Jheretired
Contributor Level: Cruise Director

Review by Gregory123

Extremely disappointed in the entertainment and dinning.

In response to review, Jheretired says ...

Gregory123...while I understand that any two individuals can experience the same things and have differing opinions, I cannot let this diatribe go unanswered, given that some people actually read these and make decisions based on reviews such as yours. This is not meant to be argumentative...only meant to give another perspective to your rant.

My wife and I are in our 60s and just completed an 11 day cruise on the Sunshine with the same staff, same dining, same entertainment and, of course, on the same ship. Yes, the ship is a bit old and there is only so much you can do to renovate her, but the upgrades were fantastic.

As for the entertainment, I am not a big fan of production shows on cruises, but I did attended several on the Sunshine and was pleasantly surprised at the talent and the showmanship. Some were actually quite good. I did not find the "male dances" to be exhibiting "homosexual overtones". The Swamp Thing band was the best I have heard in a long time. The "idiot" DJ was, in our opinion, one of the best...he handled all kinds of music...not just the hip-hop crap we are usually treated to on cruises.

The Serenity area is larger on the Sunshine than ANY OTHER SHIP I have ever been on.

As for the dining...pick a time to dine (early or late seating) if you don't want to wait for a table. The anytime dining implies you can go to dinner anytime you want...it does not imply you will have a reserved table waiting for you....they have to fit you in and they are seating and feeding thousands of people (please, get over yourself).

Overall, I found the Sunshine, her staff, her crew, and the entertainment to be a great ship. We would sail with them again, anytime.

Tags: Carnival Cruise Lines Caribbean - Eastern Carnival Sunshine

9 Answers

Gregory123
Contributor Level: Purser
Well Sir (Jheretired), thank you for you response. I sincerely doubt you are a dancer or a one that can fairly judge entertainment. The swamp thing female vocalist was 2 octaves low on every song. The lead guitarist (wish I could remember his name) was a 2nd rate armature that would be found at almost any dive bar. The pianist who was charming and pretty needs voice lessons. Pounding on a piano doesn't help when everything centers around a C note. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip, but my review is still true to my experience. You may just be less experienced to decipher the difference between equity performances and amateur performances, however running around in a jock strap grabbing your crotch or seeing a sweaty chest at "all" the venues IS NOT quality theater. These performers sign up for cruise entertainment. They submit an audio and the carnival entertainment staff hires them sight unseen. A decent solo entertainer would get paid $1500 for the week, and a band would fetch $3500.00. Non of them are worthy. Carnival does do many things right, but quality entertainment for the adults is not one of them. I would NOT hire any of them at my former restaurant because they could not draw a crowd much less a full dance floor. It's that simple. Carnival is best left to the budget mined family with children. So we can agree to disagree but my intentions were not to rip apart carnival, just to give others insight, even if you life in a trailer home in Redneckville.
We had a blast simply because cruising is fun and relaxing but next time we will try another cruise line.
Jheretired
Contributor Level: Cruise Director

Thank you for understanding that everyone is entitled to an opinion...I certainly disagree with most of what you posted. As for me...you are correct that I am not a dancer, but I am a singer and a lover of music and can tell when someone is singing off key. I have also been a critic of some of the entertainment on previous cruises, but found the entertainment on this cruise to be much more enjoyable. (BTW...how can someone be 2 octaves low on a song...did she sing bass? If she did sing 2 octaves low, she would still be in key.) Anyway, sorry you didn't like the entertainment...I found it to be...uh, what's the word...oh, yeah...ENTERTAINING! (not perfect, but entertaining). And just because someone disagrees with you, a former lounge owner, does not make them rednecks....any more than owning a lounge makes one an expert in "quality theatre".

