Celestyal Crystal Cruise: Cuban culture saluted in ship shows

ABOARD THE CELESTYAL CRYSTAL – They danced. They sang. They did amazing acrobatic maneuvers. The Celesytal Crystal entertainment team is really good.

Usually, smaller ships have smaller entertainments offerings. That is fine. I’ve enjoyed many small ship cruises where the evening program was a singer and a guitarist or a singer who was a guitarist. Or sometimes a duo would be brought aboard from the place where we were docked.

Performances include several changes of costumes for singers and dancers.

But the Crystal has a talented dance team as well as singers and an excellent band. However, what I like best is that the evening shows have a Cuban theme. After all, that is why we are on this cruise – to learn more about Cuba.

Our first night’s show was Cirque Fantastic with some amazing cirque-type feats. Other shows on our cruise will be Afro-Cuba which explores the folklore of  Afro-Cubans; Revolución, a love story set at the time of the Cuban revolution; Fiesta Latina; Cabaret; and Azucar which deals with the. traditions of Cuba.

Shows take place each night at 9:15 in the Muses Lounge theater on Deck 8. There is only one show and the theater has plenty of comfortable seats for all passengers.

Many Crystal entertainers are Cuban.

I made videos of two of the productions in one show, thinking I would choose one video to share with you. But I think the videos showcase the diverse talents and Cuban themes so well that I’m sharing both so you can see what a great job these entertainers do.

Throughout the day, other activities and entertainment are offered but I haven’t done any of those so far. If we are docked, I’m usually off the ship. If cruising, I’m meeting with people, trying to find WiFi or watching the ocean roll.

Some of those scheduled activities include tea time melodies with tea and music, karaoke, dance lessons, how to make paper flowers, Spanish language lessons, bingo, Name that Tune game, towel folding demonstration, fruit and vegetable carving demonstration, fashion show, Zumba class, Cuban knowledge quiz, the Price is Right game, making tropical postcards and more.

A cirque-type show features acrobatic dancers.

After the evening show, there are still more musical choices, including dancing and karaoke. So far, I haven’t stayed up for any of those. After the evening show, it’s bedtime for me.

One evening when we arrive in Havana, we will be attending the famous Tropicana Cabaret that has an extravagant show with more than 200 dancers and singers and a huge orchestra. Opened in 1939, the Tropicana was a casino owned by gangsters and visited by the rich and famous before the revolution. The place was featured in a scene in the “Godfather II” movie.

The Tropicana show is a pricey $149 but I’ve heard it is quite an experience and well worth the admission. Looking forward to it. Will let you know what it is like and hope to get a video to share.

Photos and video by Jackie Sheckler Finch

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