- Marco Kasel
Music has been a major part of entertainment at sea since the height of the “golden age” of ocean liners in the 1930s. Initially, cruise liners at the start of the 20th century were built to transport passengers from one port to another, mostly across the transatlantic from Europe to New York City, and more often than not, transported immigrants who weren’t expected for a return trip. On the other hand, 21st-century cruise ships are built for vacationing purposes, which means passengers expect to be entertained throughout their voyage.
Since cruise line companies of yesteryear were preoccupied with speed and safety, guests were expected to entertain themselves with reading, swimming, shuffle board games, or playing music on their own. Eventually, musical ensembles were hired to entertain higher-tier passengers on luxury liners. Bunny Rowe and his Orchestra performed for first and second class passengers only on the RMS Queen Mary, which first sailed in ...