A Shipmate’s Log: Reminiscing It’s The Ship 2018

The Genting Dream – It’s The Ship 2018

Departure: Singapore, 4 November 1500

Stopover: Phuket, 5 November 1900

Day 1 – Singapore: 4 November 2018, 1300hrs

The massive Genting Dream cruise ship looms over the Marina Bay Cruise Centre as I pulled up. I don’t remember ever feeling this insignificant in my life.

It was just two months ago when I made the decision to come aboard for It’s The Ship 2018. I barely listen to any electronic dance music (EDM), hadn’t been to a club in over a year, and had a paper to sit for just two days after the music festival.

Of course I said yes.

There is a famous quote that goes “A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for“. If you look past the fact that it is pretty overused on inspirational Tumblr posts, you will see that it has a very important message; and it is definitely not about ships – it is encouraging people to venture into unknown territories.

And right now, I think I’m ready to leave the harbor. Just after all this pesky ‘check-in’ business is settled.  

Day 1 – Singapore: 4 November 2018, 1935hrs

ITS 2018: Main Pool Deck
It’s a 24/7 pool party at It’s the Ship. Wish you were here?

The ship’s mid-section is an endless stretch of ‘cabins’, which are akin to little hotel rooms with a majestic view of the ocean. Above the cabins is a 24-hour buffet where we just had dinner. The food was just alright, but when it comes to a voyage like this, you take what you get.

The Crown Stage at the main pool deck.

The main attractions on the ship are its three stages where the several DJs will play their sets simultaneously for three days. There is the Anchor Stage, the indoor Zouk Club, and the Crown Stage; the Crown is no doubt the main venue, with a massive outdoor arena that consists of a swimming pool, four jacuzzis that function as “tables” and a dance-floor. The DJ stage overlooks the entire complex from an elevated platform as a king would overlook his empire.

We are about to explore the rest of the ship’s vast interior before the party officially kicks off.

If the Titanic is any indication of what happens on giant luxury ships, it’s about to go down.

Day 2 – Phuket: 5 November 2340hrs

ITS 2018: Foam Party
AltrXego’s foam party at the Anchor Stage was too fun to miss.

I should have made an entry earlier, but my stuff got all wet and soapy during the afternoon foam party.

ITS 2018: Mermaids
Their squad is better than yours.

Also, I got distracted; I’ve never seen this many attractive people in one place in my life.

ITS 2018: SG Squad

Representing Singapore is an assortment of Instagram models and influencers. Joining them on the dance-floor are Western backpackers, squads from all over the world, and a 90-person crew from Guam, an offshore Philippines island.

The passengers on board are brought together by a love of music, freedom, and expensive cruise ships.

ITS 2018: Onesies
Onesies parties are treated very seriously.

On an unrelated note, I have yet to come across drinking water. I guess I’ll have to get my sustenance from whiskey from the bars and free-flow juice from the dining halls, and pray I survive to the end.

Day 3 – Phuket to Singapore: 6 November, 1527hrs

ITS 2018: Darude

Earlier today, we got to speak with legendary Finnish DJ Darude. He told us that there isn’t a specific desired reaction a DJ expects from his audience. Since every person is different, they experience music in distinct ways. With years of experience under his belt, he is able to adapt to the energy, atmosphere and setting, and managed to keep the crowd going up till the end of his set at the Crown stage.

I think I’m beginning to understand EDM.

Getting the chance to experience each DJ’s unique style of music and audience engagement over the past two days has given me a newfound appreciation of the art.

ITS 2018: Darude's heart

Yes I did just call it art.

Day 3 – Phuket to Singapore: 6 November, 1840hrs

ITS 2018: Big Shaq
Big Shaq’s special appearance at the Anchor stage.

One of the main attractions that ship passengers were awaiting eagerly for was Big Shaq, who despite being labelled as ship captain, had only made his presence known over the ship’s speaker system till now.

The man himself took to the Anchor stage a while ago, and performed his hit singles Man’s Not Hot and Man Don’t Dance. Accompanying him was DJ Klippa, his stage counterpart.

ITS 2018: Big Shaq & Crowd

Unfortunately for his die-hard fans, his set was short-lived, and consisted mostly of his DJ playing classic hip-hop remixes.

On top of that, the live audience found it difficult to vibe to his parody songs, which he performed with little to no props and setup.

This man, sadly, didn’t dance.

Day 4 – Phuket to Singapore: 7 November, 0154hrs

ITS 2018: Vini Vici
Matan Kadosh of Vini Vici

An EDM highlight that travellers came to see was Israeli duo Vini Vici. Of the two, only Matan Kadosh was present, and his partner Aviram Saharai did not make an appearance. However, Kadosh still delivered their distinctive psychedelic style of beats and put the crowd into a hypnotic state.

Speaking to him during an interview, Kadosh described the fans at music festivals as a tribe of outsiders, and he is not far off.

ITS 2018: Vini Vici set

Like any form of music, EDM is centered around getting the listener to feel something deeper than the bass. A skilled DJ is able to use his tracks to elicit both emotional and physical responses from his audience, giving them a transcendent experience. The crowd becomes a part of the music itself, and they move in unison, bringing members closer together in the tribe.

Day 4 – Singapore: 7 November, 1430hrs

ITS 2018: Showtek
A fellow shipmate high-fiving one of the members of Showtek during their glow bowling game.

It’s The Ship and The Genting Dream have successfully completed yet another journey, unifying sailors from all over the world. All passengers appear to be unharmed, save for a few treacherous tan-lines.

I’m on my way back to base to take a nap until the next big festival rolls around.

You know how they say “it’s good to be back“?

Well it isn’t.

Photos by Debbie Y. of Moonrise Studio on behalf of the DANAMIC team.

Check out our video highlight of It’s The Ship 2018 here:

Video by Arthur Keng of the DANAMIC team.

Jeevan Vishnu

I'm 6'5, 220 - and there's two of me.

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