(3:45 p.m. EDT) -- Book a cabin on Norwegian Epic, and you might just be spending your vacation with legendary celebrities like Michael Jackson, Tina Turner, Madonna and Frank Sinatra. Don't believe us? It's true! (Well, partly.) During a live Webcast this afternoon, Norwegian Cruise Line revealed two new entertainment shows for its newest ship: a dueling piano show, called Howl at the Moon, and Legends in Concert, a showcase of celebrity impersonators.
This announcement falls right in line with NCL's commitment to offering engaging and interactive entertainment onboard Norwegian Epic. Previously announced shows include the Blue Man Group and Cirque Dreams, a dinner theater and circus show. Think you'll be far from the action, sitting safely in your seat? Not on NCL! A contortionist might do a backbend to present you with a glass of wine, while a man in blue face paint might bring you onstage to bang on a drum or throw paint around.
Now, two more shows have been announced. Like Blue Man Group, these are acts that are already big on land and are now making high-seas debuts. Best of all -- they're free. Here's what you can expect:
Legends in Concert: The longest-running tribute show with 25 years under its belt, Legends in Concert will feature three celebrity impersonators singing and dancing live onboard Norwegian Epic. Six 45-minute shows will be held in the Epic Theater throughout three days of a seven-night sailing, with an additional three performances held in the Manhattan Room supper club. Although the first round of impersonators hasn't been chosen, you might see Elvis, Shania Twain or Britney Spears perform on your cruise. (The executives at today's reveal joked that they might just impersonate Andy Stuart, Executive Vice President of Global Sales and Passenger Services, with his charming English accent.) The show will change every four months so new "celebrities" can take their turn in the spotlight.
Howl at the Moon: The popular land-based dueling piano show will make its at-sea debut on Epic. Two pianists will take over the comedy club Headliners for four-hour performances four times a cruise. As the pianists duke it out with high-energy, foot-stomping renditions of hits from the '70s to today -- including popular requests "Don't Stop Believin'" and "Brown-Eyed Girl" -- cruise passengers can sing along, dance, have a drink and come and go as they please.
With so many entertainment options -- don't forget the six lanes of bowling in two venues, an ice bar and the Fat Cats blues and jazz club -- NCL has also created a new staff position to help keep things running smoothly on Epic. The cruise line's first-ever Entertainment Director, Simon Murray, will oversee all the entertainment venues, shows and kids' programming, while the more familiar Cruise Director (still to be chosen) will remain the face of the cruise, introducing various acts onstage and getting out and about around the ship to make sure people are having a good time.
Fun fact: Simon Murray was featured in the movie "Strictly Ballroom" (an Ozzie favorite of mine from my college days!) and started his cruise career as a ballroom dancer on Orient Lines. He moved on to become a Cruise Director with NCL before taking on the new role of Entertainment Director.
Worried you'll need to cruise with your secretary (or at least your Outlook calendar) to keep all of the events in order? Norwegian is working on a system so passengers can get organized and pre-order show tickets prior to their cruise.
For more information on what's new with Norwegian Epic -- including spa cabins, an aqua park and a noodle bar -- check out our Countdown to Launch page!
--by Erica Silverstein, Senior Editor
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NCL Reveals Epic Entertainment for Star-Struck Music Lovers
November 6, 2009