Christmas from the Director’s chair

It’s 6:00pm Christmas eve eve and the entire day has just flown by.  As I sat down in my directors chair located in front of our video switcher in side of the EBC Blaine control room, lovingly called Edwards, I began to review everything in my head.  All fourteen video clips have been tested and are working, cameras have been colored, the band has been sound checked, rehearsed, and are now ready to go. All of my decks were recording and our live feed from out main campus was coming over without a glitch.  The volunteers were accounted for and ready to go, I was fully confidence in our crew. Thinking through my checklist and the activities of the day I felt a peace as we approached the start of our first Christmas service ever at Blaine.

We worked hard all week preparing for our guest and we were ready to deliver the best Christmas service we could; we were ready, we were prepared.  Every detail was thought through, talked about and documented.  You would think the first Christmas service in a new building would be terrifying but I was confident in our team and our plan.  I knew that God was going to show up and do amazing things at all of our campuses.

As the countdown neared zero for the first time and a room full of attendees not knowing what is coming next, I looked back at TJ, our Blaine producer, and said with a big smile on my face, “ready or not here we go!”  Christmas services were officially off and running.

The videos rolled, the lights turned on and the band began to play.  TJ is sitting in the back of the room giving people cues helping us to all know what is coming up next and when to make the next transitions. I begin to call cameras shots and all the camera operators started to search for shots of the band members giving their all in performance and in worship.  The shader adjusted the irises of the cameras so they all looked great on the side-screens.  Words began to appear for an entire congregation to follow and sing along to. Everyone on our team is focused on their task and giving their very best.  We go through the service line-by-line, cue after cue.

I don’t get to be out with the congregation so I have to find another way to engage into worship.  Directing cameras and working with people behind the scenes has become the way I worship.  I guess I believe that when I put a camera shot up on the screens it helps others to engage.  I have had many spiritual moments directing and I hope people can see my heart on the screens during worship.

We were nearing the end of the offertory, the first half of the service was almost over and everything was going extremely smooth.  The band finished the song; Tj cued me to roll into our live feed. The video hit the side-screens, audio began to play, the center screen dropped from the ceiling and then we saw Bob.  The control room went silent as we watched the message for the first time.

This is the fifth Christmas that I have been apart of here at Eagle Brook.  Every Christmas is a new challenge, but there is one common theme that comes up every year, it is a team effort!  That staff and volunteer hours that are put into Christmas is astronomical but we couldn’t do it without everyone doing their part.

Bob began to conclude his message by leading everyone into the salvation message, the band got ready to go back on stage to lead people into silent night, the camera operators got back into position and we waited for Bob to transition us into Silent Night.  The center screen went up, light cues were hit, the band began to play and we closed out our first Christmas service.

After our first ever Blaine Christmas services came to a close, I felt so privileged to get to work with all the staff and volunteer that gave up their time.  We had a near flawless couple of days and we all put forth our best effort in making this the best Christmas yet; giving people an experience they will never forget.  We came in as a team prepared for God to use us and he did.

About brhoda

I freelance doing a few different thing in the video and live production market. I worked for a church for 5 years directing services and designing control rooms.
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1 Response to Christmas from the Director’s chair

  1. Mark Hanna says:

    Just found this blog, as a fellow video director I totally get “Directing cameras and working with people behind the scenes has become the way I worship” it’s the same for me.

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