Just a little info on NCL. First, they make everyone get weighed when you first arrive for rehearsals. That is your “rehearsal weight”. once you are onboard they weigh you every 2 weeks, and you are not to gain or lose 5 pounds. If you do, your manager onboard will give you a talk and let you know that they’re watching that you get back to rehearsal weight. From my multiple contracts, I’ve seen this instill eating disorders amongst countless cast members. I am a nutrition coach, and know how arbitrary a 5 pound difference is, and I’ve sent letters explaining this from a scientific standpoint to NCL. Ive also mentioned the eating disorders that this has caused. I’ve never gotten a reply.
Another thing to know is that recently, NCL has decided to take away all privileges from cast members. “privileges” are the ability to enjoy guest area whenever you’d like. This includes eating around the ship, using guest gym, lounging around, etc. Also no housekeeping. This is the only cruise line that is not giving their performers this kind of lifestyle.
Some specific ships have handled this new policy better than others. Luckily, the ship im currently on, has found ways around it. Others haven’t been so lucky. All in all, the contracts you sign don’t fully protect you onboard. Things can change at the drop of a hat. It’s important to performers auditioning for NCL to be aware of this!
I personally will never be working for NCL ever again. They cut our contract length in half and sent us home early with only days notice laying us off the DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS. We tried to reach out to higher ups in HR on shoreside for help/advocacy and were completely ignored and brushed aside. We were denied even the opportunity to have meeting to discuss our grievances and the real human impact of not just losing our jobs, but our homes. We were treated like garbage by the Staff Captain onboard and the rules were ever changing. The contract you sign means ABSOLUTELY NOTHING as there is a clause in it that basically says the terms of the agreement can be changed at any time...... and unfortunately their contracts are not typically negotiable. Our stewards were taken away, our guest access was greatly limited and overall my first and last experience with this company was traumatizing. There is so much more I could say, but I recommend you reach out to many people to talk through their experience before committing to a contract with this company and make sure you equip yourself with the resources you need to protect yourself. This is not a normal theatrical contract. These big companies unfortunately DO NOT care about you and WILL throw you out like garbage if it means saving them a dollar. I really hate to say it, but unfortunately their business is about making money first. Not art. and it sucks but we have to be aware and protect ourselves.