Saturday night I saw magic happen in Skokie. Actually I couldn't see it really clearly. It was dark.
I went with my family to see a show at the village's main performance theater. This is the place that has regular subscription series for theater, classical music and many artists you kind of forgot were still around. Walking in to the lobby this Saturday night there was an abundance of walkers in the crowd (my dad's included) and the average age was, to quote a funny Facebook friend of mine, hospice.
The show we were seeing was a tribute to New Orleans funk, native, blues & rock music. We were up in the balcony. Looking over the heads of grey hair below me I kept feeling like this audience must have some sort of series tickets and just came tonight not really knowing what they were going to hear.
The lights go down and oh-my-Gd! The artists on the stage blew me away. They were outstanding!! There stood Ivan Neville, George Porter Jr, Big Chief Boudreaux in his beautiful full feathered pony-tailed regalia and many more immensely talented musicians. The bands ripped through old-school funk, brass, praise...amazing music.
And then the magic happened.
In the dark around me those grey-haired people got up and....boogied. Like truly the definition of boogied. They were up and shaking all that they had. I promise you very little alcohol is ever sold at this theater. There was no liquid courage helping them get up and do all that. For the ones who couldn't get up as easily, they were waving their arms, clapping and whooping it up.
In the dark this crowd transformed and with that, reminded me of something. When I see older people out at restaurants or the store I tend to automatically label them as simply old. I dismiss any idea that they have interests in New Orleans funk or that they may have been regular concert goers when their hair was not as silver. Getting old somehow makes one seem like they have zero history & zero funky interests. This is so wrong of me to feel - and in the dark of that Skokie theater that notion was boogied out of my mind forever.
Sarah Rothschild, Realtor & Architectural History Nerd.