I have travelled to over 30 countries and 5 continents, including Antarctica, while having my dream job: singing and performing! I am a part of the production cast (of 12) , as well as the vocal captain for the other 5 singers. I do other small duties on the ship for the entertainment department but overall I work on average less than 3 hours a day, and get paid way more than I would on land to sing. It’s a unique lifestyle that combines traveling, performing, customer service, getting along with 50+ other nationalities on board and more. Ask me anything!

Proof: https://ibb.co/LPNQNjr

Comments: 456 • Responses: 65  • Date: 

sadolddrunk244 karma

What (if any) aspects of producing/putting together a performance for a cruise ship are notably different than doing the same sort of show in a more conventional venue?

Serwyn_408 karma

The biggest difference is that the shows are mainly catered towards an older audience. So mostly songs from the 50’s-70’s

[deleted]109 karma


Zkenny13147 karma

That's why it works so well. For 99% of people regardless of age if you preform Grease well they will be thrilled.

Serwyn_62 karma


Serwyn_43 karma

Yeah I actually love the music from those time periods! Working on cruise ships has given me a much wider repertoire of music

kingdazy135 karma

I feel like you job, and cruise work in general, must be one of those things that's one the one hand utterly amazing, and on the other, a complete mindfuck.

do you work on more than one cruise ship? (or have you?) is there "choice" lines that everyone wants to work on? (like those year+ long 'round the world cruises?

we all see and read horror stories about cruise guests, and it seems to differ depending on the ship, company, cruise theme. do you find some cruises to be absolutely wonderful, and others to be a complete nightmare, depending on the set of guests?

Serwyn_188 karma

What I have learned about cruise ships is that you either love the lifestyle or hate it. It provides amazing opportunities to travel and see the world, as well as interact with people from countries that I would never have been able to meet otherwise. On the other hand, it has a strict hierarchy, rules, days of homesickness and frustration with language barrier/culture clashes. You have to be prepared for your schedule to change on a dime, to do duties you didn’t sign up for, and to just be patient with people overall.

I, myself, have worked on one cruise line but two different ships. I don’t get to choose where I go. The casting department puts me where they need me to go. I don’t think that there is necessarily a better or worse cruise-line for singers, just what the individual prefers. For example, I work on a smaller ship so I don’t perform every night but instead I do other entertainment duties such as hosting games during the day like golf, table tennis, etc. On bigger ships you would most likely not have any other duties but to perform, but you would do two shows a night.

I have definitely noticed that some groups of guests are easier than others and some cruises you really click with more than others. There are always amazing people and, yes, always assholes too. Luckily more of the former than the latter. It think specifically because we are a luxury line, sometimes the guests can be a bit snooty.

Dr_Doctor_Doc58 karma

How do you feel about the exploitation of workers from other parts of the world? (Subcontinent)

7 days a week working grueling shifts in the kitchen for example?

As an entertainment cast member, you get a nicer cabin and a steward right?

Does the ‘magic’ that happens in the passenger area fade at all for you when you look at what happens below deck 4 / 5?

Serwyn_155 karma

It’s truly awful how the other departments are worked and how little time off they get. I know firsthand because I met my boyfriend who I met on ships and works in the bar department hardly can get more than a few hours off at a time when he isn’t sleeping. I don’t think that it should be legal to work people like that in my opinion. I definitely know how privileged I am to have such an amazing job when I am surrounded by people who are not as fortunate and are mainly just trying to get money for their families back at home.

Geminii2716 karma

It provides amazing opportunities to travel and see the world

How much of the various countries do you actually get to see? I presume there's at least some port time here and there, but what opportunities are there on top of port city visits?

Serwyn_6 karma

It is great for seeing cities close to the port. In my job I get most mornings and afternoons off to see the port. I never get to see any port in depth because of the limited time in port though unless it’s an overnight. We had three days in Istanbul in a row which was a rare treat because it gave a lot more time to explore places not close to where we docked

_________FU_________122 karma

My brother was a piano player on a cruise ship. He got kicked off for getting super drunk.

What’s your favorite “and that was the last time we saw them” stories?

Serwyn_183 karma

Yup same exact scenario just happened at the beginning of my contract and we were without a pianist for 2 months. It sucked. Unfortunately alcohol is very cheap on ships but even a little bit can send you home if you’re breathalyzed.

