If you have already finished your Christmas Programs for the year you can file this away for next year.
If you’re in the midst of programs right now few things can help you more than reading the survival guide below.
12: Start organized with a plan
You know the saying, fail to plan and you can plan on failing. Guess what, it’s true. Talent will only carry you so far.
The really great musician, technicians and artists know how to make things happen. Whether it is a written plan (which I recommend) or just a mental plan you’ve thought through in advance, the process of planning can make all the difference is both the success of the event and your own sanity.
11: Check all of your gear to make sure it is working
This goes with planning. There is nothing more frustrating that pulling a bad mic cable or broken mic that hasn’t been used for 6 months, except the time the youth group band borrowed it and swung it around.
Smacking it into the wall a few times, and then just sneaking it back in the shelf not telling you. Thus, sending you in panic or rush mode to figure out what else to use.
10: Work ahead, work the plan
Think ahead and do the tasks ahead of time that you can. For instance, check all the gear two weeks in advance which will leave you ample time to get items repaired or replaced.
9: Discover what is really important and focus on that
Don’t get caught up in the cool effect you want for that one song and miss the more important stuff, like doing a line check before the band shows up!
For me this year, I had to give up on this really cool edge blended 9’x30’ video screen back drop I worked on for days.
If I would have worked on trying to get that working and ignored the important things, like setting up the main P.A. and getting the lighting cues recorded, the event would have failed.
In the end, nobody but me and my tireless volunteer Wayne knew what they were missing on the video.
8: Invest in those around you
Tech guys and musicians can get so focused on the tasks at hand that we tend to forget about those around us. Use this time to let some of the less experienced guys shadow you.
Teach them by showing them what you are doing and telling them why. It never hurts to bring chocolate…