Porthole’s Five Faves
Enjoy the Show
Five Favorite Performances at Sea
There’s something about that moment when the lights go dim, the audience hushes, and the curtain rises. Sometimes you might even forget you’re on a cruise ship. But make no mistake. From Broadway-style shows and world-class musicians to hilarious comedy acts and amazingly talented performers, today’s cruise ship entertainment deserves a standing ovation. Here are five of my faves.
Toy Story: The Musical
You can imagine that any kind of entertainment that comes from Disney is going to be darn good. So it’s no surprise that one of my all-time favorite shows at sea is Toy Story: The Musical, which you can see aboard Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Wonder. Seeing Buzz, Woody, and all the classic toys come to life on stage will elicit emotions from all ages in the audience, whether or not you’ve seen the movie. Add a score that includes original songs plus the signature “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” plus amazing props and high-tech sound and light, and you have a great combo for evening entertainment.
AquaTheater dive shows
Nowhere else at sea can you see daring high divers plunge into a nearly 20-foot-deep pool below other than aboard Royal Caribbean International’s Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas. You’ll be in awe of the divers and acrobats who pull off a series of aquatic stunts against a backdrop of backlit fountains, big screens, and, of course, the open ocean. By day, take a dip in this aft pool; at night, grab a seat in a one-of-a-kind aquatic amphitheater for one of several shows performed in this unique venue.
Blue Man Group
From New York to Las Vegas to … Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Epic, the lively Blue Man Group knows how to entertain an audience. They don’t speak and they won’t crack a smile, but the three blue-faced performers manage to use comedy, techno music, paint and other props, and — be warned — audience participation to entertain the crowd during a high-energy show unlike any you’ve ever seen.
If you like Cirque-style acrobatic shows, you’ll love the one aboard Celebrity Cruises (on select ships). In fact, you’ll find yourself often holding your breath. From aerialists to contortionists, these performers will simply amaze you by what their bodies can do — while the ship is moving, mind you.
Carnival Cruise Lines launched an unprecedented concert series this year with a total of 49 performers signed for 2014. Carnival LIVE concerts take place aboard various ships docked in Cozumel, Nassau, or Catalina Island, California. Tickets range from $20 to $40 (with VIP ticket prices from $100 to $150, which adds meet-and-greets, photo ops, and seating in the first three rows). Music lovers will agree that you simply can’t beat the intimate venue of a ship’s lounge. Upcoming performers include Styx, Daughtry, Jewel, REO Speedwagon, Lady Antebellum, LeAnn Rimes, and more.
—Jodi Ornstein, Porthole’s Editorial Director