There was a woman in the string quartet who allegedly slept with a guest and she just disappeared one day. We have a LOT of people go home for breathing over the limit on random alcohol tests. I’ve heard a few stories about people who missed the all aboard time and the ship sailed without them. That’s an automatic bye bye too

RedDwarf02268 karma

Can you not drink at all during the whole trip?

Serwyn_22 karma

So because part of the production cast’s job is to socialize, we actually get a stipend of $150 each month to get drinks in guest areas in case the want to spend time with us in a bar area etc. So it’s a little bit a part of our job. But despite that, we can be fired if we are tested and over .05 while off duty or .04 while on duty. Basically there’s a culture of, “we know everyone goes over that limit but unless you’re clearly drunk while on duty, or doing something rowdy, we won’t test you”. What gets people is the random alcohol tests every month at 10 am where people are still drunk from the night before. Honestly drinking is a huge part of ship life because of how cheap alcohol is in crew bar. It’s like $1.50 per drink

RealLADude88 karma

What did you experience when covid hit?

Serwyn_255 karma

I just started my contract after Covid had started to die down. There were still heavy safety restrictions in place though. So the whole crew had to wear masks all day and the guests would have to wear them in certain ports. The crew were tested monthly for Covid and any sort of symptom quarantined you for 5-10 days. It slowly loosened over time. The most interesting thing I noticed that was when they took away the mask policy, the guests became so so much nicer to us instantly. I think maybe they viewed us less like human beings when they couldn’t see our full faces. Also it was so weird how I never saw the bottom of people’s faces for 7 months into a contract where you’ve been seeing the same people all day every day. Then suddenly one day everyone took them off and it was seriously weird. I had imagined some of the bottom of their faces so differently in my head 😅

ReadingRainbowRocket59 karma

Did you watch Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and the plot of Titus singing on a cruise ship with Dionne Warwick?

If not, you should.

Serwyn_34 karma

No I haven’t! Thanks for the rec, it is going on my list!

BringMeInfo51 karma

What are your accommodations like?

Serwyn_141 karma

My first ship I shared a guest room with another performer. It had a window that was blocked by a lifeboat so most guests wouldn’t want it anyway. This contract I have what we call a “Jack and Jill” where I have a small single room connected to another by a shared bathroom. The room is pretty small though. A small closet that is half shelves so I can’t even hang my dresses all the way down and some drawers under my bed. We keep our suitcases in the dressing room to save space. I have a small desk, a small tv, and a sink that I don’t have to share as well. My boyfriend sleeps with me in my single bed even though he has his own cabin and it can get very squished at night

PlatoPirate_0190 karma

Y'all don't hot rack like we did in the navy? :) Great ama thanks for sharing.

(Hot racking is when two people share the same small bed but on different shifts.....so the bed is always warm)

Serwyn_60 karma

That sounds terrible! Thank goodness no 😅

PlatoPirate_0133 karma

What about calling people "rack monsters"? It's when you snuck a nap in, the. Immediately got called to a meeting and you have bedlines all over your face and bedhead :)

Serwyn_23 karma

Lol nope! Never heard of that. Have you heard of getting “Banana”? Like when you do something wrong and you get “banana” from your boss

PlatoPirate_0110 karma

I have not!

Serwyn_19 karma

My guess is that expression, a long with a lot of cruise ship crew slang probably come from the people who don’t speak English as a first language. It’s very funny

HollowPsycho31 karma

I don't know what your boss giving you "Banana" means, but it sounds like it would result in a lawsuit in the US.

Serwyn_3 karma

😅that was my first thought too when I heard it. It just means that they give you shit for something; scold you.

_jeremybearimy_20 karma

Does your boyfriend also work on the boat or is it more of a +1 situation? I guess he also works there if he has his own room?

Serwyn_88 karma

Yes he is a bartender from Montenegro. I met him on my first contract and we’ve been following each other around the world since. After our first contract I lived with him in Montenegro and he’s currently trying to get an American visa to visit me after this contract is over. Fingers crossed for us!

