With contributions by Elise Thompson.
Mirror, mirror, on the wall, which holiday is the most manipulative of all? Over-booked exclusive restaurants, if-you-have-to-ask-you-can’t-afford-it roses, and after-dinner bedroom stress and apprehension: everyone has had that one bad date in their lives. And chances are it happened on that blackest of days when pressure and expectation are at their highest for couples: Valentine’s Day.
As Hallmark holidays go, Valentine’s Day is the one destined each year to break hearts, as well as bank accounts, when things don’t go well. For singles, it can bring on equal stress and unwarranted self-judgment, especially if you are not yet fortunate enough to see how blissfully free you are. But for a day that should be all about love, this one doesn’t have to suck all the air out of your life, or your love life, and neither does it have to be celebrated on just that one day of the year.
Here is a list of Valentine’s Day-themed things to do in L.A., and do it differently, for couples, singles, Galentine’s and Palentine’s, that won’t require you to wade through over-crowded dining rooms, rent a tux, open a small loan, or even be “in love.”
The Break-Up Bar Pop Up, Friday, January 31, 2020, through Sunday, February 16, 2020
includes a complimentary cocktail or sparkling wine flight, and inside is featured an 8 foot wall of broken relationships, an art exhibit of “relics of Valentine’s Day past,” and a giant projection screen with classic breakup movies. Choose to revel in your freedom as a happy single–or drown in your self-pity, if you are into that–with champagne, punches, and other wine-based cocktails, as well as cakes, dessert fondues, cookie towers, and loads of other sweets.
The Break-Up Bar is open Monday – Thursday, 7 p.m. – 11 p.m., Friday – Saturday 7 p.m. – Midnight, and Sunday (Brunch) February 9th and 16th 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. 21+ with valid ID
Tickets are $20, for Evening and Brunch. Tickets are selling out fast.
Severance Wine Bar – 7276 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, 90046
Doo-wop & Motown Valentine’s Dance Gala +DJ Perkandkisses’ Bday, Thursday, February 13, 2020, 9:30 p.m. – 1:30 a.m.
This pre-Valentine’s dance party is dedicated to oldies genres Doo-wop and Motown, as well as to celebrate DJ Perksandkisses, Alicia Perkins’, birthday, who will spin at the Dance Gala for the evening, along with Whitegoth and DJ Philly Freedom, at “L.A.’s only oldies variety club.”
Aside from Doo-wop and Motown, the gala will feature music selections from the 50s, 60s and 70s oldies dance catalog—everything from rock’n roll to disco, funk and soul, and more. Attendees whose birthday is the same week as the event can contact the organizers at the event page for free entry and bottle of champagne!
Tickets cash at the door are $6 before 10 p.m. with Facebook RSVP, $8 after with Facebook RSVP, and $9 all night without RSVP, or purchase online with discount code by “going” RSVP on Facebook page.
Club 96 TEARS – 943 N Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Galentine’s Day/Palentine’s Day
English High Tea & Theater: Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband, February 7–29, 2020
Enjoy the classic Oscar Wilde comedy, An Ideal Husband, in an immersive English high-tea dining experience. The high tea includes tea sandwiches, savories, scones with clotted cream and jam, dessert selections, and a pot of tea, with vegetarian-friendly, vegan-friendly, and gluten-free options.
English High Tea & Theater: Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband showtimes are Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7 p.m., and Sundays at 6 p.m. This immersive show is 2 hours, 13 and older recommended and the avenue is wheelchair-accessible.
Tickets are $60 on Goldstar, $79 otherwise.
Madeline Garden Bistro & Venue – 1030 E Green St, Pasadena, 91106
LuchaVaVOOM annual Valentine’s show “Pin Ups ‘N Pin Downs,”
Wednesday, February 12, 2020, and Thursday, February 13, 2020, 8 p.m.
Lucha VaVOOM the high-octane “glam/slam” cocktail of authentic masked Mexican wrestling, burlesque performances, aerialists, low riders, tequila, and comedy, mixes again for a special Valentine’s show, “Pin Ups ‘N Pin Downs.” Highlights are to include live music by special musical guest, Starcrawler, and Mini superstar wrestlers Microman and Chamuel, who will face off for the first time in the U.S.
