It is that time of year again; time for us to find those boxes that have been hidden all year, brush off the dust, and start hanging up the Christmas decorations! It is also that time of year where we jump into our cars and drive around aimlessly trying to find the tackiest decorations so we can judge our neighbors and feel a little better about ourselves-it is only the holiday spirit after all! Most things are better in moderation. This is especially true for both Christmas decorations and theatre.
When decorating one’s house for Christmas, simplicity is key. When you over crowd your house with unnecessary cheap crap, you just look trashy. Pick items that highlight your house’s architecture and help exemplify the Christmas message. The same could be said about theatre technical elements. One should only use items, effects, etc, that help highlight the message. The other things are just unnecessary like that giant blowup snow globe, or the life size Santa statue.
Time for a quick digression…
Item’s on Anna Naughty (Decoration) List:
- Anything that blows up. Stop. Just no. NO!
- Lights that are any other color than white. We no longer live in the sixties where art deco was still ok. If you own a color TV, you do not need color Christmas lights.
- Wooden figures. Nuff said
- Plastic figures of the Navity scene. It makes everyone uncomfortable. This is no way respecting Jesus.
- ALSO…if you don’t know how to wrap lights around your trees or garland, hire someone
I am fortunate enough to go to a school that understands the proper way to decorate for the holidays. The other night I was able to attend Elon University’s annual luminaire celebration. The night is filled with carols, hot chocolate, and Christmas cheer. It concluded as Elon’s campus became lit in white lights.
In doing the decorations properly- simple and classy- Elon was able to create a truly magical experience for all who attended. As the lights went up one at a time, I was in awe and even became a tad emotional. The beauty of Elon’s campus, buildings, and trees were not hidden with neon flashing lights and big Rudolph figurines, but instead highlighted to show its best features. It was just example of how technical elements, when used properly, can create a magical experience for the audience.