Welcome to Cruise Critic! If you'd like to participate on our forums by joining in the conversation, please Register Now! Be sure to visit our FAMOUS Roll Call forums, where you can meet other cruisers sailing with you and share a tour or shore excursion and SAVE MONEY!
Ask a Cruise QuestionPost your general cruise questions here.
View Poll Results: What is the future of ship theatres?
Do you think that anyone would design a ship with no theatre?
It uses lots of space, makes some drink sales but perhaps less than other venues.
How do you think they will evolve?
P&O Britannia Jun 14 Norwegian Fjords (7 nights)
Oceania Riviera Nov 14 Monte Carlo to Barcelona (7 nights)
P&O Aurora Oct 14 (3 nights)
Celebrity Equinox June 14 Rome to Barcelona (7 nights)
Norwegian Spirit Nov 13 Spain/Morocco/Arrecife/Madeira (9 nights)
Celebrity Equinox July 13 Venice Redentore Festival (12 nights)
P&O Azura April 13 Zeebrugge and St Peter-Port (4 nights)
Cunard Queen Mary II Nov 12 Beer-n-chocs (4 nights)
Celebrity Silhouette Sept 12 Adriatic from Venice(13 nights)
Cunard Queen Elizabeth May 12 Spring Getaway (5 nights)
Cunard Queen Mary II Oct 11 to Cherbourg (2 nights)
Celebrity Solstice July 11 Barcelona to Venice (12 nights)
Celebrity Eclipse May 11 to Cork (4 nights)
P&O Azura Oct 2010 to Bruges and Le Havre (3 nights)
RCI Independence of the Seas Jun 10 Med (14 nights)
Celebrity Equinox Preview Jul 09 (1 night)
Norwegian Jewel Aug 08 Baltic Capitals (12 nights)
Norwegian Jewel Sept 07 Barcelona to Istanbul (12 nights)
On large ships, I think they stay. How do they evolve? Maybe "premium" extra cost entertainment? If you got rid of them, what revenue generating spaces do you put there? I guess either more cabins or extra pay restaurant(s) and bars/lounges. Or is there something else you could put there instead? Some "out of the box" sort of thing.
Entertainment is a big evening draw for some and the theaters on the ships I have sailed have always been packed. I don't see that changing anytime soon.
__________________ Warm Breezes
Ruby Princess 3/2014 - 5 Night Western -FLL, Cozumel & Grand Cayman-Balcony-Adults only Norwegian Jewel 10/2013 - 7 Night Western -New Orleans, Cozumel, Belize City, Roatan & Costa Maya-Balcony-Adults only...25th Anniversary Carnival Freedom 08/2013 - 6 Night Western -FLL, Key West, Grand Cayman & Jamaica-2 Connecting Balconies-Family + 1 BFF Norwegian Epic 12/2011 - 7 Night Eastern-Miami, St. Martin, St. Thomas & Nassau-2 Insides-Family Carnival Glory 07/2011 - 5 Night Canada-Manhattan, Halifax & Saint John-1 Balcony & 1 Inside-Family Carnival Destiny 11/2010 -4 Night Western-Miami, Key West & Cozumel-2 Insides-Family Carnival Glory 07/2010 - 5 Night Canada-CANCELLED DUE TO DEATH IN THE FAMILY DAY BEFORE CRUISE-Insurance Reimbursed Carnival Freedom 7/2009-8 Night Eastern-FLL, San Juan, St. Thomas, Tortola, Antigua & Nassau-1 Inside-Family Norwegian Jewel 11/2007-5 Night Western-Miami, Cozumel & Grand Cayman-1 Inside-Family Carnival Elation 12/2006-5 Night Eastern-Port Canaveral, Nassau, Half Moon Cay & Grand Turk-1 Oceanview-Family Carnival Inspiration 11/2005-5 Night Western-Tampa, Cozumel & Progresso-2 Insides & 1 Porthole-Family + Extended Family Disney Magic 6/2004-7 Night Eastern-Port Canaveral, St. Thomas, St. Martin & Castaway Cay-2 Connecting Oceanviews-Family + Friends (Family of 4) Disney Wonder 11/2001-3 Night Bahamas-Port Canaveral, Nassau & Castaway Cay+4 Night Disney World- 2 Connecting Insides-Family + Friends (Family of 4)
Existing theatre spaces on existing ships are unlikely to be retro-fitted for any other purpose; however it is possible that charges may be applied for "premium", possibly all, shows. Theatre space on new construction may very well be smaller to reflect reduced demand if charges are applied.