WelcomeToAmericaInc29 karma

I own an immigration services business. Let me know if you have questions

Serwyn_2 karma

Thank you so much!

craise_finton_kirk50 karma

This is one of the most interesting AMAs I've read! Thanks for doing it! My question is: do you stay on the same ship for the entirety of its cruise or can you "boat hop" (for lack of a better term) at different ports?

Serwyn_66 karma

Thanks so much! Yes we are contracted as a 12 person cast together. We rehearse for 1 month on shore together and then all travel to the ship and stay for the entirety of our contract on the same ship. It’s nice having a set group of people that you are comfortable with and we all become fast friends. I’m lucky I’ve only had great people so far

icedt4849 karma

Have you had any scary weather or safety issues?

Serwyn_132 karma

Weather wise, nothing crazy other than some pretty rocky nights which gave me bad sea sickness. There was a sad incident where a woman fell overboard. Rumor has it that she was drunkenly dancing on her balcony table and tripped. We had to turn the boat around to look for her. They found her the next day but unfortunately she did not survive. That was definitely the craziest thing that happened during my contracts

cowboywhale943 karma

Are the dishes still Versace brand in the main dining hall? This was a funny detail in the Nautica around 07.

Serwyn_46 karma

Hahaha yes! I thought that was so funny when I saw that too! Never even knew Versace made plates before then

Ok-Feedback560438 karma

Tell me your experience of Antarctica visit?

Serwyn_123 karma

Wow was it was the highlight of my contract! To be honest it’s never even been on my radar of things I thought I would ever get to do. But man am I so glad we went there. Everything was so gorgeous, going past glaciers, whales surfacing every few minutes, penguins swimming past in groups, seals laying on icebergs, just so much to see. We didn’t get to go on land as crew and even the guests had to have special passes to go on shore so most didn’t get to either. Most of the guests and crew just stood outside on the deck the whole day even though it was cold, just watching the scenery. 100% recommended

Sufficient_Debt861535 karma

Would u be expected to sing in a lifeboat?

Serwyn_45 karma

Lord I hope not

FlattopMaker35 karma

how does your performance clothing get washed?
how many performance outfits do you have per cruise?

Serwyn_92 karma

We have a wardrobe supervisor who stays with us the entire contract. They do any fixes, washing and upkeep for our costumes, shoes, and wigs. I have four shows. The Broadway show we have 2 changes per person. One show has 6 costumes and 6 wigs (nightmare quick changes, that one), one we have 6 costumes, and the last one we have 2 costumes. So overall probably about 16 costumes per person (plus two extra per person for two little shows we call the bumpers) so I think they would be 216 costumes total.

freeze4534 karma

What is the pay like?

Serwyn_100 karma

I personally get paid about $4,300 a month with taxes already taken out. That includes my salary bump for being a vocal captain. The average production cast singer will get $3,800 with no other duties. The dancers get paid much less though for some silly reason. Entertainment I think is one of the higher paying jobs on cruise ships, other than the officers or higher ranked bosses who have worked for a while to get that salary. Im sure it can range on other lines but we also get a little more than average because we do other entertainment duties like hosting games, socializing, etc.

tacknosaddle22 karma

On a related question do you have a home on land or have you cut that cord? I'd guess that since you're always traveling it might be nice to take a break and just be somewhere comfortable and familiar for a while.

It seems like you could either not have a "permanent" home if you have friends and family you can stay with when you're taking a break from it or you could set your place up as a furnished apartment where you could keep it available for your breaks from work.

Serwyn_61 karma

I got this job pretty soon after graduating from college so I never had my own apartment to have to cut ties with. All my stuff is back home with my parents in my old childhood bedroom so that’s where I spend my breaks as of now. I plan to eventually get my own place that I can sublease while I’m away, as a lot of people do on ships.

UnePetiteMontre18 karma

Holy hell, you're paid higher than me as a Canadian software developer. How many hours a day are you working, and how many days per week? Dang, I need to change occupation I think.

