Sunday, December 12, 2010

Justino, Daniela and Elements

We were first asked in early 2009 to come over to Norwegian Cruise Lines to perform our headline show “EXTREME VEGAS”,  before ever stepping foot on an NCL ship, we were called back asking if we would also be interested in being featured in a new stage spectacular produced by NCL Productions.  To be totally honest, this scared both myself and my Daniela, we have worked years establishing a quality name behind our shows, and the thought of coming over to a new company to be part of a production we have never heard of,   was well.. scary.   
 We have seen many “Cruise Ship Productions” on many lines, some good... some,  well.. never mind.   What we didn’t know, was NCL was not planning some ordinary “Cruise Ship Production”.
All our fears were immediately laid to rest when we sat down with NCL Vice President Mr. Richard Ambrose and the amazingly talented New York director and choreographer Patricia Wilcox.
After a few hrs they quickly gave us the story about ELEMENTS a 45 min show with a cast of 16 performers that would feature massive Las Vegas style Illusions, Aerial Ballet, and Unique Dance Productions that tell the story of the 5 Elemental worlds of Earth, Water, Air, Fire & Snow.  Each featuring Daniela & I performing 7 large magic illusions, but these were to be no ordinary illusions, they went to legendary illusion builders Greg Kennedy &  Bill Smith who has designed illusions for David Copperfield, Harry Blackstone & Lance Burton just to name a few.  
We were to be costumed by award winning costume designer Eduardo Sicango,  who had designed for Radio City, Broadway & Seigfreid and Roy, the show would have numerous costume changes featuring over 100 costumes.
We Were Sold!  Daniela & I boarded the Norwegian Spirit in Aug 2010 to see Elements which was the first to open in Oct 2009, and would be the first of 3 ships including the Norwegian Jade and finally what was to be our ship the Norwegian Star. We walked into the Stardust theater to be instantly wowed, The staging had been taken to an entirely new level with huge modern sets designed by James Kronzer, wrapping around into the balcony’s and down into the audience.  We sat in the crowd as the show started getting the unusual experience of being able to watch a show that we would soon be featured in... but tonight it was our turn to watch magician Jorgos & the cast of the Spirit.
Within the first few seconds we quickly realized THIS IS NOT a “Cruise Ship Show”!
The entertainers are not constricted to perform on the stage but just like the amazing soundtrack of the show, you are completely surrounded, the actors perform in the isles, behind you and even jump out of the ceiling on bungees right over your head!  The lighting is simply incredible created by “Nine Inch Nails” & “Korn” designer Jason Bullock, the show also includes beautiful aerial artists “Roberto & Dorota” which we were happy to learn would also be with us on the Star for our 6 month contract.    The choreography is unusual and spectacular and compliments each Element of the show, the music is simply breathtaking and the finale commands the audience to jump out of there seats for a standing ovation which it deservingly gets nightly!  We walked out of the theater very proud to soon be a part of the Elements cast on the Star. After 2 months of install & endless rehearsals the Norwegian Star debuted Elements on Nov 18th to rave reviews and Standing Ovations.  Elements I believe is just the start to show that NCL is the leader in Entertainment!
--Justino Zoppe

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