EP111 – Daniel Bartrope and Robyn Cahill – What does it take to be a cruise ship comedian?
Total run time: 1 hour 27 mins 16 secs.
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About this episode…
Don Casino Entertainment (@ doncasinoagency) are one of the big cruise ship entertainment companies based in the US. I got two of the senior scouts on during Edinburgh Fringe to talk about what they’re looking for, what it takes to work cruise ships, what you can and can’t say and do as well as how comedians deal with dying on stage and having to live with an audience who didn’t like what they did and more!
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Who are you? [0 mins]
How do you scout for talent? [1 min]
How important are awards to you? [5 mins]
What are the roles involved in cruise ship talent? [6 mins]
What does it take? [10 mins]
Do specific ships look for specific acts? [11 mins]
Is the cruise ship market expanding?
How do you deal with comedians who bomb on ships? [13 mins]
How do you support the mental health of those comedians?
Is it true that there’s been a comedian who bombed so hard they were airlifted off?
Why cruise ships?
Are they booked for every night the same show or are they booked for 5 nights out of 7 etc. [15 mins]
How many shows do they do? Are they at random times of the day or night time etc
How much material does a comedian need to do a cruise, just an hour every time or do they have a high burn rate?
What do you scout for first… an act or a ship because there’s a real chicken or egg situation. [13 mins]
How do comedians try out for spots on ships? [17 mins]
How much notice do you give an act for a cruise?
Is there a schedule like gigging on land or is it sporadic?
How has the industry changed in the last 30 years?
Has political correctness impacted comedians on ships?
Do cruise acts tend to do just cruises or clubs as well?
Does the comedian get any down time or is it like Edinburgh where you are always on? [22 mins]
Do the ships have a comedy club or a general theatre?
How do line ups work? Are comedians booked for a headline / opening / middle slot or their whole show?
Do you read trip adviser reviews / social media reviews of acts and does this impact if you’ll rebook an act?
Is there a low number that you don’t run the show for? Given it’s included in the price of the cruise for the punted and they can come / leave as they want.