Friday, Feb. 12
• Malaprop’s hosts a chocolate and wine tasting. “Join us for a pre-Valentine’s hedonists’ paradise!” says the press release. A sommelier from Weinhaus discusses several wine varieties, chocolates are from The Chocolate Fetish and each ticket holder receives a rose from Bloomin’ Art. Seating is limited. 6 p.m., $15. Info: 254-6734.
• Canadian Classical-crossover group Destino jump-starts Valentine’s weekend at Diana Wortham Theatre. The trio of trained tenors blend opera, pop, gospel and soul. 8 p.m., $30/$28 seniors/$25 students/$12 children.
• Cabaret/Burlesque collective Bombs Away Cabaret presents Eat Your Heart Out: A knockout thriller at the Asheville Arts Center. The original production, combines a satirical plot with live music and sideshow song and dance vignettes. Food, beer and wine are offered by donation; profits go toward the medical bills of local playwright Jo Carson. Friday and Saturday nights, 8 p.m. $12.
Saturday, Feb. 13
• If pink hearts and rose petals aren’t exactly your style, consider An Evening of Dark Love at the Boiler Room. “Come explore an alternative to Cupid’s sissy little arrows and feel the impalement of deep hard slicing tunes,” suggest event organizers. Angels on Acid, DJs Kri and Psyonic of T.O.U.C.H. Samadhi and End: The DJ (pictured below) perform. 8 p.m., $10.
• Jazz singer Cheri Cagle hosts a Valentine’s Day dance at White Horse Black Mountain. 8 p.m., $8.
• Go back in time at the Big Band Sweetheart Dance. The event is slated to “bring back the golden days of big band dancing at the one-of-a-kind location of the hangar of the WNC Air Museum, where the feature décor is airplanes from the decades surrounding the Second World War.” Music is provided by the 17-piece Hendersonville Swing Band, under the direction of Jerry Zink. Tickets are $100 each and include cocktails and dinner. 6-10 p.m. Info: 693-0731.
• Singer/songwriter Angela Easterling invites fans to “Have an early Valentines Day with me!” She performs at the Saluda Inn Wine Cellar (229 Greenville Street, Saluda) at 8 p.m. The evening also involved food and wine and a super-romatic setting (up the ante: reserve a room). 8 p.m., no cover.
• It’s Loveapalooza at Club 828. Dance/electronica acts Mindelixir (pictured, below), Agobi Project, Sonmi Suite, EP3, Skew Records Crew and Total Recall perform. 8 p.m., $10.
Sunday, Feb. 14
• Short Street Cakes celebrates its one year anniversary with a Mardi Gras Valentine’s Birthday Party . Says the bakery, “Festivities will include Mardi Gras beads, live music, a cake raffle (to benefit AMURT/Haiti fund), the launching of the 2010 menu, and Valentine’s specials (such as our signature “Sweethearts and Broken Hearts” tiny heart shaped cakes).” Noon-6 p.m.
• If at first Mardi Gras With Heart sounds more like debauchery than romance, think again. Chalotte-based Cajun and Creole band Carolina Gator Gumbo crank out high-spirited tunes perfect for two-stepping with your sweetie. Don’t know how to dance? Come early (5 p.m.) for a lesson. Grey Eagle, 6 p.m. $8 in advance, $10 day of show.
• Visit the Asheville Art Museum for a Valentine’s Day Pianoforte Concert Featuring Deborah Belcher and John Cobb. The concert celebrates the legendary relationship and artistry of Robert and Clara Wieck Schumann; music is interspersed with readings from the Schumanns’ letters and diaries. 3 p.m. $5 Museum Members, $5 + museum admission for non-members.
• Jazz/r&b project Vanism from Illinois performs a special afternoon concert at St. Mathias Episcopal Church (1 Dundee St., Asheville). Highlights include jazz standards and original compositions. Admission is free, but donations are accepted toward restoration of the church. 3 p.m.
• Love makes the world go ‘round, especially when it comes to the Valentine’s Extravaganza benefitting Asheville Prison Books to be held at Rosetta’s Kitchen from 6-9 p.m. Here’s what’s happening: “Rosetta’s soup and cornbread, music and performances by One Tough Cookie, Well Sung and The Runaway Circus and the Loose Caboose and a pie and date auction — bid on the pie and get a date with its baker!” Info: 225-3854.
• Dinner and a show: Mo Daddy’s serves up a “Lovey Dovey Special” ($20 for two!) starting at 5 p.m.; music from The Asheville Skyline Band (backing up performers including Amanda Platt, Galen Kipar, Chris O’Neill and Union County) starts at 7 p.m. $10 for the show.
• Boo Reiners and Elena Skye of folk/bluegrass act Demolition String Band play a special Valentine’s Day “power duo” show at Jack of the Wood. Says, the band, “Love songs, cheatin’ songs, murder ballads, and maybe a Sonny & Cher cover, will make for a special evening for you and yer beloved.” 8 p.m.
• Round out Valentine’s Day in style: Jazz/pop/electronica duo Paper Tiger performs at . The venue goes all out for the lovey-dovey holiday; Paper Tiger’s downtempo sound sets the perfect swanky mood. 9 p.m.
—Alli Marshall, A&E reporter