By Linda Coffman
Hard to imagine,
but in the early years of cruising, shipboard entertainment
consisted of little more than poetry readings and recitals that
exhibited the talents of fellow passengers. Those bygone days of
sedate card games in the gentlemen’s smoking lounge have been
replaced by lavish casinos pulsating with activity. Sequined and
feathered showgirls strut their stuff on stage amid special effects
unimagined by our seagoing forebears.
a hapless tap dancer, “the stage moved up & down!”
die hard, though, especially at sea.
For those who yearn for a return to simpler times, there’s
an enduring form of entertainment—the Passenger Talent Show.
relegated to a late-afternoon interlude between Bingo and dinner, or
a featured evening highlight, the Passenger Talent Show is often a
“don’t miss” production. From
pure camp to stylishly slick, what passes for talent is sometimes
surprising but seldom boring.
What type of act do you need to appear on
stage? Polished lounge
singers often anticipate a turn at the mike by bringing along their
own taped accompaniment, while others make do with the ship’s full
orchestra lending a hand. Just
a few memorable past performances include a young girl in a
pageant-style gown singing a show-stopping rendition of I Will
Always Love You; dancers in World War II era finery
jitterbugging to Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy; and a group of
Californians performing a hysterical skit to The Lion Sleeps
Stand-up comedy is generally discouraged;
however, passengers who want their performance skills to be
considered should answer the call for auditions and plan to rehearse
the show at least once. If
you’re a dancer, it might be worth noting that stages at sea tend
to be less than perfectly stable. Notes one hapless tap dancer,
“When we rehearsed, the ship was docked and everything was fine.
Then we sailed before the show and the stage moved up and down!”
Children are often called upon to perform in
passenger talent productions. During cruise camp they practice
skits that highlight amazing creativity and present photo
opportunities for their proud parents. And,
not to be outdone, your ship’s crew might present a show featuring
the music and culture of their homelands.
If you find the show lounge stage a bit
intimidating, but still want to perform,
look for the ever-popular karaoke
in a more intimate lounge setting. Singing
along in the piano bar is another shipboard favorite.
For competitive spirits, your ship may even have auditions
for such events as lip-synching and dancing as a music legend on
Carnival Cruise Lines. Princess Cruises offers the opportunity to
unleash your inner-American Idol in Princess Pop Star.
like fun, doesn’t it? Polish
up your dancing shoes, pack your background CD music, and prepare to be a
star at sea.