Now that summer is officially here, it’s time to start thinking (if we haven’t already) about Christmas. As my former boss used to say “It’s the day-after-tomorrow”. Figuratively speaking, of course. It will be here before you know it.
Most of us, instinctively start into our Christmas musical search routine without really reflecting on what we want to accomplish with a Christmas production – other than to tell the story in some way that trumps last year’s telling. As believers, Christmas is about celebrating the birth of Christ. Our desire to celebrate, and the joy we feel in doing so, comes from within because we have a personal connection with baby who was born in that manger. He has transformed our lives, so his coming was the very thing that was responsible for connecting us to God himself. That is worthy of celebration. But what about those who don’t know Christ? What dothey celebrate at Christmas? Are they celebrating this “feel good” time of year? Peace on earth? Time off from work? Christmas parties and presents? Family gatherings? Why does this question even matter?
Now that you’ve chosen your musical, here are the next steps:
1.Set your rehearsal schedule all the way up to the performance.Be sure to start early enough to allow plenty of time to not only learn the dialog and music, but to rehearse the scenes, and to block and stage the musical in your actual performance space. You’ll also need time to build sets, rent (or make) costumes, gather props, etc. You’ll obviously have to allow down time for holidays like Thanksgiving.
So you’re considering a dinner-theater musical this Christmas – or at least something dramatic with music instead of a traditional cantata – but don’t know where to start? On the front end, doing this kind of musical can seem pretty intimidating, but like anything big undertaking, it’s best if broken up in smaller, manageable bites in order to reach the desired goal.
First, you have to know what you’ve got to work with in the way of talent. Make a list of your soloists (male and female) and a good estimate of how many ensemble cast members (non-soloing participants) you can expect to have involved in the production. Knowing what level and amount of talent you have to work with is the first step in choosing a show for your group.