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Arts/Culture/Weekend: Valentine’s Day sing-a-long, crosscultural performances, silent film and more

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Whether it makes you weak in the knees or weak in the stomach, Valentine’s Day weekend is inescapably upon us. Highlights include cinematic love letters to the May-December romance, 80s power ballads for jilted lovers, and one of the biggest record swaps around. When that’s all said and done, film festivals, Lunar New Year celebrations and music abounds.

Welcome to your Arts/Culture/Weekend:


HAROLD AND MAUDE  // There’s no better time of year to revisit this charming tale of a death-obsessed young man and a free-spirited septuagenarian who become unlikely soul mates. Theaters on both sides of the bay are running special screenings in honor of Valentine’s Day. The Landmark Clay Theatre in San Francisco has midnight shows Thursday through Saturday and Oakland’s New Parkway is offering two shows on Valentine’s Day only. You may recognize a cemetery scene shot in Colma, the Bay Area’s own “City of Souls,” and soundtrack by the artist formerly known as Cat Stevens. // DETAILS: Feb. 14-16, 11:55pm, Clay Theatre, 2261 Fillmore St., SF. Cost: $10; New Parkway: Feb. 14, 9pm and 9:45pm, 474 24th St., Oakland. Cost: $6.

EIGHTIES POWER BALLAD SING-A-LONG // Love hurts, love scars, love drives you to scream REO Speedwagon at the top of your lungs. This Valentine’s Day, SF Indiefest’s annual 80s power ballad sing-a-long is back, in all its glam rock glory. Trading white tablecloths and candles for White Snake and lighters in the air, this event promises a choice alternative to your typical romantic evening. There will be music videos, lyrics, and lots of hairspray. // DETAILS: Feb. 14, 9:30pm, Roxie Theater, 3117 16th St., SF; Cost: $10 advance / $12 door.


IRISH AND CHINESE CROSS-CULTURAL CONCERT // Now through Sunday, the Garden Gate Creativity Center is hosting various performances in honor of the Lunar New Year. Friday features a special cross-cultural program. Diana Rowan and Winnie Wong have prepared performances of Chinese and Irish music using harp, guzheng and piano. Violinist Colm O’Riain will join them. If you’ve never heard “Oh Danny Boy” played on a Chinese zither, here’s your chance. // DETAILS: Feb. 15, 8pm, Garden Gate Creativity Center, 2911 Claremont Ave., Berkeley; Cost: $15 advance / $17 doors.


SILENT WINTER // The San Francisco Silent Film Festival isn’t until July, but luckily we don’t have to wait until then for our next silent cinema fix. The Castro Theatre is being taken over Saturday for a full day of programming, with films ranging from romantic, to comedic, to surreal. They include “Snow White” (1916); three rare Buster Keaton shorts, “One Week” (1920), “Scarecrow” (1920) and “The Play House” (1921); “The Thief of Baghdad” (1924); “Faust” (1926) and “My Best Girl” (1927). The films will be accompanied by live music. Tickets are on sale for individual screenings. // DETAILS: Feb. 16, various times, Castro Theatre, 429 Castro St., SF; Cost: $5-$15.

WEST OAKLAND RECORD SALE // Vinyl collectors and sellers are flocking to a warehouse in West Oakland on Saturday for a huge record sale. Organizers expect representation from most genres including jazz, rock, Latin, soul, hip-hop, country, folk boogie, electronic and reggae. There should be something for everyone, with hard-to-find albums and plenty of affordable choices on hand. // DETAILS: Feb. 16, 10am-4pm, 2601 Adeline St., Oakland; Cost: FREE.


LUNAR NEW YEAR CELEBRATION // Welcome the Year of the Snake at the Oakland Museum with a family-friendly Lunar New Year bash that celebrates Asian cultures through a diverse program of performances. Expect a heart-pounding drum show, eye-popping acrobatics and plate spinning, mind-bending yo-yo demonstrations, a lion dance you’ll never forget, and much more. There will also be the unique opportunity to see traditional mochi pounding. // DETAILS: Feb. 17, noon-4:40pm, Oakland Museum, 1000 Oak St., Oakland; Cost: Included with museum admission.

Arts/Culture/Weekend is a roundup of our favorite events coming up. Please do let us know if you know  of an interesting event coming up in your neighborhood.