ATLRetro Weekend Update, Feb. 10-13, 2011

Vampires, Vietnamese food & rockabilly, va-va-voom and vintage soul at the Star Bar, Valentine’s weekend promises plenty to do for lovers and anti-lovers…

Thursday Feb. 10

The Atlanta Ballet put the vampire into Valentine’s a few years ago with its seductive performance of DRACULA. Now it’s the Little 5 Points Rockstar Orchestra’s turn to go blood red with HAUS VON DRACUL, PART 1, an original rock opera by veterans of Atlanta’s underground music scene, opening tonight at 7 Stages Theatre in Little 5 Points and playing through Sun. Feb. 13. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out ATLRetro’s preview with Chris Love, aka Jonathan Harker here.

Also, Ghost Riders Car Club celebrates Vietnamese New Year with classic ’50s honkytonk and rockabilly every Thursday in February at Pho Truc in Clarkston. For a taste, see last week’s KOOL KAT OF THE WEEK with guitarist Spike Fullerton. Or listen to Tongo Hiti’s luxurious live lounge sounds, as well as some trippy takes on iconic pop songs, just about every Thursday night at Trader Vic’s.

Friday Feb. 11

Valentines gets a dose of the old va-va-va-voom as two of Atlanta’s best burlesque groups take the stage this weekend. You’re sure to be bedazzled, and laugh a little, too, when the delectable Dames Aflame “POP” the corks off their annual Valentine’s extravaganza at Paris on Ponce both Friday and Saturday nights at 8 PM and 10:30 PM. VIP tables for four get a complimentary bottle of bubbly. Meanwhile Minette Magnifique escorts audiences on a metaphorical visit to the most romantic city in the world with FROM PARIS WITH LOVE, their Valentine’s spectacular at Le Fais do-do in West Midtown. Tune in Tuesday to meet their delightful emcee Shellie Schmals, aka Baroness VonSchmalhausen, ATLRetro’s Kool Kat of the Week.

Everyone is a Latin lover at a special VALENTINE TANGO NIGHT in the vintage setting of Callanwolde, a Tudor-style mansion in Druid Hills. Dancers of all skill levels are invited to learn the authentic Argentine version of the dance, beginning with an introductory lesson at 8 pm followed by a chance to try out your moves at an open tango dance party starting at 9:15. Lesson is $15, or just attend the party for $10.  Or if you’re in the mood for swing, Fernbank’s MARTINIS & IMAX VALENTINE’S CELEBRATION features the Michael Brown Quartet and cupid-approved drinks such as the Blushing Valentini, from 6:30-11 p.m. And theAtlanta Symphony Orchestra proclaims ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE, with a tribute to the silly and serious love songs of Paul McCartney and The Beatles, both tonight and Saturday at 8 p.m. Mr. McCartney is personified by Tony Kishman, one of the stars of the hit Broadway play BEATLEMANIA.

Saturday Feb. 12

In life there may be no second chances, but the Dames Aflame “POP” show and ASO ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE McCartney/Beatles tribute replay tonight, or for the more macabre-minded, HAUS VON DRACUL, it’s day three of four for the horror rock musical.

Been there, done that? Then get your soul on at Star Bar courtesy of The Dynamites featuring legendary Charles Walker who got his start opening up for James Brown and Wilson Pickett at the Apollo Theater. Noot d’Noot opens. Or head to Avondale Estates for the fourth annual Rail Arts District event, featuring art, gourmet food truck vendors, live acoustic music at Little Tree Art Studios including Kodac Harrison, and a chance to relive the British Invasion at 10 PM with The Buggs. Lovers of oysters can get their fill at Oysterfest at Park Tavern on Piedmont Park from noon to midnight, also featuring Abbey Road, a Beatles tribute band at 4 pm, and Block Party, an ’80s cover act, at 6 p.m.

Sunday Feb. 13

Heart Humbugs will rejoice at SPEAKEASY SUNDAY: THE ANTI-VALENTINE EDITION, 9 to 11: 30 p.m., at Friends on Ponce, which promises songs of heartbreak, love, and loss and special guests such as Burlesque beauty Talloolah Love.

Look for a bonus Valentine’s Day round-up in the next few days, then tune back in Monday for next week’s top picks of things to do in Retro Atlanta. If you know of a cool happening we’ve missed, send suggestions to

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