Spice Girls and the Musicals

Happy National Spice Girl’s Day to all the Spice Girls fans out there! On this day in 1996, the girls released their debut single “Wannabe”. Today, we celebrate the success and achievements of the iconic girl band that taught us about girl power and inspired a generation of young women to follow their dreams.

As we look back on their journey, it’s worth noting that the Spice Girls have dabbled in various forms of entertainment over the years. From music to movies, fashion, and even books, the Spice Girls have left their mark on popular culture.

Even the world of musical theatre was touched by the icons.

Mamma Mia, Cats, Blood Brothers and JCS

Victoria Beckham (Posh Spice) once aspired to become a musical theatre actor and even visited the musical “Mamma Mia!” multiple times in awe. In an interview with Style Magazine, Judy Craymer stated that Beckham expressed her desire to play the White Cat in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical “Cats.”

Mel C (Sporty Spice) actually did conquer the musical theatre stage, with standout performances in Willy Russell’s Blood Brothers in London’s West End and as Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar, touring arenas throughout the UK. But that’s not where the connection ends.

The Lady is a Vamp

In 1997, the Spice Girls released their second studio album “Spiceworld” which included a jazzy musical ballad, “The Lady is a Vamp,” Underrated in so many ways, the number pays homage to influential women of history and includes a very theatrical composition. With this song, the Spice Girls proved that they had more to offer than just catchy pop tunes. “The Lady is a Vamp” showcased their versatility and range as musicians, and it was a testament to their ability to adapt to different genres.

Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida

Following their second album they contributed a song to Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida concept album, which later became the musical Aida. The group recorded “My Strongest Suit” for the album, which showcased their vocal harmonies and pop sensibilities. In Aida, the song is sung by the character of Amneris, an Egyptian princess, and the Spice Girls’ rendition captures the character’s confidence and flamboyance. The album also featured other renowned pop stars, such as Janet Jackson, Tina Turner, and Boyz II Men.

Viva Forever! A New Musical

One of the most interesting and ambitious projects the Spice Girls embarked on was the musical, Viva Forever. Unfortunately, the musical failed to capture the audience’s hearts and closed early, leading to disappointment among Spice Girls fans.

Viva Forever is a musical based on the music of the Spice Girls presented at Piccadilly Theatre in London’s West End. It tells the story of a young girl who enters a talent show and the ups and downs that come with fame and fortune.

What should have been a success, with Jennifer Saunders as writer and Judy Craymer as producer, was short-lived, opening in December 2012 and closing six months later in June 2013. Critics slammed the show for being a poorly written musical with a weak storyline and lacklustre performances. However, fans loved it for its catchy songs, entertaining dance routines, and a great ensemble of performers.

One possible explanation for the musical’s failure is that it tried to cash in on nostalgia and failed to appeal to a wider audience. While fans of the Spice Girls were happy to hear their classic hits, others may have found the show lacking in substance.

Cruel Intentions: The ’90s Musical

So where else do the girls’ hits appear on the musical stage? Well there is Cruel Intentions: The ’90s Musical. This jukebox musical premiered in 2015, and features popular songs from the 1990s. The musical sometimes includes the Spice Girls’ hit song “2 Become 1” as a replacement for Boyz II Men’s “I’ll Make Love To You” in Act 2.  Let’s be honest, what jukebox musical about the 90s could possibly leave out a Spice Girls number? That would be tragic.


Despite its critical and commercial failure, Viva Forever still has a lot to offer. The show’s nostalgia, catchy tunes, bright costumes, and fun choreography would make it the perfect choice for an independent tour or community theatre production – if only they’d release the rights. Here’s hoping. Discussions began in 2017 about a reboot, but there has been radio silence since.

While it may not have been a hit on the West End, Viva Forever has the potential to be a crowd-pleaser in local theatres. Fans of the Spice Girls would love seeing their favourite hits brought to life on stage, and newcomers could be won over by the female empowerment, energy and charm.

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