Serwyn_70 karma

It’s kind of hard to calculate how many hours a day since it’s so sporadic. So here’s a typical 10 day cruise schedule for me

Day 1: Embarkation duties- 4.5 hours, Welcome aboard show- 1.5 hours

Day 2: Show #1- 3 hours

Day 3:

Day 4: Duty 1 (sports day)- 4 hours

Day 5: Crew Drill- 1 hour, Party set- 1 hour

Day 6: Party set- 1 hour, Show #2- 3 hours

Day 7:

Day 8: Duty 2 (shore excursion assist)- 3 hours, Show #3- 3 hours

Day 9: Prize Redemption- 1 hour

Day 10: Show #4- 3 hours

(Shows are about 50 minutes long but I’m including rehearsal and prep time with costumes hair and makeup)

So I’d say about 30 hours spread out across 10 days, an average of 3 hours a day. Also the contracts are not year round. Usually 6 months at a time so unless I find a job right away I’m not making money for several months out of the year at the same rate. But then again I am saving money on rent and food, etc.

It’s a great gig, I won’t lie.

cubert7310 karma

How much time do you spend on your own doing vocal warmups or drills?

Serwyn_2 karma

That factors into the rehearsal time. We set aside about 30 minutes each show to warm up physically and vocally. Singers warm up physically for 15 minutes out of that time

CaptnUchiha3 karma

Probably a silly question but do they give you access to free WiFi? Is it a separate one than the customers use?

Serwyn_4 karma

We get free WhatsApp and Facebook messenger. Everything else is $5 per 60 minutes of internet. And it’s very slow internet that won’t even play YouTube videos. We get used to downloading a bunch of shows and movies before getting to the ship and in ports with good WiFi

EJDsfRichmond41511 karma

Is your room and board included? $4300 is your take home pay?

Serwyn_41 karma

Yes, we pay nothing out of pocket for anything other than what we buy in crew bar or the boutiques and what we choose to spend on land.

Bananaleak23 karma

Have you ever hit a point where you just wanted to quit. Maybe because of the nature of being on the ship, interactions with people, or being asked to do something outside of the job description?

Serwyn_58 karma

Not yet! I personally love ship life and the freedom it offers me. I only ever have to socialize on my duty day which is every fourth day. Sometimes it’s hard getting out of bed on an early morning for cabin inspection or drill but it’s never gotten to a point where I genuinely dislike being there. I have a very good life here, especially compared to the other departments on the ship. I can see new places every day while doing what I love and saving up money! It’s a win win win for me! I’ve never felt such fulfillment and joy than I have while working here

icarus_flies23 karma

How often do you sleep with the guests?

Serwyn_92 karma

Never! That is an immediately fireable offense. Plus I have a boyfriend onboard so personally I have never even been tempted to. That and the average guest age here is 70+

icarus_flies8 karma

Dang, fireable offense, that seems harsh. What is it like mingling with guests, does it get tiresome eventually?

Serwyn_51 karma

Yes it definitely becomes tiring. Especially since socializing is built into our schedule as a part of our duties. Sometimes you feel like you’d rather jump into the ocean than talk to another guest but most guests are overwhelmingly nice and genuinely interested in talking to you. The frustrating parts are usually when they mistake me for another department and start complaining about their WiFi, food service, etc

yaboygetbuckets4 karma

ooh sounds like you might be on celebrity or holland

Serwyn_18 karma

Nope! I’m on Oceania, which is under the umbrella company of Norwegian

Justadropinthesea10 karma

Hi! I just wrote on another sub that I am taking Oceania to Alaska in August. Can you clue me in what ‘ country club casual ‘ means as far as dress code for women? I’m thinking that it will be cold in the evenings and when at sea.

Serwyn_25 karma

Sure! Women typically wear things like sundresses and sandals, capri pants and a nice top, for fancier things like specialty restaurants maybe an evening cocktail dress. You can basically wear whatever you want during the day, like jeans and t shirts when going ashore. The only time the dress code is enforced is when they have parties like captains cocktail or for the fancier restaurants. We are told that we only turn guests away on those occasions if they’re wearing jeans or shorts or open toed shoes (for men, nice sandals are ok for women)

k-selectride16 karma

My takeaway from multiple AMAs on reddit from cruise ship staff is that sleeping with guests is an immediate fireable offense (like OP said), but sleeping with other crew is fine.

