As I participated in an emerging event in Singapore’s Indoor Stadium, I was struck by the links between what the live television broadcast revealed to the remote audience and experience of being physically present. The sport is on a journey from English pubs to the rest of the world. It has been a slow journey so far, however it continues to grow. The inaugural event in Singapore is another step.
The host of the event had a microphone set-up for his voice. In the right moments with a technique honed over the years his voice boomed and echoed in the room. It was worthy of an audience ten times the size that was there. As he explained the music that marked a transition to television breaks, he encouraged the audience to show their appreciation. As the orchestrated and rehearsed soundman and host routine unfolded, we learned our queues, practiced our participation, and celebrated the joy at being a part of a wonderful story.
As the show began and the first players were introduced, the noise, excitements, sign waving, singing, and dancing crowd took everything to a new level! It was wonderful bedlam and chaos in the best kind of ways!
As the evening progressed I found myself watching and reflecting. The initial excitement was not the peak. My initial assumptions were smashed with voices that grew louder with everything that followed. The fact that there were a lot of Aussies in the crowd and one in the final was a minor factor but not the main one. This group loved their sport and the opportunity to be a part of it all.
As I think back and reflect, I am still reveling in being a part of something fun. It is good to sing and dance, especially when my favorite claims the trophy. I realized I heard and responded to the echoing call then and now; “Sing hymns to God; all heaven, sing out; clear the way for the coming of Cloud-Rider. Enjoy God, cheer when you see him!” (Psalm 68.4) Celebrations are calls for more.