Well, I can finally say I have experience entertaining on a cruise ship.  My wife and I took a trip on a Carnival cruise over the Thanksgiving holiday.  We boarded the Carnival Victory and took a 5 night trip through the Caribbean.  OK… so I wasn’t actually hired as an entertainer on the cruise ship, but I most definitely entertained.

Your first time entertaining on a cruise ship?

One of the best parts about having a great team of musicians is that all of us at Felix and Fingers come from different backgrounds.  I’ve never played on a cruise ship simply because I never tried to.  After college I spent much of my time acting and singing around Chicago with various theaters and opera companies.  I performed with equity theaters like the Black Ensemble Theatre, and more classical-esque companies like The Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company.   It was the route my life took me for several years until one day I decided to try dueling pianos.  I never though this would be what I would end up doing, but I was good at it, and I have a ton of fun doing it, so now my life is going in this direction!

One of our other player, Mike Potts, does have a lot of Cruise Ship experience.  Before we knew each other, when I was off entertaining Chicago, Mike was traveling the world on cruise ships.  He worked primarily for Royal Caribbean Cruises, P&O Cruises, and Cunard Cruises.  Mike tells me that the Titanic was a Cunard ship.  I’m sure they vastly improved their safety procedures in the last hundred years….

Mike was in the same boat as me.  No pun intended.  He was working on a cruise ship, not fully knowing his Dueling Pianos destiny awaited!

Okay, okay…. How did you entertain?

Cruise ship piano barCruise ship piano bar 2Well, the first night there I went to the piano bar on the cruise ship.  The piano player was hosting a game of “Name that Tune,” a game which Felix and Fingers love to host.  I sat and watched the game, and then I continued to stick around for his actual set after the game was over.  But no…. that’s not where I entertained.  It turns out that there are tons of entertainment options on cruise ships.

Artist Badges Cruise Ship

My totally sweet “Artist” badge.

Aside from the piano bar, there were nightly shows, comedians, and of course, Karaoke.  I don’t love Karaoke, as I’d always rather be supplying the music myself, but I decided to do my specialty, “The Real Slim Shady” by Eminem.  For the rest of the cruise I needed to perform nightly Eminem songs and all over the boat people waved to me and shouted, “Hey Slim!”  I even tried to do other songs, but the DJ would always queue up Eminem instead.  I even got a badge that said, “Artist.”  That’s pretty legit.

Cruise ship goodbye

So sad….

Goodbye Cruise Ship (sung to the tune of “Goodbye Stranger”)

I had a blast on the cruise ship, and I know it won’t be my last time hitching a ride on one.  I hope you enjoyed my ramblings, and if you want get in touch with us, contact us here!





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