San Francisco Symphony (credit:

It’s hard to go wrong with champagne and flowers, but where do you go after dinner before the evening’s denouement? Everybody’s taste is different, but the following show suggestions will certainly appeal to somebody’s sense of the romantic. The following selections include cutting-edge modern music, a hip band in a romantic location, hot Flamenco, cool comedy and Tchaikovsky performed by the San Francisco Symphony.

(credit: Beach Blanket Babylon)

Beach Blanket Babylon
Club Fugazi
678 Beach Blanket Babylon Blvd.
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 421-4222

Date: Feb. 14, 2014 at 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

“Beach Blanket Babylon” has been tickling the fancies of San Francisco locals and tourists since 1974. That makes it the longest running musical revue in the American theatre. Astonishingly, after all this time, reviewers continue to celebrate this silliness by the bay. The show features famously outrageous hats along with send-ups of pop culture icons with parody versions of popular songs. If your Valentine thinks laughter is an aphrodisiac, “Beach Blanket Babylon” will deliver handsomely.

BALLET FLAMENCO w/ Carolina Lugo and Carolè Acuña
Peña Pachamama Center
16430 Powell St.
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 646-0018

Peña Pachamama celebrates South American music and culture in a building that once housed a famous speakeasy. Flamenco dancer Carolina Lugo is one of the most respected artists in her field and has performed worldwide. Pachamama is her home base, and you can find her here on most Friday nights, and certainly on Valentine’s Day. The poet Robert Frost wrote, “Dance is a vertical expression of a horizontal desire,” and this is certainly true of Flamenco. This is the real sexy, and twerking can’t hold a candle to it.

(credit: Bill Dean/

Origins: A Steven Schick Recital
Jewish Community Center of California
3200 California Street
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 292-1200

Date: Feb. 14, 2014 at 8 p.m.

If your Valentine is serious about modern concert music, this concert will be a great thrill. Steven Shick is one of the leading percussion virtuosos of our time, and this recital will be his first solo performance in San Francisco in more than three decades. Works by the 20th century avant garde will include pieces by Xenakis, Tenney, Globokar, Lachenmann, Feldman and Stockhausen. If you know these composers, you’ll want to hear this concert.

(credit: San Francisco Symphony)

San Francisco Symphony: Van Zweden Conducts Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony
Davies Symphony Hall
201 Van Ness Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 864-6000

Date: Feb. 14, 2014 at 8 p.m.

The most romantic of romantics was the Russian composer Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Like so many masterpieces, Tchaikovsky’s Fourth was not understood or appreciated when it premiered. Nowadays, though, it is recognized as Tchaikovsky’s greatest symphony and is one of the most performed pieces in the symphonic repertoire. And if, perchance, you and your Valentine are similarly gendered, you can appreciate together Tchaikovsky’s place as one of the great gay geniuses of history.

(credit: Last.FM)

Band of Horses
Palace of Fine Arts
3601 Lyon Street
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 831-2700

Dated: Feb. 14, 2014 at 8 p.m.

Seattle’s GRAMMY-Nominated Band Of Horses is known for its deeply emotional songs and indie-rock sounds. Although not one of the most well-known bands on the scene, this group does boast a core of devoted followers and this concert should be something special. As a Valentine’s Day choice, this should be especially romantic because of the remarkable venue. The Palace of Fine Arts is one of San Francisco’s architectural marvels, a truly beautiful building in a truly beautiful locale. Before and after the concert, walk around with your Valentine to enjoy amazing views of the San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge.

Charles Kruger is well known in the Bay area as “The Storming Bohemian” ever since he entered the Bay Area cultural scene in the summer of 2009, attending 90 cultural events in 90 days and blogging about it. This project was successful enough to warrant a mention in The New York Times. His coverage of Bay area theatre can be found at