The wrestling card for Wednesday, January 12, 2020, includes Magno and Taya Valkarye vs. Soberano Jr. and El Bombero (WWE Cruiser Weight Champ as TJP,) and Joey Ryan and Microman vs. Chocolatay Caliente and Chamuel (Main Event.) The wrestling card for Thursday, January 13, 2020, includes Mariachi Loco and Lil Cholo vs. Los Crazy Chickens, and Pantera Lisa and Katerina Leigh vs. The Sexi Mexi’s (Main Event.)
Tickets for this 21+ event. Doors open at 7 p.m., and the shows are at 8 p.m.
The Mayan Theater – 1038 South Hill Street, Los Angeles, 90015
The spanking-new digs of the Bob Baker Marionette Theater in Highland Park will be transformed into turn-of-the-century Paris for the night only. Live performances, party favors, custom poetry, and a photo booth.
“Voulez vous” because we “can, can, can” as Harold Zidler leads a singalong to Baz Luhrmann’s final installment to his Red Curtain trilogy and vibrant homage to love, with a soundtrack filled with Christina Aguilera, Beck, Pink, Fatboy Slim, Lil’ Kim, Bono, doing covers of David Bowie, Patti LaBelle, Elton John, and more.
Bob Baker Marionette Theater – 4949 York Blvd., Los Angeles, 90042
A Vampire Weekend
My Dreary Valentine: An Anti-Valentine’s Day Meetup, Buena Park – Friday, February 14, 2020, 10 p.m. – 2 a.m.
SoCal Gothic Dating will have their first My Dreary Valentine: An Anti-Valentine’s Day Meetup, at The Cauldron Spirits & Brews, a “dark, fairy tale witch-themed sanctuary” cocktail bar. The free meet-up is intended for ages 21 and up, regardless of relationship status. Dress code suggests black and to “leave the red and pinks at home.”
The Cauldron – 8028 Beach Boulevard, Buena Park, California 90620
Bar Sinister & Endless Night L.A. Vampire Ball Pre-party, Saturday, February 15, 2020, at 10 p.m. – 2:30 a.m.
The official Saturday night Pre-party for the Endless Night – Los Angeles Vampire Ball 2020 is at Bar Sinister at Boardner’s. In addition to Bar Sinister’s revolving gothic eye-candy and Sinister Go Go Girls, the Endless Night Pre-party will feature DJ Tommy & special guest DJs Erik Aengel & Matt V Christ spinning their brand of soul-penetrating, hemoglobin-agitating dark danse, performances in the Loft by Master Paul, Feenix, & special guests, and additional performances on the main stage where Endless Night Impresario, Father Sebaastian, will host and hold court.
$10 Admission Gothic-Gaultier-Chic, Alternative/Upscale Black, Fab~Fetish or Futuristic Attire (No Sports Attire or Flip Flops Allowed), Late Admission after 12 a.m. is $15, Out-Of-Dress Code Cover is $20, and there is a $5 off admission pass. Party packages can be reserved which includes a bottle of Champagne & 6 mini-cupcakes $150. The event and club are 21 yrs old & Over Only.
Bar Sinister – 1652 N Cherokee Ave, Los Angeles, California 90028
Endless Night: Los Angeles Vampire Ball 2020, Globe Theatre, Saturday, February 16, 2020, 9 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
The Los Angeles Vampire Ball 2020 vampire costume themed annual event has been described as a “Venetian Masquerade Ball meets a Vampire Court” The theme is Anti-Valentines Day, so “deepest and finest reds” are encouraged and Victorian, Edwardian, Latex, Ancient, Baroque, Medieval, Pagan, Elegant gowns, Tophats, Black Tie, Cloaks, and Capes, are suggested. but not in Superhero cosplay, jeans or T-shirts. Or wear all black.
Tickets are $50 general admission, $115 VIP which includes early entry and swag. Gates open at 9 p.m. for VIPs, 10 p.m. for general admission.
Globe Theatre – 740 S Broadway, Los Angeles, California 90014
Los Angeles Gothic Festival 2020,
Gothic, Post-punk, Industrial, Cybergoth, EBM, Dark 80’s, and more—Klub Terminal’s Los Angeles Gothic Fest 2020 in Downey will feature performances from bands worldwide, along with dark underground, fetish bondage, sub-culture art, tattoo, poetry, clothes design, hairdressing, body art, go-go dancers, and more.
