As holiday standbys go, a production of A Christmas Carol is about as essential as the tree. Everyone knows the drill: Theres the famed miser, Scrooge, and the triad of ghosts who try to guide him from his greed. Theres the good-hearted Bob Cratchit, whos trying to scrape together some semblance of a holiday for his impoverished family. And, of course, theres the moral: Christmas is about spending time with friends and family, not about hoarding your treasures. Hackneyed message? Hardly. Looking the Alley Theatres sets of foggy London in the time of gas lanterns and wheeled carts, it might occur to you that Dickens, in 1843, published his tale well before gift cards, mega-malls and supersales and even then greed could trump togetherness. So its a message worth hearing again and the Alleys top-notch production will make it a painless one.
Tonights 7:30 p.m. performance and tomorrows 2:30 p.m. show are both -previews. Through December 29. 615 Texas. For tickets and a full schedule, call 7132205700 or visit www.alley-theatre.org. $38 to $67.
Nov. 20-Dec. 29, 2007