Trish and Harold's Weblog

News, information, and random thoughts from the busy lives of Trish Egan and Harold Phillips.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

12 Posts of Christmas: Get Out And Share The Spirit

As I've said so often before, it doesn't really feel like Christmas unless I get the chance to get up and perform for an audience at least ONCE during the holiday season. Part of it is sheer habit - I've been doing holiday shows for so long that a December without one just feels odd... but the larger, more enduring reason I love performing during this season is the sheer joy of sharing the holiday spirit with people I've never met; seeing a room full of people laugh or cry or cheer (depending on the play) as they all come together to share a joyous moment during this joyous time.

Unfortunately, schedules didn't permit me do any holiday performing this year (our trip to Maui kind of got in the way of things), but I'm not planning on missing out on that shared experience entirely - Portland has lots of options for live holiday entertainment, with shows and live music running throughout December (and, in some cases, right up to Christmas Eve!) My bet is that, if you live outside Portland, your town or community isn't all that different - there are lots of options for live entertainment during the holiday season.
Now, I can hear some of the cynics out there muttering to themselves about these holiday themed shows... "...cashing in..." "...hoping to sell tickets to carry the company through the rest of the year..." "...same old-same old..." Well, I say a hearty Humbug to that kind of talk. Sure, theater companies are trying to sell tickets to families this time of year, and yes - often the holiday show is the big seller for the year that helps them get through the rest of the year.
So what?
Seriously, the reason holiday shows help balance the budget for a lot of theater companies is simple - people want to be entertained during this time of year. They want to see familiar stories retold in new ways, or they want to see new stories that help evoke that warm feeling in the audience's heart. A well-done holiday play helps to infuse us all with that sense of joy and wonder that this season is supposed to be about - and it does it to a whole roomfull of people!

So, go on! Get out of the house; brave the weather and meet some new people in the lobby, sit back and enjoy a show - theater is a magical experience at all times, but during the holidays there's an extra dash of something special that you get to share with people all around you; people you may know or may not. By the time the curtain goes down (metaphorically - I mean, how many theaters have curtains these days?) you'll be closer to each and every one of them.
And that's kind of what the season's about, isn't it?