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What Was The Best Theater Show You've Been To (On A Cruise) And the Least You Liked?


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Don't have a favorite yet, but definitely didn't care for "Saturday Night Fever" on our Liberty sailing several years ago.  Walked out of it after about 30 minutes.

Honestly, I didn't really care much for the whole 70's theme that the cruise directors (some husband and wife team) were pushing throughout that cruise.

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Favorite - We Will Rock You on Anthem 

Least Favorite - I guess I'm not a musical theater person - I usually fall asleep during them 🙂  Embarrasses my wife quite a bit.

As a bonus, the Bon Jovi tribute band "Wanted: Dead or Alive" was also on Anthem (They are from New Jersey) and I went to 2 of the 3 shows they did, fantastic!

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On 6/18/2022 at 6:01 PM, Suite Snob said:

  I liked Mama Mia a lot mainly because I'm a big fan of ABBA.  

I'm a big ABBA fan too!  As a matter of fact, I am going to a Tribute ABBA Band concert tonight 😍.  We are looking forward to Grease next month on the Harmony (I know I will love it); however, I did not care for CATS on the Oasis but my 19 YO Grandson loved it.

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I love Abba but Mamma Mia was boring and just weird an Allure.

I would have to say my favorites are the Aqua shows and I got a feeling the Effectors will rank high when I sail Odyssey and Wonder.

Least favorites are usually the Headliners, they aren't usually as entertaining as I would like.

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I've asked a few of the main theater performers about their career(s).  It's interesting to note that many of them are actually Broadway performers in between gigs.  I've also heard some passengers say that they are B, C, ..... rated entertainers that come from community theaters.  While both may be true, I have always been impressed with the majority of the entertainers.  I think, although I'm not a trained entertainment critique, I can spot the entertainers that are in between gigs from Broadway vs Community Theater.  Either way, I appreciate their effort and enjoy most of their individual performance, regardless of the show.  

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13 minutes ago, Suite Snob said:

I've asked a few of the main theater performers about their career(s).  It's interesting to note that many of them are actually Broadway performers in between gigs.  I've also heard some passengers say that they are B, C, ..... rated entertainers that come from community theaters.  While both may be true, I have always been impressed with the majority of the entertainers.  I think, although I'm not a trained entertainment critique, I can spot the entertainers that are in between gigs from Broadway vs Community Theater.  Either way, I appreciate their effort and enjoy most of their individual performance, regardless of the show.  

I agree the performers work very hard….on Symphony we had the privilege to be invited to an Entertainment Tour for Diamond and higher members. That was our 1st time attending since we actually became Diamond members mid-cruise. It was a very enjoyable time, basically a question and answer session. It’s a great way to kind of see behind the scenes. I absolutely recommend attending if invited….it’s not to be missed!!

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9 minutes ago, SpicyCherry said:

I agree the performers work very hard….on Symphony we had the privilege to be invited to an Entertainment Tour for Diamond and higher members. That was our 1st time attending since we actually became Diamond members mid-cruise. It was a very enjoyable time, basically a question and answer session. It’s a great way to kind of see behind the scenes. I absolutely recommend attending if invited….it’s not to be missed!!

I really missed the "Behind the Scenes Tour" that Star  Class usually get.  But, on Ovation last May (13 - 20), NO tours were being conducted.  Usually we get to go behind the stage, visit with the entertainers if they are rehearsing.  Also, galley tour, and bridge tour.  Zip, nada, nothing!

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37 minutes ago, Suite Snob said:

I really missed the "Behind the Scenes Tour" that Star  Class usually get.  But, on Ovation last May (13 - 20), NO tours were being conducted.  Usually we get to go behind the stage, visit with the entertainers if they are rehearsing.  Also, galley tour, and bridge tour.  Zip, nada, nothing!

I think it’s definitely a Covid thing because I was kinda under the impression that we were going ‘behind the scenes’ and instead, we were seated in the Theatre and the Heads of the different venues(Show, Ice, Aqua) were on stage with the Cruise Director. He started off asking each about their background, then opened it up to the audience to ask questions. Even though I was a bit disappointed that it wasn’t a ‘tour’ in the conventional sense of the word, we really enjoyed the session. 