Serwyn_31 karma

Yep! I have a boyfriend who I met on my first contract. It’s 100% ok to sleep with other crew. But it’s considered fraternization and I think a lot of legal issues can arise if they were to allow for guests to sleep with crew. Like if alcohol was involved, if it turned out to be not completely consensual, if crew started asking for money from guests for it, etc. lawsuits waiting to happen

dirtymoney20 karma

What do you miss because you are on a cruise ship most of the time? Vs being in a set place on land?

Serwyn_73 karma

WIFI. We only get WhatsApp included free with our crew plan. Everything else we have to pay $5 per hour to use (and some things like YouTube just doesn’t work at all even with the paid plan). Also I just miss things like Mexican food (lemme tell you other countries outside the US do not do Tex-Mex justice at all). I miss my family and friends of course, driving, and being able to go out at night or not having to worry about how long I have to be ashore. I’m always stressed about how long it takes to get to a city from the ship or checking my phone to make sure we haven’t missed the all aboard time. Oh and a bed bigger than a single. I can’t wait for the day I’m not squished together with my boyfriend in a bed meant for one person. Lastly, just privacy and the ability to just look like shit and not care. The walls are thin, you see everyone you work with all the time and there is NO separation of work and private life. So you can never just roll out of bed and get breakfast in pajamas. Always gotta look presentable

No1Asked4MyOpinion18 karma

What happens when a performer gets sick?

Serwyn_37 karma

We have to make understudy tracks out of the other singers or dancers. So we go through the show and split up the part between us as best as possible and learn their part in time for the show.

energirl18 karma

I've always dreamed of having this sort of job. How do you even audition?

Serwyn_61 karma

Each Cruiseline posts auditions on their website, you can also see auditions in general on sites like playbill.com. How it works is you go to an open call for singers. This cruiseline specifically gave a list of songs to choose from to prepare beforehand. You go in, introduce yourself and sing the songs. Then they asked me to sing a song that wasn’t on their list that I had in my book (most singers bring what’s called a “book” filled with sheet music of songs they like to audition with”). They cut everyone except for me and two others (there were about 60 people at the start of the audition with me) to stay for a dance call. We were taught a simple dance combination that we performed for them. They called me for a virtual interview the next day and then I got the job!

Bigus-dickus16 karma

Thank you for the interesting Ama! How many days off do you get on the ship? What do you do then? And how often do you go back home?

Serwyn_15 karma

Typically our contracts are one month in rehearsals on land and 6 months on the ship. My first contract was 9 months total though. We usually go home for about 2-4 months in between depending on what other ship spots are open

FlattopMaker16 karma

what are the duties of a vocal captain compared to the other vocal performers?

Serwyn_41 karma

I am responsible for making sure that the integrity of the show stays the same as it was installed by the install team during initial rehearsals. So each cruise I get videos of each performance, I watch them back and take notes on them to give to the cast before the next show. I also communicate with the band and print and tape music for any extra sets we may have to do. I also am responsible to help the tech team with sound check and will relay any issues from the cast with the mics or the balance in the onstage monitors.

FlattopMaker22 karma

that is such a busy role on top of performing, kudos for your dedication and making a fun experience for the audience!

Serwyn_9 karma

Thank you!

Sotilis15 karma

Hwy there! I used to work on a cruiseship too, I was a waiter. My accomodation was a 3x3m room which I shared with 3 other people. I always thought the accommodation for different roles must be way better.

Can you tell a bit about yours?

Serwyn_28 karma

Yes so entertainment is kind of varied. Our cast has 12 people. Typically the captains and the singers get the best rooms. Since I am both, I was one of the lucky 4 to get what’s called a Jack and Jill room where we have a single cabin but share a bathroom, 4 of the others have guest rooms with two per room. The last 4 have crew rooms and two per room. It’s mostly luck of the draw for the cast. Overall we do have better rooming than the other departments since a lot of us have agencies and managers who fight the company for better room/ board and pay. We also get a privilege package about on the same level as a middle management in the other departments. I share a hallway with the destinations manager, head of concierge, first deck cadet, etc. So we get our rooms cleaned by room stewards once a day if we want as well and we can go to one of the guest restaurants for food on days that aren’t busy.

FlattopMaker13 karma

is there a warm-up or practice area on board? how do you and the musicians practice and tune instruments?

