Mamma Mia role a dream for Ballarat Arts Academy-trained actor Sarah Morrison

STAGE: Arts Academy graduate Sarah Morrison fondly remembers her years in Ballarat which put her on the path to one of the lead roles in Mamma Mia alongside co-star Stephen Mahy. Picture: Peter Brew Bevan

STAGE: Arts Academy graduate Sarah Morrison fondly remembers her years in Ballarat which put her on the path to one of the lead roles in Mamma Mia alongside co-star Stephen Mahy. Picture: Peter Brew Bevan

Sitting in the audience of the original version of the Abba-inspired Mamma Mia stage show, Sarah Morrison knew she wanted a career in musical theatre.

That childhood decision saw her leave Brisbane at 19 and drive to Ballarat to study musical theatre at Federation University’s Arts Academy.

And her world has now turned full circle as Morrison plays one of the lead roles in the new Australian production of Mamma Mia, which opens in Melbourne in July.

“Mamma Mia was the first show I saw as a kid, so I remember it very well and it was one of those first key moment when I started to have a real love affair with theatre,” she said.

Morrison plays bride-to-be Sophie – a role she auditioned for last year while starring in her breakthrough role in the lead of Ladies in Black.

“I had three lovely years in Ballarat. It was a huge time in my life, not only going to study what I always wanted to do but … I had to grow up a lot and there was no better place for that than Ballarat.”

Mamma Mia opens at the Princess Theatre on July 10.