ARE YOU SITTING DOWN? Jane Birkin, that breathy chanteuse and instigator of
countless fantasies, plays the Portage Theater Monday.
Don’t-miss picks for Wed 11.30.11 through Tue 12.06.11:
pop Jane Birkin
ALSO THIS WEEK: The Louisiana boogie pianist Marcia Ball and the country-rock border crosser Bill Kirchen pair up for two rollicking, swinging, turbocharged nights at FitzGerald’s, 12/2–3.
film Night of the Demon
ALSO THIS WEEK: The Music Box screens Brian De Palma’s 1976 firecracker, Carrie, with a preshow program hosted by Dick O’Day and a postshow Q&A with Carrie’s film mom, Piper Laurie, on 12/4.
ALSO THIS WEEK: The Building Stage capitalizes on Dickens’s own ennui with his classic in Charles Dickens Begrudgingly Performs “A Christmas Carol” Again, 12/1–24.
pop Stew and the Negro Problem
ALSO THIS WEEK: Andrew Bird’s late-December concerts amid a cornucopia of speakers at the MCA are sold out, but you can tiptoe through the installation starting 12/6. Word is Bird is slated to show up and practice unannounced throughout the month; maybe you’ll get lucky.
kid friendly Boston Pops featuring Rockapella
ALSO THIS WEEK: Hubbard Street reprises its dance staging of the iconic 1955 children’s book Harold and the Purple Crayon 12/3–4 at Harris Theater, while Luna Negra Dance Theater presents Moniquilla and the Thief of Laughter 12/3–4 at Stage 773. For even more kid-friendly stuff, see “Freebies,” below.
WHAT I’M DOING THIS WEEKEND
WIDTW is recovering from too many helpings of pumpkin pie. Check back next week for a new installment of weekend plans from a notable, in-the-know local.
FREEBIES OF THE WEEK
dance Dance-Along Nutcracker
Calling all kids and showboating adults: The Department of Cultural Affairs’ seasonal sock hop invites participants of all ages to dress up like their favorite Nutcracker characters and boogie.
GO: 12/4 at noon and 3. Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E Washington. chicagoculturalcenter.org
new music Ensemble Dal Niente
This local pioneer of the new-music frontier goes one further, teaming up with the U. of C.’s Computer Music Studio and seven emerging 20- and 30-something Chicago composers to perform fresh works featuring electronics.
GO: 12/3 at 8. Fulton Hall, U. of C., 5845 S Ellis. dalniente.com
ALSO THIS WEEK: Meanwhile, across town at the city’s other big research institution, the new ensemble on the block Spektral Quartet performs a program written entirely by Northwestern-affiliated composers, including the NU prof Lee Hyla, 12/5.
rock Club Moral
Also on the U. of C. campus—and even less expected: Anne-Mie Van Kerckhoven, whose drawings, collages, and interactive computer animations hang at The Renaissance Society through 12/18, is known in her hometown of Antwerp as one half of the industrial noise-rock outfit Club Moral. Now, 30 years after the group’s founding, she and Danny Devos unleash their aural onslaught in the band’s U.S. debut. A noise-rock concert in the school’s Bond Chapel? Goth, meet gothic.
GO: 12/1 at 8. Bond Chapel, U. of C., 1050 E 59th. renaissancesociety.org
architecture Wright in the City Holiday Open House
If this bummer of an economy means your office canceled its annual holiday party, don’t fret: Grab your favorite coworkers and crash this bash in The Rookery’s Frank Lloyd Wright–designed lobby. Free snacks and live music in a gorgeous space should cure any cubicle blues. But work-party rule number 1 still applies: Go easy on the free Champagne.
GO: 12/1 from 5 to 7. The Rookery, 209 S LaSalle. gowright.org
Photograph: Kate Barry