Call this unprecedented: sometime around 10 p.m. during the Tony Awards’ three-hour broadcast Sunday (airs at 8 p.m. Eastern on CBS), the camera will move out of Manhattan’s Beacon Theater and onto the Caribbean Sea aboard Royal Caribbean‘s Oasis of the Seas for a snippet of “Hairspray.”
Indeed, we can hear the dropping jaws of skeptics (and hey, we’re occasionally among ‘em) who’ve long derided cruise-ship entertainment as mediocre productions aimed at captive audiences. Royal Caribbean, since it launched the musical “Hairspray” on its Oasis of the Seas in 2009 (and has since followed up by introducing “Chicago” on Allure of the Seas, a sister ship) has been a modern maverick when it comes to introducing more sophisticated fare.
And it’s by no means alone. In the 1970’s and 1980’s, Norwegian Cruise Line gamely featured “Hello Dolly” and “A Chorus Line” onboard its SS Norway flagship, and today it features hip and trendy acts like Blue Man Group. Disney‘s produced-for-cruise extravaganzas like “Aladdin” and “The Golden Mickeys” also exceed the norm.
But having your onboard musical production featured on The Tony Awards? Well, that’s a different league altogether.
We’re heading to New York Sunday night to attend the glittering event and catch a peek — like everyone else watching — at this historic cruise industry event, taking place someplace between Florida and Haiti. Want to come along? Cruise Critic’s Ashley Kosciolek will be on-hand tweeting her impressions. Follow us (@cruisecritic), or follow along at #BroadwayAtSea.
And chime in below to let us know if you’ve seen a really great show onboard a cruise ship — and which production you’d like to see on your next cruise.
Check out our picks for evening entertainment at sea.
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