Upon arriving on the Ultimate Disco cruise one instantly is assured that StarVista Live knows how to throw a fabulous dance party on the high seas. Excitement is instantly in the air as famed disco greats mingle with the cruise guests. A five-night fantasy trip back to the glorious days and nights of dancing the time away is on the minds of all.
On the second day in on the Ultimate Disco Cruise I had the pleasure to join StarVista Live executives — Executive Producer and Senior Vice President Alan Rubens, and the company’s Senior Vice President Mike Jason — for an intimate group coffee chat. Café Al Baccio, on the lovely Celebrity Infinity, provided the perfect place to get the scoop about the Ultimate Disco Cruise and the other fabulous StarVista Live luxury music cruises.
StarVista Live Music Cruises are About Fueling Memories
Everyone sailing the Ultimate Disco Cruise are living out dream club scene memories while also celebrating with new excitement that will never be forgotten. No one is more passionate about the music cruises than StarVista Live’s Ruben and Jason. The men are responsible for the fabulous programming and overall experience. With over 35 years of experience in the music business, Rubens’ passion for bringing melodic sound together with cruises shines though.
Hailing from Philadelphia, Rubens has proved his passion relating to the musical experience. The music master is a founding member of the Philadelphia Music Alliance and ran the Philadelphia Music Conference during the 1990s.
In 2005 Rubens started as Executive Producer at Time Life in charge of creating new collections of music and video — along with being the Time Life infomercial producer and having his own record label. After a few years, he then organized Time Life’s foray into the world of music memory themed cruises beginning with The Malt Shop Memories Cruise in 2010. 2020 marks the 10th anniversary for Malt Shop Cruise.
With the success of the themed cruises, Time-Life series gave birth to the production company StarVista Live. The company’s senior VP Jason is a record executive with a history at BMG, Sony and RCA. The two men noticed that people still loved music but the box sets were no longer desired as the digital experience took over.
The cruises enabled the company to change with what people were seeking in a unique live music experience. Additional fun cruises have been added as the musical travel adventures gain more fans. The luxury music cruise experiences include the Soul Train Cruise, Country Music Cruise, Flower Power Cruise, ’70s Rock & Romance Cruise, Southern Rock Cruise, and the fabulous Ultimate Disco Cruise.
StarVista Live Aims to Grow Music Cruise Adventures
As coffee provided a needed wakeup from the previous night of disco dancing joy, Rubens and Jason gave news updates for StarVista Live’s cruising musical travel fantasy adventures. What makes the experience extremely special is the roster of celebrities serving round-the-clock entertainment along with special talks, and meet and greets. Fans have the chance to mingle with their favorite star performers.
The StarVista Live cruises are about making new memories joining others who are on the musical adventure with the same mindset. Each cruise experience takes guests back to a joyous era fueled by music from those years. Every cruise is a total happening and the artists are part of the experience.
How the Ultimate Disco Cruise is different from the other themed cruises was explained by the executives. Where the other StarVista Live musical cruises are tight experiences from a single time-period, the Ultimate Disco Cruise has a much more diverse audience. There are people of all ages from around the world who have an appreciation for the disco sound.
Rubens and Jason are always looking to grow and change as they view what cruise fans want. Next year in 2021 the Ultimate Disco Cruise will have Expose joining the fun. StarVista Live is excited about expanding the base for great club and dance music.
When questioned about moving the sold-out music cruises to a larger ship the answer spoke of the men’s appreciation for guests. With the smaller intimate ship, they can guarantee that each of the approximately 2000 cruisers can see all the main acts — this aims to make the customer experience as great as it can be.
Instead of having a larger ship, the company would rather have two smaller ship experiences for the same themed cruise. The Flower Power Cruise has proved to be so popular that the company has added a second cruise to have two — one in the fall and another next spring — as Rubens’ noted, “The cruise showcases the happy music side of that time.”
Ultimate Music Cruise Experience Most Important
A pleasing guest experience is most important to StarVista Live. This really-has proven an invaluable model as many seek to repeat the experience by booking the same cruise in following years. StarVista Live gives those on current cruise the first chance to purchase for the next year. One can even reserve the same cabin as many guests come in large groups, bringing entire neighborhoods. They enjoy the idea of expanding the party experience by rooming near to each other.
The cruises are certainly a labor of love for the men as a tremendous amount of work goes into each themed adventure. Details include having workers going on a ship six months ahead to get to know cruise workers. They are then on board a week ahead of each music cruise so the setting up for themed cruise can begin and be ready to go for the ultimate music experience.
Although they are looking to do additional themes, each new venture takes much careful planning so Rubens and Jason are cautious when starting each new baby. The StarVista Live executives have taken their infomercial idea and gone beyond to create a multi-day adventure so that cruise goers feel like they are living in a live infomercial encounter.
Rubens and Jason discuss everything and if they cannot agree that they believe in something they just will not do it. The biggest challenge is describing what the cruise is like to one who has not been on –
It is a floating music festival allowing all to be totally immersed in the live music experience fun. One can feel the energy from enjoyment of all on cruise.
2020 Ultimate Disco Cruise Had an Immersion of Talent
The 2020 Ultimate Disco Cruise included KC and The Sunshine Band, The Jacksons, Commodores, Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes, Sister Sledge, First Ladies of Disco (featuring Martha Wash, Linda Clifford and Norma Jean Wright), George McCrae, Anita Ward, Maxine Nightingale, France Joli, The Traamps featuring Earl Young, Felipe Rose, and even more disco giants.
Serving as cruise host was Deney Terrio of “Dance Fever” fame known for teaching John Travolta how to move on the dance floor for “Saturday Night Fever.” Joining Terrio for hosting fun was Bob Pantano as the music host. Pantano is recognized for his “Saturday Night Dance Party” radio show — now enjoying 42 years on the air. Looking to next year the 2021 Ultimate Disco Cruise is sure to be an experience to not miss.
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