The sad fact is that, like most commercial operations, the never-ending effort to improve the bottom line will result in two ongoing influences: increasing of base fares and miscellaneous charges to improve gross revenue, and decreasing the quality and amount of included amenities to reduce costs.
Six US Navy ships, (1960-1970)
20+ cruises: Furness Bermuda (1), Orient (1), Holland America (10), Norwegian (5), Carnival (1), Princess (1), Celebrity (3), Cunard (1), Royal Caribbean (1) - (1953-2014).
On the cruises I have been on the main theater was also used for daily talks about ports of call, ship functions, and for occasional demonstrations of various topics, including cooking tips, crafts, and, on a few rare occasions, products. On one cruise we attended a discussion and Q & A session about how the theater operates, hosted by the cruise director, and including the choreographer, the director, and the musical director. It was followed by a backstage tour. On another the captain demonstrated the tools used to navigate the ship, and his fellow officers talked about how the ship functioned. Both of these events were well attended and there would have been no other place on the ship to accommodate everyone attending.
I don't see the functionality of the main theater eliminated. It is one of the selling points of a cruise.
Wrinkles will only go where the smiles have been - Jimmy Buffett, My Idol
11/07 Majesty of the Seas, 4/08 Grandeur of the Seas, 1/09 Majesty of the Seas, 9/09 Freedom of the Seas, 11/09 Majesty of the Seas, 4/10 Explorer of the Seas, 10/10 Serenade of the Seas. 11/10 Majesty of the Seas, 2/11 Majesty of the Seas, 11/11 Navigator of the Seas, 3/12 Liberty of the Seas, 11/12 Carnival Pride (never again) , 11/12 Adventure of the Seas (Back to Back), 3/13 Freedom of the Seas, 9/13 Brilliance of the Seas, 12/13 Independence of the Seas, 5/14 Explorer of the Seas, 1/15 Liberty of the Seas
Sure, I have seen some very good shows on board. But in general, they fit the bill for what is stereotyped as cruiseship talent.
So I see a move where bigger names or headliners make an appearance, and yes of course it becomes a pay-extra event. This might make sense in the itineraries where talent can fly in/out from ports along the way. Comedy shows already heading this way.
Or. I see the move towards ultra technical flexible theaters that can host a dancing review, a water Cirque-style show, ice skating, comedy, and a wedding all on the same day. Perhaps not in that order.
But the days of the atypical Welcome Aboard, dance and review, way off Broadway or further off Vegas style shows - I think are seeing a big drop in attendance.
And yes, that is a BUNCH of real estate on a ship. But at $30 Bingo cards, maybe all is just fine the way it is.
I say "they'll get smaller". Case in point: when Carnival converted Destiny into Sunshine just this year, they shrunk the main theater from 3 decks to 2 decks. Then they turned the leftover deck space into cabins. I wouldn't be surpised if new ships were built with smaller theaters right off the bat. It's a shame. Large theaters with ornate ceilings and soaring columns add a lot to the look of the ship.
On HAL ships -- there are different types. On the S and R class ships there is the Wajang Theatre that not only shows movies but is also the Culinary Arts Center.
On the Signature and Vista class -- mixed bag. A couple of the ships have a dedicated screening rooms with only about 36 seats for movies only. Other ships have the Queen's Lounge where movies are shown, Culinary Arts Center and is also used various other activities.
They will stay even though HAL doesn't make any money on them.
__________________ Cruising is a wonderful way to enjoy retirement! Far, far too many cruises to list.
What is the smallest ship that still has a theater? The venues have been quite different in all the ships we have sailed. Some resemble the classic theaters on London's West End and others are more like Vegas night clubs with heavy emphasis on table service. I think the cruise lines will continue to sample various forms in the constant effort to maximize revenue.
Seven times on NCL since 2005, around the horn on Carnival Splendor in 2013 and two years long ago and far away on USS Princeton LPH-5.
I guess we are in the minority among cruisers but it wouldn't bother me in the least if the theaters went away. I prefer the smaller music venues on the ship and have never stayed at one of the shows for more than five or ten minutes after sitting all the way through the show on the first cruise. I've tried but they're just of no interest to me.
I'd love to see them turn that space into something else (or several different something elses).
The only complaints I have heard are regarding smaller theaters not having sufficient space for the evening shows. They are used for many events during the day. I see no change other than possibly the smaller venues expanding.