LET IT BE CHRISTMAS: The Gospel According to Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, George & Ringo.

I just got back from the opening night of a brand new musical put on by COMMUNITY’S Epic Theater.  The musical is Let It Be Christmas:  The Gospel According To Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, George & Ringo  and it was brilliant.  The music was terrific and the way they told the story of Christmas using tunes from Beatles was a piece of creative genius.  Congratulations to Eric and Elic and the whole gang that made this happen.

If you are in the Chicago area you still have three nights to see Let It Be Christmas, December 19th at 7:30 pm; December 20th at 8:30 pm and December 21st at 7:30 pm at the Yellow Box in Naperville.

FALLAPALOOZA: Friday, November 7th @ Yellow Box

FallapaloozaIf you are looking for a chance to introduce your friend or a neighbor for the first time to COMMUNITY, you should consider inviting them to FallapaloozaFallapalooza is a celebration of the best art of the year from COMMUNITY.  It will include the best from each of our campuses with musical specials like “It’s Not My Time”, “I Love Trash” and “Viva La Vida.”  It will also include the best videos we have produced this past year and a little improve just for fun.  The doors will open at 6:30 pm on Friday, November 7th at the Yellow Box in Naperville and the show starts at 7:00 pm. It will be a terrific event for you, your family and anyone you would like to invite to experience what COMMUNITY is like.  It will be a great time!

Where Can You Find A Drummer For This Weekend?


If you asked me, “Dave where should I look for a used car?” I’d say, “check out craigslist.”  And if you asked me “where can I find a hub cab for my ’96 Nissan Maxima GXE?”  I’d say, “check out craigslist.” And if you asked me, “where can I find a drummer for my band this weekend?”  Again I’d say, “check out craigslist.” Seriously.  I discovered that many of our Campus Arts Directors post ads on craigslist searching for band members and get lots of responses.  Sam Menesses, who leads the arts at CCC-Pilsen has found over 30 artists thru craigslist.  Tommy Bowman who leads the arts at a NewThing church in Kasas City has found more than 18 artists in just the first six months of the life of Restore Community Church.  I was told that most of these artists are musicians who were in churches where they weren’t being used or churches that didn’t play the kind of music they like to play.  So, looking for artists?  Try an ad in craigslist.

Developing more and better Artists

Sfta_2 There are two things we must continue to do well to reproduce more sites, churches and networks. The first is to develop more and better leaders who are followers of Christ.  And the second is to develop more and better artists who are followers of Christ.

Much of our leader and artist development occurs through informal and relational processes.  But we also have put a great deal of effort into the formal development of leaders and artists.  One of the primary ways that we develop artists is through our School for the Arts. Our School for the Arts has grown to more than 20 instructors and 350 students. If you would like a peek at our 2008 summer School for the Arts brochure then click HERE.

CCC videos on Nightline tonight!

Nightline_2I just got a voice mail from Eric Bramlett telling me that Tom Greever (CCC’s video guy) got a phone call from ABC Television saying that they are doing a special on GodTube.com tonight on Nightline.  They said it will include the Christian vs. Christ-Follower videos. This series of videos has had more than a million total hits so far! They already have a preview on their site which includes our Mac/PC parody and also Dan Smiths parody Baby Got Book.  Funny stuff!  So if you get a chance to check it out on Nightline let me know what you think.

10.19.07 edit:  I watched Nightline last night and did not see our videos…??  But if you check out the ABC News website it is showing the Christian vs. Christ-Follower video.  Still cool.

Behind The Music? Collaboration!

Ccc_arts_3A big part of the success of our creative arts and music ministry is found in the value of collaboration.  We not only collaborate on creative content across all age groups (kids, students and adults) we also collaborate across all eight Community Christian sites in Chicago and we also collaborate with NewThing Network churches all over the country.

In the most recent issue of The Christian Standard is an article titled, Behind The Music.  In this article Jen Taylor describes the collaborative process we use to create the BIG IDEA.  She gets the perspective from one of our Denver affiliate churches, Jacobs Well and also the perspective from a former California affiliate who chose to go on it’s own.  It’s worth the read.

Developing Young Artists

Caleb_joseph_musical_2We have over 400 students that are now a part of Community Christian Church’s School for the Arts.  (If you would like to see a sample of our summer program, click HERE.)  The dream behind the SFTA is to develop more and better artists.  Why?  Because we believe that if we are ever to accomplish the vision of 200 CCC locations in the Chicago area there are two things we have to do well:  1. Develop more and better leaders.  2. Develop more and better artists.

Tonight I went to see one of those young artists – my 9 year old son Caleb.  He was part of a musical camp that met for the last couple weeks and tonight put on a stomp musical, Joseph: From the Pit to the Palace.  The pic to the left is of Caleb and his friend Jared in costume.  Caleb had the lead role as Joseph and did a great job.  He not only had his lines memorized, but seem to have everyone else’s memorized and was ready to cue them if they forgot. They did a good job and the kids seem to have lots of fun.  The last thing Caleb said to me after the performance was, “Dad, I think I want to do this again next year.”  I love how we are developing young artists for the future.