Serwyn_62 karma

Unfortunately no. We can rehearse only during set times when the stage is not being used. There is a tech closet on the side of the theatre that people practice in if need be as well. The theatre is right underneath guest cabins so there are quiet hours of when we can and cannot practice. Something interesting that I didn’t know before though is that all the pianos on the ship get tuned every embarkation day of every cruise by someone ashore that they bring on just for the day. Apparently they go out of tune pretty quickly at sea

Ilikewaterandjuice12 karma

What song is requested most often?

Do you have songs that you will not sing?

Serwyn_36 karma

I personally don’t do many sets where the audience can ask for requests. I am a part of the production cast which means we have pre-made shows, kinda like musicals, that stay the same every time we perform them. I have done a few other sets though and just being around the guests I have learned their music tastes so I can still answer that they definitely love ABBA songs like Dancing Queen or Mamma Mia. They like Carol King, Beatles, Elvis, Temptations, Frank Sinatra, basically the most popular songs from the 50’s-70’s, plus songs from popular old musicals and salsa/ballroom music so they can dance with their husbands/wives on the dance floor,

Ilikewaterandjuice12 karma


Now I can't get " I feel the boat move under my feet" out of my head.

Serwyn_3 karma


22plus10 karma

What other type of entertainment "act" are your favorite and least favorite?

Serwyn_40 karma

We don’t have many here because it is a smaller line. Since we are the official cast, we have four MainStage shows and a fifth welcome aboard show. The rest of the days of the cruise are filled with guest performers. Here are a few examples: other professional solo singers, salsa dancers, comedians, ventriloquists, tap dancers, violin player, pianist, and magicians. We aren’t big enough to have huge shows like aerialists, divers, etc. My favorite have been certain singers and magicians. My least favorite tend to be the comedians, especially since a lot of them seem to use the same joke formulae over and over. One time an observational comic decided it would be funny to make sexual comments about me specifically the night that I had to greet and degreet doors. Was not happy about that.

baltinerdist22 karma

greet and degreet

I would have never in my life identified the word "degreet" as a term to be used to say goodbye to people as they leave.

Serwyn_18 karma

Hahaha it’s probably just cruise ship lingo that they use here.

Dondi_4199 karma

Do you/Did you ever experience stage fright and if so what do you do to get over it?

Serwyn_31 karma

Not anymore, when I first started performing in middle school I got terrible state fright but it’s the sort of thing that you just get desensitized to the more you do it. Now I’m only ever get nervous if there’s a specific person I’m trying to impress in the audience like my family visiting or when I was first dating my boyfriend.

ianzu8 karma

What song are you sick of?

Serwyn_22 karma

I don’t hate any of the songs we do but sometimes these ones get stuck in my head and don’t stop: Jailhouse rock, twist and shout, the beat goes on, splish splash

yaboygetbuckets8 karma

which cruise line? what ships?

Serwyn_20 karma

I’m working for Oceania which is part of the company that owns Norwegian and Regent as well

beatzeus6 karma

Is the food included in the accommodations?

Serwyn_19 karma

Yes, we get staff mess every day and my privilege package includes being able to go to one guest restaurant on days when it’s not busy

Ishniana5 karma

What kind of lodging do you get as an entertainer?

Serwyn_13 karma

My first ship I shared a guest room with another performer. It had a window that was blocked by a lifeboat so most guests wouldn’t want it anyway. This contract I have what we call a “Jack and Jill” where I have a small single room connected to another by a shared bathroom. The room is pretty small though. A small closet that is half shelves so I can’t even hang my dresses all the way down and some drawers under my bed. We keep our suitcases in the dressing room to save space. I have a small desk, a small tv, and a sink that I don’t have to share as well. My boyfriend sleeps with me in my single bed even though he has his own cabin and it can get very squished at night

Serwyn_11 karma

Though it varies from contract to contract and not all the entertainers get the same stuff. 1/3 in my cast have shared guest rooms and 1/3 get shared crew quarters, the last 1/3 have single rooms like mine with a shared bathroom

flibbidygibbit3 karma

Have you worked for someone "before they were famous"?

I ask because I have a relative who worked with a current TV personality before that personality was famous, they worked together on a cruise ship as on-board entertainment.

Serwyn_10 karma

I think I might be a bit young for that right now. So far I know a few people on Broadway or Broadway tours. But I sure hope in the future I can say that I have!

silverwick3 karma

What do you guys do when you're not working, everyday when you're off the clock?

