Before mom and I said goodbye to our last Thanksgiving dinner guests, my mind shifted its focus to our church’s Christmas play.
Ah, Christmas plays… As a little girl, I wanted to be THE girl with bouncy spaniel curls as she sang, “That’s Gotta be the Biggest Chirstmas Tree in the Whole Wide World*.” I also wanted to have the voice of the young lad who sang “O Holy Night**.”
It is stupid and prideful, but into my early teens, I secretly cried after our church plays because they were never as grand or as polished as Bellvue’s. The orchestra, that tall, tall tree, those lights which did so much more than spotlight the current speaker; they amplified emotions. The solos sung from the top of the tree drew cups and cups of salty tears. They must’ve practiced for months. Our plays were doomed to only be applauded.
Now, I’ve spiritually matured and my new church is helping me take things in stride. I volunteered to scout, cast, direct, write, and stage manage at my new, old church.
How to Scout, Cast, Direct, Write, and Stage Manage a Christmas Play at a Church You Have not Attended in Four Years
- Find the ghosts of plays from Christmas past
- Choose the song and memory verse and have the children rehearse it each Sunday
- Also, have children make props for the play during craft time
- Stick to your guns (i.e. if you teach a different group of children each Sunday due to spotty attendance, do not be persuaded to let said children have leading roles in the play: a general song and roles as extras is a smarter route, no?)
- Double-check availability of the adults with speaking parts (two people left a few hours before the play)
- Do not be afraid to ask performers to bring their own costumes and props
- Be even less afraid to stop the play and have the children sing the song you had them practice ^.^
It was a great play, and thank God, each person had the right role. So, whether you volunteer or are volunteered to direct this year’s Christmas play, calm down and be merry!
* **A video of these two performances is available online, but as their actual names are used, I decided not to link them. If you would like to see them, please contact me.