We weren’t kidding about “Tweeting for Twinkies” at Celebration – and here’s the proof!
Jerome is one of the six people we pulled at random from among those who Tweeted or posted on our Facebook page about their Celebration experience.
The Twinkies have been awarded, but you can still take us up on our offer for 4 free tickets to the performance of your choice at Celebration 2013. All you have to do is tell us about your experience by Dec 31, 2012. We’ll draw one name from among those who share and notify the winner in early January.
So, take a few minutes of your time to share your story and you could be the first person in town – or from out of town – to get their tickets to Celebration next year!
This is it – the last day of Celebration in 2012 with two performances at 2p and 7p. Once church services are over at Houston’s First this morning, the cast and crew will scurry around to get the church ready to receive our 3,000 guests for the matinee.
If you’ve come to Celebration this weekend, we invite you to share your experience with us. Please take a couple of minutes to tell us your stories on our online form. We’ll draw one name from those who submit a form and award them with 4 tickets to the performance of their choice at Celebration 2013!
Opening night is behind us, and five more performances are just ahead! Thanks to everyone who came on Thursday night – in weekday traffic – to experience Celebration at Houston’s First. And, thanks to those who invited guests to possibly hear the message of Christmas for the very first time.
Remember to Tweet about your experience using the hashtag #Celebration12 to possibly win a highly coveted treat. (For the sake of those who have not seen the show, we won’t reveal here what the possible prize is.) Did you take pictures with cast members after the show? If so, share them on our Facebook page at Facebook.com/HFBCCelebration. We saw lots of cameras so we know you have them!
We look forward to seeing the rest of you this weekend as we continue to celebrate the spirit, the songs and the story of Christmas at Celebration!
Tonight is opening night of Celebration at Houston’s First! All the dreaming, planning, meetings, rehearsals, and countless other behind-the-scenes tasks finally come to fruition tonight at 7p. The cast and crew are excited to share Celebration with you!
Throughout the past several months, our prayer has been that Celebration would encourage people who already know Jesus Christ, and introduce Him to people who do not know much about Him. If you already know Him, we invite you to continue that prayer with us throughout this weekend as 18,000 people hear the story of Christmas in a spectacular way.
For those of you who plan on attending Celebration, here are a few reminders that will help you make the most of your experience:
ABOUT THE SHOW
At Celebration, not all of the action is on the stage. The aisles are used by cast members, set pieces and live animals during the show. For your safety, please remain in your seat throughout the performance. If you must leave your seat, Ushers may ask you to remain in “holding seats” until it is safe to return to your seat. Thank you in advance for your cooperation!
This is it! Celebration opens tomorrow night with the first of six performances this weekend. As of this post, just a couple of hundred seats remain available. The Cast and Crew, Choir and Orchestra are honored to provide this musical presentation of the the spirit, the songs and the story of Christmas to nearly 18,000 people!
Rehearsals have gone well this week, with everybody perfecting their cues and memorizing their spots. Even Auggie the dog got his practice in after hanging out in the Worship Ministry suite all day. (He’s on loan from a cast member’s parents.) Auggie appears on stage with fellow cast member Uldine Bisagno, wife of Bro. John Bisagno, the former pastor of Houston’s First.
The current pastor, Gregg Matte, came to rehearsal on Tuesday night to see how things are going. He shared that when he left rehearsal in the Worship Center, he felt as though he were surrounded by angels. Was he? You decide!
If you’re looking for last-minute tickets for yourself or others, your best chance will be at Thursday night’s performance. Some scattered seats remain for other shows, but they are limited. Unused tickets are sometimes returned to the Box Office prior to each show and are made available for purchase. The number of tickets turned in vary per performance and there is no guarantee of availability. The Box Office opens 2 hours prior to each show.
The little guy who plays Boy Jesus was up past his bedtime one evening at Celebration rehearsal this weekend. So, we didn’t mind that his “costume” that night was his Christmas PJs. He’ll look more like a 1st century kid when you come to see the show this weekend.
Speaking of the show – it’s almost here! The curtain goes up in just a few days at the first performances on Thursday night.
If you’re still looking for tickets for yourself or to invite others, the best availability is on Thursday night at 7p and Sunday night at 7p. The rest of the performances are either sold out or mostly limited to scattered singles.
But, if people have to come and sit separately, it’s better than not seeing it at all – right?
The latest album from the Choir & Orchestra at Houston’s First arrived today –– One Day: The Story of Celebration.
We’ve told you about it on here before, and shared some behind-the-scenes pictures of what it takes to record and produce an album like this. Here’s the final list of songs included on this album featuring music from the story portion of Celebration:
Five of the songs (*) were written and arranged by John Bolin, the Minister of Worship & Arts at Houston’s First. You’ll only find them on One Day.
One Day is the fourth album from the Choir & Orchestra at Houston’s First. Previous releases include Jesus Saves (2009) and All Is Well (2010) – both with music from Celebration – and Declare His Glory (2012), a collection of some of the group’s favorite worship songs. All of these albums will be available during Celebration and at Corner Books inside Houston’s First.
To an outsider, Celebration may seem to be just one more of the various Christmas-themed shows taking place all over town this time of year. But Houston’s First wants to provide more than just entertainment. Instead, Celebration seeks to present the message of Christmas in a way that’s engaging and inspiring – and of course, entertaining, too!
Here’s what some people in recent years have said about their Celebration experience:
“Celebration was not what I expected to experience! It strengthened my relationship with Jesus. I didn’t think a show could do that.” – Nicole
“Celebration was extremely uplifting, and I could tell that lots of the people were different afterwards. I even heard a man behind me whisper the salvation prayer.” – Twila
“Celebration was enough to win my mother’s attention and heart.” – Elaine
“God used Celebration to convict me and save me.” – Christopher
That is why we do Celebration! The curtain goes up one week from today. Get tickets for your family and friends – and especially those who need to hear the story of Christmas.
Not all of the Celebration cast members you’ll see on stage will be singing, dancing or playing an instrument. No, we’re not talking about the live animals (even though they have been known to make some sounds and stray a little off their mark).
We’re talking about the silent, unassuming members of the Celebration team who are pushed around by others, often get stepped on, and by the end of the performances may have some cuts and scrapes to show for it.
They’re the set pieces – the large contraptions that transform the Worship Center into anything from first century Bethlehem to a modern-day winter wonderland.
In recent years, the Stage Crew referred to two particular set pieces as “Big Mama” and “Little Mama” – the similar-looking pieces used in the story portion of Celebration. “Big Mama” and “Little Mama” were used separately, and then came together to form Jesus’ tomb. This year, a new set piece will replace the the two Mamas. It doesn’t have a nickname just yet, but we’re open to ideas!
Also new this year is an ice skating rink. Yes, an ice skating rink! Houstonians are used to watching skaters indoors at The Galleria just down the road from Houston’s First, but this may be the first time they’ve witnessed them inside a church!
With just over 2 weeks left until opening night, the shows with the most availability are on Thu, Dec 6, at 7p, and Sun, Dec 9, at 7p. The other shows have varying degrees of availability, so you’ll have to check to see if you can find the number of tickets you need.