Robin Bloom offers 30 suggestions for fun this Valentine weekend and beyond.
RAIN: A Tribute to the Beatles
Go on a musical journey through the life and times of one of the most influential bands in the world with the smash Broadway hit RAIN: A Tribute to the Beatles, February 11-14 at the Merriam Theater. The live multi-media spectacular has been expanded to include more songs from the bands’s discography with note-for-note delivery by the foursome, 250 S. Broad Street, Philadelphia. Photo by Richard Lovrich.
BalletX Winter Series 2016
The contemporary ballet company BalletX’s Winter Series 2016 offers seven performances, February 10-14, at the Wilma Theater. The varied program features the work of three diverse choreographers. Trey McIntyre, working with BalletX dancers for the first time, offers a world premiere, Big Ones, exploring the complexities of an artist’s relationship to self-expression and judgment. Matthew Neenan expands the dream-like piece Show Me to two movements. Choreographic fellow Yin Yue presents a world premiere incorporating elements of Chinese classical dance as well as Mongolian and Tibetan folk styles, 265 South Broad Street, Philadelphia. Go behind the scenes with the X-Process, interactive lectures and events, conversations with the artists, and more. Pictured: Trey McIntyre in the background working with dancers Chloe Felesina and Daniel Mayo for Trey’s world premiere of “Big Ones.” Photo by Bill Hebert.
“Hello Sailor: The Sailor Icon in Pop Culture” at the Independence Seaport Museum
Independence Seaport Museum explores the classic image of the sailor in the white “Dixie cup” hat with Hello Sailor: The Sailor Icon in Pop Culture, opening February 11. Guest curator Alex Stadler, owner of stadler-Kahn gallery, brings together a broad range of found images and acquired objects, combined with illustrations by Stadler, graphics, photos, movies, artwork, advertisements, and more through fall 2016, 211 S. Columbus Boulevard, Philadelphia. Photo courtesy of Independence Seaport Museum.
Headed to the White House
Timed to coincide with the 2016 presidential election and the Democratic National Convention coming to Philadelphia this summer, the National Constitution Center offers visits the chance to go on the campaign trail with Headed to the White House, opening Friday, February 12. Created by the NCC, the interactive exhibit explores how elections have changed and remained the same for over 200 years. See artifacts, learn about the history of presidential campaigns with fun presidential facts and see how constitutional amendments have influenced the election process. Plus multimedia and role playing opportunities include launching your own campaign, crafting your own message, entering the floor of a convention, and much more through November 13, 525 Arch Street, Independence Mall, Philadelphia. Admission is free on Presidents’ Day, Monday, February 15. Pictured: President Taft’s Oath of Office, 1909. Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division. Photo courtesy of the National Constitution Center.
The Golden Age of King Midas at Penn Museum
Decades of archaeological excavation by Penn Museum sheds insight into thousands of years of history with the exclusive world premiere exhibition The Golden Age of King Midas, opening February 13 through November 27 at Penn Museum. Unearthed artifacts that bring the ancient world of King Midas and his golden touch to life with ancient treasures from the Republic of Turkey, including chests full of gold with an array of 150 objects, including more than 120 specially-loaned ancient artifacts from four museums in the Republic of Turkey, who worked in partnership with Penn Museum, 3260 South Street, Philadelphia. Opening day celebration is February 13, 10am-4pm, with a Phrygian fashion review, music, pop up mini-talks, storytelling, crafts and more. Valentine events include Penn Flutes: Romance in the Air, Friday, February 12, 12pm, Hieroglyphic Valentines, Sunday, February 14, 1pm-4pm, What’s Love Got to Do With It? Wednesday, February 17, 6pm, in conjunction with the ongoing exhibit SEX: A History in 30 Objects. Photo courtesy of Penn Museum.
Disney’s Beauty and the Beast
Discover the international sensation of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast as the tale as old as time takes to the stage in Philadelphia, February 16-21. Designed by the original creators of the Broadway production, the touring show is directed by Rob Roth and choreographed by Matt West and features the animated film’s score with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by the late Howard Ashman, with additional songs by Alan Menken and Tim Rice, and book by Linda Woolverton, Academy of Music, Broad Street, Philadelphia. Photo by Matthew Murphy.
