Gatekeepers. Once or twice we may even need one to fill in for a Holy Family member who is unable to make it. If a nomad slips out of character, or recognizes friends with contemporary language or even a knowledge of current events, the visitors will be in the mindset of going to a play, and perhaps not a good one. We want to create an entire atmosphere of reality. Of stepping into another world, and into another time. Each nomad is given a reason to be out
there, and a basic set of lines to say. They are welcome to ad lib as needed since we never know what people in the crowd will ask or say, but they MUST stay in character and within the confines of the information that will be provided to them about the time period. Nomads (and any character with a speaking part) must attend a training class provided to learn the details of the time period and people who lived back then. They must park at the school in the designated cast parking, arrive at fellowship hall on time each evening of the event as they are scheduled, and be in costume and ready to head to the city when the first call is made. Costumes not including leather sandals are provided by the costume team. After the meeting held at the well each night before opening, we will let the nomads know if any are needed for other roles. “Leftover” nomads remain in the city except when taking a turn as a Line Walker.
Nomads are one of the most important roles in Bethlehem, because they are the “extras” that we use each night to fill gaps when scheduled people cannot be there. Nomads wander the city, giving a populated, realistic look to the streets. They become Line Walkers, shopkeeper’s assistants, Women at the Well, Thieves, Tax Evaders or