SEATTLE, Aug. 6— With the recent launch of the 2,106-guest ms Nieuw Amsterdam, Holland America Line is showcasing its new approach to shipboard entertainment, opting to bring more intimacy to evening shows.

Exemplifying this new direction is the singing group Cantare, a quartet of male performers with a pop music repertoire covering several eras.

“With this new approach we’ve focused on getting top-notch performers, and you’ll see more faces from Broadway, ‘American Idol’ and other well-known performance outlets gracing our stage,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “We’re looking to share meaningful entertainment experiences with our guests through the quality of the music and performances, as well as deliver increasingly innovative and enriching options.”

Several production shows will debut aboard Nieuw Amsterdam, including “N.Y.C.,” a musical tour of the Big Apple; “Ladies Night,” a fun and fabulous all-female revue; “Live from the Avalon Ballroom,” an extravaganza of ballroom dance and music; “Garage Band,” a ’60s and ’70s musical set in an automobile service center, and “It Takes Two,” a revue of famous duets and duos.

Following the shows’ run aboard Nieuw Amsterdam they will expand across the fleet by the end of 2010.

Throughout the cruising year, Holland America Line’s more than 200 entertainers perform more than 90 shows on the 15 ships in the fleet. In addition to the resident performers, guests also can enjoy a variety of entertainment including comedians, musicians and magicians.

On several ships, performances take place in the new Showroom at Sea, a modern-day take on the classic nightclub that features state-of-the-art technology and a different show and themed atmosphere nightly. The Showroom at Sea is aboard Nieuw Amsterdam, as well as ms Veendam, ms Rotterdam, ms Statendam and ms Ryndam as part of the $525 million Signature of Excellence enhancement program.

The Showroom at Sea features a completely redesigned main stage that introduces a new seating layout and an enlarged dance floor. A new sound system, enhanced lighting and high-tech video projections transport guests into diverse environments as scenery and decor leap off the stage and into the audience.

Holland America Line’s creative team has earned more Tony, Emmy, Grammy and Oscar nominations than any other in the cruise industry. Hugh Durrant — a costume, set and theatrical designer — has won Emmy awards for his work with Cher and others, and fashion icon Bob Mackie, who created many of Holland America Line’s costumes, has a long history of award-winning designs for celebrities.

Built at Fincantieri’s Marghera yard near Venice, Italy, Nieuw Amsterdam was named by Her Royal Highness Princess Maxima of the Netherlands July 4, 2010. After a series of 12-day Mediterranean sailings, the ship embarks on a fall trans-Atlantic crossing to the Caribbean to sail seven-day eastern and western itineraries from November 2010 through March 2011.

For more information and cruise fares, contact a professional travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (1-877-724-5425) or visit www.hollandamerica.com.

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