“Sense and Sensibility” at People’s Light
The regional premiere of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility opens at People’s Light. The romantic story that follows the life and loves of the Dashwood sisters has been adapted by J.R. Sullivan and Joseph Hanreddy, former Artistic Director of Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, who directs the production. The cast of 19 includes a mix of company members and guest performers, three who performed in the premiere of the show at the Utah Shakespeare Festival in June 2014. Onstage February 10 through March 20, 39 Conestoga Road, Malvern, PA. Related programs and events include Scoop on Wednesdays: History, Context, and Gossip, Thursday Talkbacks, Regency Tea at The Farmhouse: Entering Austen’s World, Valentine’s Day at the Farmhouse, open captioned performances and more. Photo by Mark Garvin.
“On Golden Pond” at Civic Theatre of Allentown
Opening February 12 at Civic Theatre of Allentown is the classic American comedy/drama On Golden Pond. The play about Ethel and Norman Thayer, who spend each summer at their home on a lake called Golden Pond and are visited by their grown estranged daughter and her new family, is onstage through February 28 at the historic theater, 527 N. 19th Street, Allentown, PA. Pictured: Barry Glassman and Becky Engborg as the Thayers. Photo courtesy of Civic Theatre of Allentown.
Greater Philadelphia Scottish & Irish Music Festival and Fair
The 24th annual Greater Philadelphia Scottish & Irish Music Festival and Fair returns to the Valley Forge Casino Resort and Convention Center, February 12-14, featuring The John Byrne Band, Albannach, the Hooligans, the Mudmen, Jamison, Screaming Orphans (pictured), and more, with continuous music and activities all weekend. Craft and jewelry vendors, traditional food vendors, dance lessons, kilt making workshops, Scottish and Irish Whiskey tastings, and activities for the whole family. Doors open at 6:30pm Friday night, 1200 First Avenue, King of Prussia, PA. Parking and children 12 and under free. Photo by Bob Felderman.
“A Wonderful Noise” at Villanova Theatre
Villanova Theatre presents the Philadelphia premiere and second-ever production of Michael Hollinger’s A Wonderful Noise, a new barbershop-style musical. Co-written with Vance Lehmkuhl, the play is set in the 1940s, as two barbershop quartets, one male, one female, head to a national competition. The girls (from Philadelphia!), aim to prove that women can do anything men can do and better, disguising themselves as men to infiltrate the male-only Barbershop competition. Directed by Harriet Power through February 21 in Villanova University’s Vasey Hall, Lancaster and Ithan Avenues, Villanova, PA. February 18 is Speaker’s Night, offering a post-show discussion with the playwrights, cast and crew. Free parking in VU’s main lot. Photo by Paola Nogueras.
Some slots are still open for the Clay Studios Valentine’s Day Date Night, Friday, February 12 through Sunday, February 14. Instructors guide you through four-handed throwing by candlelight while enjoying light fare, chocolate, champagne, wine and mood music. Wear or bring clothes to change into that you don’t mind getting dirty. Preregistration required. Also, Chocolate and Beer Pairing, Thursday, February 11, 6:3pm.
Delaware Art Museum hosts a Valentine’s Speakeasy, February 11, 5pm, a speakeasy-inspired party with prohibition-era cocktails, Jazz Age music by Drew Nugent and the Midnight Society, swing dancing demonstrations from the University of Delaware Swing Club, sketching in the galleries, and more, 2301 Kentmere Parkway, Wilmington. Prohibition-era attire encouraged.
Arden Theatre Company’s inaugural Cabaret Series kicks off with the vocalist, actress and multifaceted entertainer Joilet Harris performing From Me to You with Love, Friday, February 12 and Saturday, February 13, 8pm, Studio Theatre at the Hamilton Family Arts Center, 62 N. 2nd Street, Old City, Philadelphia.
Philadelphia Museum of Art hosts an Art After 5: Valentine’s Pre-Party, Friday, February 12, 5pm-8:45pm, with classic love songs courtesy of the Calabash Quartet, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia.
Tongue & Groove, Philly’s unique unscripted theater company, perform their popular Secrets, with a Valentine’s Day twist. The audience is asked to anonymously submit true secrets (of the heart) that they keep and all will be revealed Friday, February 12, 8pm, the Playground at the Adrienne Theater, 2030 Sansom Street, Philadelphia.
The Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre hosts Shakespeare in Love: Open Mic Poetry Night, Friday, February 12, 7pm-9pm, celebrating the greatest love poets from around the world, 2111 Sansom Street, Philadelphia.
The modern day musical comedy and love story I Love You Because takes to the stage at Players Club of Swarthmore, February 12-27. On Sunday, February 14, 8pm, enjoy It Takes Two – A Cabaret of Duets, A PCS Gift for Valentine’s Day, 614 Fairview Avenue, Swarthmore, PA.
Painted Bride Arts Center hosts a salsa dance party, Salsa Caliente, Saturday, February 13, with salsa lessons at 8pm with instructors from Flaco’s Dance Factory and party at 9pm, 230 Vine Street, Philadelphia.
The romantic jazz group The Duo performs a sweet mix of sultry and lighthearted songs at Darlington Arts Center for a Valentine’s Day Coffee House Concert, Saturday, February 13, doors open at 7pm, open mic at 7:30pm, and show at 8pm, 977 Shavertown Road, Garnet Valley, PA.
The comedy/art workshop Painting With a Load On with Christian Alsis takes place Saturday, February 13, 5pm, as couples of every level of artistic ability (and alcohol tolerance) participate in a Valentine’s edition of “Painting with a Twist,” Headlong Studios (formerly the Arts Parlor), 1170 South Broad Street (at Broad and Federal), Philadelphia.
Lansdowne Symphony performs two romantic pieces with Mozart’s Gran Partita for Winds and Rachmaninoff’s Second Symphony, Sunday, February 14, 3pm, Upper Darby Performing Arts Center, 601 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Drexel Hill, PA.
TCNJ celebrates Valentine’s Day with Renaissance and Romance, an evening of music and romance featuring Baroque instrumental ensemble ACRONYM and the vocal ensemble Les Canards Chantant, February 14, 7pm, Mayo Concert Hall, The College of New Jersey, 2000 Pennington Road, Ewing, NJ 08628. Dessert reception during intermission. Free!
Glide along to your favorite love songs at the Sweetheart Skate at the Rothman Institute Ice Rink, February 14, 7pm-11pm, with hot chocolate and flowers, photo keepsake in the lover’s booth, and more, 1 South 15th Street, Philadelphia.
Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site hosts a Valentine’s Day program, Sunday, February 14, 10am-1pm, with the opportunity to see how the holiday was celebrated in the 1800s. Make a Valentine and try your hand at German paper cutting, off of Route 345, five miles south of Birdsboro, PA. For all ages and no charge.
Alone With All of You: A Valentine’s Alternative, an interactive exhibition and concert with Noelle Picara that explores the ideas of aloneness and connection through improvisation, music, theater and audience suggestion, is Sunday, February 14, 2pm, the White Pines Place, 7908 High School Road, Elkins Park, PA.
First Person Arts’ Anti-Valentine’s Day StorySlam returns for a 6th year with “Ex-Files,” true stories about breakups and heartbreak, Sunday, February 14, doors open at 6:30pm and show at 7pm, Underground Arts, 1200 Callowhill Street, Philadelphia.
Jeffrey Gaines performs a Valentine’s Show at Steel City Coffee House, Sunday, February 14, 7pm, 203 Bridge Street Phoenixville, PA.
Catch Valentine’s Day with Joanna Pascale & her band at Chris’ Jazz Café, Sunday, February 14, 5pm, 7pm, and 9pm, 1421 Sansom Street, Philadelphia.
Hoots & Hellmouth’s 9th Annual Valentine’s Day Concert is Sunday, February 14, 7:30pm and 10pm, Tin Angel, 20 S. 2nd Street, Philadelphia.
See Doctor Zhivago on the big screen Wednesday, February 17 at Bryn Mawr Film Institute, with White Russians at the “Russian Tea Party” first at 6pm, followed by the screening at 7pm, 824 W. Lancaster Avenue, Bryn Mawr, PA.
Each week, the Entertainment Guide spotlights interesting local arts offerings happening now, including music, dance, theater, museums, special exhibitions and other arts events from across the region.
To submit an event to be considered, email Robin Bloom at firstname.lastname@example.org.