Thanks for the comments, Myles. Are you in the cruise ship entertainment business? I'll address yours one at a time.
"That's a pretty critical article and I think the expectations are a little overblown. I'll address them point by point from my perspective. On originality, you are correct in that there are some similarities in the shows formats, but the same thing is true on Broadway and the Vegas strip for $$$ a seat."
I disagree, Rent is vastly different from the Producers or Aida. Different songs, stories and production values. In cruise ship shows you are likely to hear the same actual songs from show to show. And every ship has had a "salute to Hollywood" at one time or another. Originality is originality whether they are similar or not. Broadway shows are original, cruise ships shows borrow from them.
"And as for the young people, don't even waste your time. They'll be in one of the dance clubs or lounges.
My contention is that they are not there BECAUSE they don't like the entertainment the ship is offering. What are you saying?That young people don't like entertainment at all? Tell that to the filmmakers in Hollywood.
And hey, don't look now, but reviews are alive and well in Paris, Vegas and New York and probably elsewhere. "
They are alive and well, but proportionately much less than entire plays. I have never seen a "Salute to Broadway" on Broadway. Yes there are "revues" but they usually offer a lot of originality, not a rehash of songs from other shows.
"As far as medleys are concerned, they work pretty well within the time restraints. If you want to hear the full song, go to a concert and pay $$$ for a seat."
I don't even understand why you are saying this. Is there some kind of financial restraint holding the cruise lines back from presenting more than 15 seconds of any one song?
"As far as character development is concerned, go to a Broadway play for a four hour performance. I have other things to do on a cruise besides watching one show all night."
Most Broadway shows are the same length as a movie, not 4 hours. Movies are popular on ships.
"As for talent, that's in the eyes of the beholder. Some acts are good and some aren't no matter where you are. Broadway shows sometimes close in a week at $$$ a seat. Authenticity; all these guys are the read thing whether you like them or not."
This is not true. That is like saying an Elvis impersonator is Elvis. Like I said, I have seen young, freshly-scrubbed white kids singing plantation slave songs. I don't buy it, it isn't authentic, it is antithetical and preposterous.
"You don't like every television show or movie you've watched, do you? I couldn't help but notice you didn't address the variety of entertainment. Was there too much variety for this negative dissertation?"
I addressed variety as the core of my argument. There isn't any, I rest my case.
"I also noticed you didn't mention the ship's orchestra. Aren't they worthy of mention in the entertainment genre?"
On the contrary, most ship's orchestras are very good. I am glad there is still a place for live musicians to find work. They don't pay them enough.
"I'm disappointed that you would use your position for such a one-sided review."
It's an opinion piece. That's what opinion pieces are.
"I'm also surprised that some of the respondents to your review are under the impression that entertainment headliners today cost $25.00 a seat.(add $100.00 or more) I guess they haven't been to Vegas lately. Welcome to the real world."
In NY City a cover charge for a Jazz Club featuring name entertainers is typically $35.
"Now the main point is that people don't book a cruise because of the entertainment. That's just another gimmick to pass the time. People cruise to go somewhere or to get away from somewhere. You might hear them say they booked because of the cuisine, the ambiance or the way they're treated on a particular cruiseline, but I doubt very seriously you'll ever hear someone say they booked a cruise on a ship because of the entertainment in the show lounge."
My point exactly. I wrote the editorial because I was amazed at how out of touch the entertainment departments were with how they believed they were perceived by the cruising public. Most people don't pay attention to a cruise's entertainment, but according to the entertainment heads you would think it was all that cruisers thought about while on the ship.
"I don't know any better way to say it, but there is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Enjoy the rainbow!"
Thanks for your comments. Basically, you are saying "Yes, cruise ship entertainment is mediocre, but so are a lot of things" If you accept that as a standard, then you have made an excellent point.