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10 minutes ago, SpicyCherry said:

I think it’s definitely a Covid thing because I was kinda under the impression that we were going ‘behind the scenes’ and instead, we were seated in the Theatre and the Heads of the different venues(Show, Ice, Aqua) were on stage with the Cruise Director. He started off asking each about their background, then opened it up to the audience to ask questions. Even though I was a bit disappointed that it wasn’t a ‘tour’ in the conventional sense of the word, we really enjoyed the session. 

Yep, it was all related to COVID.  

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I dunno. I liked Cats. 

 

That being said.......I've liked Cats since the 80s. I was taken several times as a child to see it on Broadway; my mom prepared me for it back then so I understood what it was all about (she read me the TS Eliot poems, bought me an illustrated kid's guide, bought me the soundtrack tapes, etc). Seeing it on the Oasis brought back a bunch of great memories of my childhood, my mom....all of that. My 9 year old liked it; but I gave her the background ahead of time kind of like how my mom introduced me. I thought it was pretty faithful to the original Broadway production given the constraints of being at sea (though shorter...which works just fine on a cruise!)

I *totally* get why people don't like it though...it's not your typical musical with a clear plot, etc. It's probably not a good choice for a cruise musical...to potentially enjoy it; you really need to have an understanding of it beforehand. They would be better off going with Phantom, Fiddler, etc, etc. Or perhaps something original! 

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8 minutes ago, Rakaia said:

They would be better off going with Phantom, Fiddler, etc, etc.

Phantom would be wonderful or maybe Les Miserables.....The music alone would make it worth it!! And you are right about getting the background ahead of time. It makes a big difference.

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I'm going to say upfront that YMMV on this and I understand that:

I don't consider being entertained when I have to do my homework to fully understand what I'm about to go see.  Just like I don't think entertainment has to be 'socially redeeming" to be good entertainment.   

There are many great movies out there that are about real history but you don't have to be a scholar or ignorant of history to enjoy the movie.  

 

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18 minutes ago, Suite Snob said:

I'm going to say upfront that YMMV on this and I understand that:

I don't consider being entertained when I have to do my homework to fully understand what I'm about to go see.  Just like I don't think entertainment has to be 'socially redeeming" to be good entertainment.   

There are many great movies out there that are about real history but you don't have to be a scholar or ignorant of history to enjoy the movie.  

 

That's exactly why Cats is a poor choice for a cruise musical. As much as I'm a fan, I get why it is not generally liked and I do think it should be swapped out for something that is more universally pleasing. I'm wondering if they are hanging on to it for so long because they paid for the rights for it for x number of years and they are going to take it right to the end...

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2 hours ago, Rakaia said:

That's exactly why Cats is a poor choice for a cruise musical. As much as I'm a fan, I get why it is not generally liked and I do think it should be swapped out for something that is more universally pleasing. I'm wondering if they are hanging on to it for so long because they paid for the rights for it for x number of years and they are going to take it right to the end...

I've asked this a few day ago - Is Royal doing away with paying for and producing Broadway shows?  I also said that it may be Brand X Cruise lines that I'm thinking about.  I just don't remember clearly.  They were going to write, produce and present their own shows  I remember hearing about this a year or two before the "pandemic".

If so, maybe they are hanging on to the shows, the ancient shows that are still in service because of the "pandemic".  I'm thinking that, again, if so, during the "pandemic" Royal's artistic/creative activities were shut down and haven't produced anything new, yet.  Just a thought.  

 

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9 minutes ago, Suite Snob said:

If so, maybe they are hanging on to the shows, the ancient shows that are still in service because of the "pandemic".  I'm thinking that, again, if so, during the "pandemic" Royal's artistic/creative activities were shut down and haven't produced anything new, yet.  Just a thought.  

