Saturday, December 17, 2016
Go see Frank Babbitt perform "A Christmas Carol" at 2 p.m.
We met four friends Friday night at the Winnetka Community House to see Frank Babbitt perform a dramatic reading of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol." It was a lovely evening, just like before — Edie and I saw him do it a couple years ago, and were keen to go back, and felt obligated to press others to go with us.
It's a natural reaction. After we heard Frank's powerful, thrilling performance, falling easily into the voices of Scrooge, Bob Cratchit, Marley's ghost, Tiny Tim, and all the other marvelous characters in the tale, punctuated by passages of carols and dances and tunes played on the viola—Frank is a violist at the Lyric Opera—Edie said exactly what she said last time, "He needs better publicity."
It's not that the performance wasn't well-attended. It was. Thirty people or so, filling out the small, intimate space, more or less. But they could have had a few dozen more. There should have been.
Consider this. Tickets are $10. You don't have to haul downtown. You don't have to pay to park. You can buy tickets at the door. Ten bucks. They give you coffee and sweets. You hear a deathless classic tale—based on the 1868 reading copy written by Dickens himself— read by a masterful actor who is also a world class musician. You get to laugh—Dickens is very funny. And cry, over poor Tiny Tim. Oh, and it'll get you in the proper Christmas spirit and remind you that, even if you are not a Scrooge-caliber jerk, there is always time to be a better person.
Quite a lot, really. There really should be people hanging from the rafters when he does this—and Saturday afternoon, Dec. 17 at 2 p.m. is the last time he's doing it this year. I'm tempted to go and I saw it last night.
Anyway, whatever you're planning to do this afternoon, if you're within 25 miles of Winnetka, you won't have nearly as much memorable fun as if you decide, aw what the heck, you'll go hear Frank deliver "A Christmas Carol." You can't say you weren't told. You can find details about Saturday's performance at 2 p.m. by clicking here. Afterward, you can write to me about how much you loved it.