Gregory123
Contributor Level: Purser
Cruise ships are filled with a variety of EVERYTHING. Amazed at the percentage of Hispanics. Latino's people know music!! Likewise good music and good food was found in the Havana section (stern / Lido deck) of the boat. Good entertainment and dancing was also found there too. I would give that entire section of the boat a 10. Ji Ji Asian Kitchen, Cucina Del Capitano, the finger food at the side end of the bar, the bar staff, or simple breakfast at and lunch at either of the two restaurants. Fabulous!! The evening dance floor was the ONLY dance floor packed every night. Why? Because the music was on key with the audience. No, I'm not Latino....I'm a gringo, but I can salsa and meringue dance. I'm sure you would have found this venue no so appealing simple because our taste is uniquely different. Another issue with cruises is the sheer amount of obesity. Almost too hard to believe. Also the amount of people that can't clean or dress up for dinner. So It's safe to say that my review is reserved more for people with a slightly higher standard of culture experience or standard of living. I don't mean to put you down either. Perhaps if you're a retired couple that loves slow romantic dance, loves quality theater and food........this is not the boat to sail on.
Gregory123
Contributor Level: Purser
And yes......the lead female singer for Swamp Thang was very close to bass. They couldn't hold the dance floor beyond a song or two. Sad. As for the pianist....There were many people in the room enjoying the music, bumping their feet or their head but for us, we couldn't wait to get out of there (and far away). We dance, and dancers know good music.
Jheretired
Contributor Level: Cruise Director
Gregory123...thank you! At last you have stated what you LIKED about this cruise and the ship. I am not a judge on American Idol...nor at Carnegie Hall...but I do know what I like. There were parts of the shows I could have done without...and yes, the pianist's voice was a bit rough, but her energy was...again...entertaining.

What I look for in a cruise is the combination of itinerary and timing. If the itinerary is good, the food is decent, the bed is comfortable, I can forgive a less-than-spectacular show. All-in-all, I found the entertainment on the Sunshine to be superior to many of the shows I have seen on other cruises (some were bad enough for ME to complain about).

I am glad you posted the very positive comments about the Havana Bar...and yes, I was there for part of it and enjoyed it. I also enjoyed the Swamp thing band on a couple of nights. Having 11 days to spend, I tried to experience as much of the ship as I could. Retired or not, I still enjoy a good party.
Gregory123
Contributor Level: Purser
Here's a good article about Cruise Entertainment that explains a lot:
http://www.worldcruiseindustryreview.com/features/featureare-you-not-entertained/
Debramc
Contributor Level: Purser
I have to totally agree with Gregory123. The adult entertainment was average at best on a good day. Epic Rock was intended to be a great show but the male dancers completely ruined it with their added "gay" gestures. I also agree with Swamp Thing group, the female vocalist is not worth listening to. Where was the dance floor in the Piano bar???? Food was average and waits were long, but the upscale dinning was delightful and that's where we ended up most evenings. Serenity is nice, but there isn't much serenity since it's adjacent to the loud Lido deck. I guess if you want to rave about this ship, your entitled but a true review would be based on what you liked and didn't like. Carnival is without a question, the mass cruise ship for budget families, and this is what needs to be conveyed. It is NOT for singles, elderly, or people seeking upscale amenities and entertainment. Thus, we will be on Celebrity our next cruise. As for Jheretired, I find you annoying.
Jheretired
Contributor Level: Cruise Director
DebraMC...you are entitled to your opinion...and I am sorry if you find it annoying when people disagree with you. It is hard to please 3000 people on every cruise. I might even agree that the adult entertainment was "average." That is all I expect given the cost. If I wanted a concert or Broadway show, I would go elsewhere...but given that I cruise to enjoy the ports, party a bit, gamble a bit, and occasionally go to a show, it is worth the money and 45 minutes of my time.

Carnival cruises are for fun loving people...not whiners. If you need the upscale amenities and classical music...then Carnival may not be for you.
Jakestur
Contributor Level: Deck Hand

I'm going on the Sunshine October 17th and I'll be applauding the gay male dancers especially loudly to make up for all the negative views toward them some of you have concerning their "gay gestures" and "homosexual overtones".  What rock are you living under to expect masculine straight male dancers to make up the whole production? 

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