Serwyn_2 karma

I try to go into port every day that I can. When we’re at sea I have a bunch of movies and tv shows downloaded to watch. There’s also I library onboard to get books to read.

FlattopMaker3 karma

are the performances specific to a cruiseline or a specific cruise, or could your lineup be played on any multi-day ocean cruise?

Serwyn_6 karma

Yes, each ship in the fleet has different shows that were created by the cruise line. The Cruise director decides what order each show will be but the shows are the same for years, just with different casts. We have four 45 minute shows and two 10 minute shows we call “bumpers” that we typically use for the welcome aboard show.

EmploymentAbject40193 karma

That’s awesome! What kind of qualifications did you have/need to get the job and was it super competitive?

Serwyn_21 karma

It is pretty competitive, they have auditions regularly. Probably several times a month in cities all over the world. Usually about 50-100 singers show up and twice as many dancers. Out of everyone who auditions, usually they probably only keep 10% of them for the dance call and even less than that get hired. Oceania has 7 ships. Each ship only has two female singers so that’s only 14 slots open every 6 months. All professional jobs for entertainers is competitive unfortunately. But thankfully once you get one job with the company they tend to rehire you without you needing to re-audition again.

Qualifications wise, they don’t really care about schooling as long as you can sing and dance well. It’s a plus if you can read music well and for the Luxury ships where you have to do other duties such as socializing they have an extra interview to see if you have a professional attitude and would be good for interacting with them.

AliJDB3 karma

Have you ever been on a ship hit by norovirus (or similar) that has had a significant impact?

Serwyn_5 karma

Outbreaks don’t happen as much as people think. There were small outbreaks about three times over 6 months this contract and each time were quickly handled. It’s just bound to happen when so many people are living and eating in such close quarters

cubert733 karma

I have been on 20+ cruises, from the Med to Caribbean to Singapore to Antarctica, on everything from Hurtigruten to Carnival to Celebrity to Wind Star. In my experience the quality of vocalists has been extremely inconsistent. There were some on a Celebrity cruise who emptied the pool area when they took the stage. Meanwhile there was a pianist on a Carnival cruise who rivaled Billy Joel.

What do you, as a fellow professional, say or do when other performers are objectively bad?

Serwyn_3 karma

There’s only been one person that I felt like wasn’t amazing, talent-wise. Unfortunately the ratio of guys vs girls who audition is not balanced at all which sometimes leads them to take some people who aren’t completely right for the job in my opinion. They also tend to sometimes cast people who are used to only singing musical theatre style songs and someone can be very talented at doing that but sound like shit when it comes to a contemporary song on the radio. In my experience though the casts that I have had are filled with absolutely amazing singers.

redditknees3 karma

Its no secret that cruise ships cause significant harm to the environment and threaten the health of all species.

How do you feel about the environmental impact of the cruise liner industry on the climate crisis?

Serwyn_21 karma

To be honest I don’t know much about the issue since I’m just a singer. I do know that we have several positions onboard dedicated solely to reducing our environmental impact as much as possible. Our company during our training informed us about policies to minimize the impact such as using recycled water and having strict policies when it comes to waste management.

dolcewheyheyhey2 karma

Do you have to sing every day? What do you do when your voice is tired or have throat issues?

Serwyn_3 karma

Luckily no, we sing probably 6 times out of every 10 days at most so we get a lot of time to recover. Every singer gets vocally tired every once in a while though so when that happens I usually gargle warm salt water, breathe in steam, warm up and warm down for longer and try not to speak much on my off time.

throw123454321purple2 karma

How many requests have you gotten to sing “The Love Boat”?

Serwyn_5 karma

Actually none that I can think of! Though one of my friends was just on the reality dating show Love Boat

Serwyn_3 karma

Actually none that I can think of! Though one of my friends was just on the reality dating show Love Boat

reclusivepervertsigh2 karma

What are some of your favourite songs to sing?

Serwyn_16 karma

I love a good power ballad like “The Winner Takes it All”, “Where the Boys Are”, and “Defying Gravity”. Some of my favorite uptempo’s though are “Sway”, “Valerie”, and “River Deep”