Tonight's christening ceremonies for the Disney Fantasy were nothing short of extraordinary. The evening's fantastic entertainment sampler in the Walt Disney Theatre was emceed by none other than Neil Patrick Harris, and Paul Motter and I had front row seats. NPH (Neil's shorthand alias) played to the crowd with his usual wit and stage craft, introducing tastes of the Fantasy's three headline shows.
The audience was satiated by the increasing roster of talent as NPH introduced New York staples, comedian Jerry Seinfeld and Broadway superstar Heather Headley. Jerry performed a 10 minute stand-up routine of fresh material which proved his comedic skills are still as sharp as ever. At one point Neil even "stumbled across" New York City mayor, Michael Bloomberg, in the audience. Then Heather sung a medley of three Disney classics before coming back to round out the stage entertainment with a soaring rendition of "When You Wish Upon a Star."
Afterwards, the ships' atrium was filled with guests anticipating the ship's actual christening. To introduce the ceremony, Bob Iger, CEO of the Walt Disney Company, and Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, enlisted Mickey – now with a fully articulated mouth – to escort the ship's godmother, Mariah Carey, to the stage.
After the usual pleasantries, and a triple note a cappella tune from Mariah, we were shown a live video feed of the outside of the ship where her husband Nick Cannon and Minnie Mouse stood at the ship's bow. At Mariah's count, Minnie smashed the bottle of champagne onto the steel of the Fantasy's hull. And with that, streamers and confetti showered the cheering crowd.
It was a magical night in typical Disney fashion that finished off with a wonderful dinner and an opportunity to explore the ship's many nightclubs and bars.
And now some photos to whet your appetites as well...
Jason and I were together in New York for this event - nice pictures Jason!!
We were sitting in the front row and had a bird;s eye view for the christening by Mariah Carey.
Yes - she does cruise often, we hears from one of the disney PR heads who told us she had been on a few Disney cruises - she is a big fan of Disney cruise line in particulart, which was the reason she was selected.
Great ceremony - and a beautiful ship.
Although it has been said Fantasy is a little "plainer" than Disney Drean because the decor is more subdued, what it lacks in ornate decor it certainly makes up in features:
The added features are there because Fanatsy is designed to do 7-day cruises, rather than the 3 and 4-day cruise Dream is scheduled to sail. Therefore, they needed more activities to keep the cruisers entertained for the extra days.
It has a more elaborate Midship Detecive Agency game for the interactive artwork. The game is TOO much fun to play - with magic looking glasses that become different tools like blow torshes, wrenches, hammers, etc (all virtual).
The new dinnertime "show" in Animator's Palate is just too much fun - you get to see your own drawings come to life on the big video screens around the room. (This is in addition to the other show where Crush comes and talks to everyone, the only show on Disney Dream).
There is a new Production show called "Wishes" with a definite newer vibe to it, with modern "hiphop=style" music production and "robot" choreography. This is not "When you wish upon a star" - although it has the same values, it is very modern in execution.
The adult area is completely different, including a new Skyline var where the cityscape changes several times per night, and a feabd Irish Pud (O'Gills) with a delicious sipping liquer which I can't say is like Bailewy;s but better.
There are also added kids features, especially a water soak area. All together, a very fun ship.
AND A FANTASTIC CEREMONY!
I am the editor, but I also speculate, ask questions and play devil's advocate. I reserve the right to change my mind.
I have a feeling that tomororw night (Monday night) I am going to have a hard time sleeping. Considering that I have to be up by like 230am or so to get ready and make sure I am at Downtown Disney by 330-345am to be ready to board a bus at 4am to head out to Canaveral. I promise to take as many pix as the available light allows me to.
Disney Dream - Dec 2012 4n Bahamas
Carnival Imagination - Dec 2011 4n Western
Carnival Imagination - Nov 2010 4n Western
Costa Atlantica - Dec 2009 7n Eastern
My opinions are mine and mine alone. They do not represent the opinions of The Walt Disney Company nor any of its subsidiaries.