beckham boys to file into the packed Piccadilly Theatre, the show played out to a crowd of stars including Joan Collins and Joanna Lumley.

Hannah John-Kamen stars as Viva, a young contestant in an X-Factor style show who’s persuaded to ditch her three girl group mates and go it alone.

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Meanwhile her right-on mother and leggy blonde friend stagger around drunk and everyone bursts into Spice Girls songs at regular intervals, with a few necessary lyric changes.

Fans of Absolutely Fabulous will enjoy the cheeky humour, even if it’s slightly watered down for this family-friendly show.

Most of the rousing chorus numbers are left til the end but belting out solos with gusto is Sally Dexter as Simone, a glamorous botoxed judge who’s swapped family life for fame and fortune.

Meanwhile 2 Become 1 is used as an opportunity for a comically clumsy love scene in the superior second half.

With Saunders’ gags and the sparkling singalong finish, this cheerful slice of nostalgia will certainly spice up your life for a couple of hours, if not forever.

Viva Forever is on at London's Piccadilly Theatre now

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