The music line up includes:
Friday, February 14, 2020: God Module, C-lekktor, Absynthe Of Faith, Infected Sound System, and Visions in Black, with Djs Terminal, Revenant, Terror, and Unit 77.
Saturday, February 15, 2020: Angels & Agony, Bella Morte, Circuito Cerrado, and Pyroclastic with Djs Terminal, Revenant, Batty, and Terror.
Sunday, February 16, 2020: Radio Scarlet, The Dirty Horror, Former Humans, And Ravens Moreland, With Djs Terminal, Karlos Siniestro, Revenant, And Terror, With Host: Raven Tremblay (birthday Bash)
Doors open at 8:00 p.m., entry is free before 9:30 p.m., event is 21 and over only, and there is free parking.
Stardust Night Club – 7643 Firestone Blvd., Downey, 90241
Presale tickets for each night are $15
Weekender Love Bender
Street Food Cinema Valentine’s Day Weekend Screening of “Silence of the Lambs” at the Million Dollar, Saturday, February 15, 2020, 7 p.m. door/ 9 p.m. film screening
Street Food Cinema will screen “Silence of the Lambs,” the late Jonathan Demme’s Oscar-winning Best Feature and enduring thriller and love story-of-a-sort between a brilliant psychopathic cannibal, Dr. Hannibal Lector, and a freshman FBI profiling agent, Clarice Starling, shown in one of DTLA’s glorious movie palaces, the Million Dollar.
“Silence of the Lambs” is scheduled at 9 p.m., allowing a respectable time for you to digest your lamb chops and fava beans and sip your chianti. Otherwise, there will be a DJ, specialty cocktails and drinks, beer, and a Valentine’s Photobooth which opens at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $28 and $33 for reserved VIP, however there are a limited amount of Goldstar tickets from $10 – $20 with fees available. Doors open at 7 p.m., DJ is from 7:30 – 9 p.m., and the event is 21 and older only.
The Million Dollar Theatre – 307 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013
The Poetry Brothel LA will present Tongue-Tied Valentine Extravaganza, Sunday, February 16, 2020, 6:30 p.m. – 10 p.m.
In celebration and support of two of the oldest professions—sex work and poetry, The Poetry Brothel promotes empowered sexuality practices and progressive artistic expression, with this event featuring Tarot readings, live typewriter poetry, burlesque dancers, and aerialists. In a bordello-like setting, and for a small fee, poets can also provide private poetry readings in secret, hidden, well-appointed chambers, on beds, chaise lounges and in private rooms, presented by Madam Tallula. Artists performing with the Brothel—”female, male, other, faeries, sea creatures, witches, aliens, straight, queer, creators of all colors, emerging, established, local, international, virgins, whores, and everything in-between”—will participate in the three-hours of Vaudeville variety entertainment, poetry, performances, and atmosphere.
Tickets are $40 – $75. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the show runs from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. Themed costumes and/or vintage formalwear are encouraged but not required, and the event is 21 and older, and is a wheelchair-accessible event. The El Cid tapas kitchen and bar will be open for dinner and drinks and attendees are encouraged to dress in themed costumes and vintage formalwear.
El Cid Cabaret Concert Theater – 4212 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90029
Puppetzilla Anti-Valentines Day Puppet Slam! Saturday, February 16, 2020, at 7 p.m.
The Mayflower Club – Mayflower Club, 11110 Victory Blvd, North Hollywood 91606
FKOA’s Valentine’s 80’s Weekend #9 Hosted by Richard Blade, Saturday,
All 80’s, all day Saturday. This annual 80’s music concert produced by FKOA at the Microsoft Theatre for this year features the Violent Femmes, Wang Chung, A Flock of Seagulls, The Romantics, Big Country, Missing Persons, Heaven 17, Farrington + Mann (Original Members of When in Rome UK,) Dramarama, Josie Cotton, China Crisis, and a special guest performance by MC Hammer.
Tickets are $89, however a limited amount of Richard Blade special tickets are available— $50 for singles, and $100 for doubles, the latter which includes a signed copy of Blade’s book, “SPQR: The Roman Empire has just discovered a terrifying New World.”
Microsoft Theater – 777 Chick Hearn Ct, Los Angeles, California 90015