 

Effectors, which is a Royal Caribbean original production (theatre show) is live on Odyssey, and Effectors 2 is starting showcases/previews on Wonder. Both concepts were created during the pandemic by the shoreside entertainment team led by SVP of Entertainment Nick Weir. They also created the inTENse aqua show for Wonder during the pandemic.

I recall somewhere that this was the direction they (RC) were heading in. Makes sense at it costs a TON of money to use the Broadway shows.

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3 hours ago, JC Pats said:

Effectors, which is a Royal Caribbean original production (theatre show) is live on Odyssey, and Effectors 2 is starting showcases/previews on Wonder. Both concepts were created during the pandemic by the shoreside entertainment team led by SVP of Entertainment Nick Weir. They also created the inTENse aqua show for Wonder during the pandemic.

I recall somewhere that this was the direction they (RC) were heading in. Makes sense at it costs a TON of money to use the Broadway shows.

Just wondering, what is the story line/what's Effectors all about?  

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9 minutes ago, Ampurp85 said:

From what I read it is superhero based.

That makes me happy.  I loved Superman as a kid, the TV show, I never liked comic books, and the movies.  I also love Transformer movies.  So, a superhero theme is right up my alley.  

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8 minutes ago, Suite Snob said:

That makes me happy.  I loved Superman as a kid, the TV show, I never liked comic books, and the movies.  I also love Transformer movies.  So, a superhero theme is right up my alley.  

Yes, I am excited to see it on Odyssey in Nov. I find the Broadway shows to be hit or miss, so I am really looking forward to something different. 

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I am not a huge fan of any of the big Broadway-esque productions BUT Royals “top notch” entertainment (particularly on the big ships) has been a very big draw and has, over the years, been a source of many new customers.  It’s a double-edged sword though.  Repeat cruisers get tired of the same shows and those big productions are expensive to replace.  I feel sure that this move (away from established productions) is purely a $$ decision.  I totally understand it but wonder if it’s short-sighted.  I guess only time will tell.

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10 minutes ago, 4ensic said:

Grease is my favorite.  It's a toss up between The Book and Cats for least favorite.

Just now saw that Royal is casting for Cats in NYC.  Maybe if we don't feed them they'll go away.

Maybe a letter writing campaign is in order!  It seems that Cats isn't as popular as Royal thinks it is.  At least judging from the responses in this thread!

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My best shows were production shows or special performances by Royal's singers.  

The Headliner Shows have been good, but rarely a "peak experience".  The Oasis Class shows aren't my favorite, although I appreciate the performers.  They are all a little too weird.  Grease was OK.

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  • 1 month later...

 

My friend that I was with had seen CATS before and like so many, did not understand what the play was about. Reazlizing that we would be seeing it again (Feb 2019) She researched the plot and that made a big difference for us. She told me what it was about and knowing the plot, along with the great music, I enjoyed it. 

That alley cat, Rum Tug Tugger (Dale Evans) was so funny and we went back twice just to see his performance. Also, "Grizabella's" performance of "Memory" was very good, although I can't remember the performer's name. But I was most pleased in having discovered Doug Eskew. He played "Old Deuteronomy". WHAT A VOICE! At the same time he was in CATS in the Opal Theatre, he also performed one night in the Jazz venue and this is him below. 

 

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We did notice that the people just behind us, did not return after the intermission. But we, on the other hand, saw it twice on the ship and then when we got home, it was playing at The Fox in Atlanta and we went a third time. I think being prepared as to knowing the plot made a big difference for us. 

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On 6/20/2022 at 9:13 AM, Spang1974 said:

Favorite - We Will Rock You

Worst - Frankie and The Dreamers (We walked out, nobody needs to see a Frankie Vali soundalike perform Eminem, nobody)

Funny, that's exactly what i was going to vote.  I was really looking forward to Frankie and the Dreamers and it was pretty awful because he downplayed the Four Seasons stuff.  We Will Rock You was good. 

Priscilla Queen of the Desert was pretty bad on NCL also. 

I've learned to completely avoid the "entertainer" shows. Magicians, ventriloquists, jugglers, comedians, washed up singers, etc. etc.  Would just rather go hear music in the pubs and clubs onboard.

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