February events in San Francisco are emotional and hormonal, bring hopes of renewal and swing from indoors to outdoors. They include a slew of film series, concerts and shows indoors, with the occasional street fair to test the weather. A new lunar-calendar year—the Year of the Tiger—begins. Love is hyped, and people are reduced to two categories: single and attached. (For love-themed events, check Valentine’s Weekend Events in San Francisco).FEBRUARY EVENTS
Jacques Tati: Genius of French Comedy
Feb. 4 & 11
New 35mm prints of the films of French comic Jacques Tati, who retooled slapstick and satirized snobs and humans’ efforts to thrive in a mechanical society. Where his character Monsieur Hulot goes, disaster follows.
At Yerba Buena Center. Tickets $6 & 8.
Mostly British Film Festival
Your chance to see films from the British Commonwealth that have been largely overlooked by U.S. distributors, such as London River, with Brenda Blethyn as a mom searching for her missing daughter, Shadows in the Sun, Jean Simmons’ last movie, Disgrace, based on South African Nobel laureate J.M. Coetzee's novel and starring John Malkovich, and Candy, which Heath Ledger starred in after finishing Brokeback Mountain.
At the Vogue Theatre, 3290 Sacramento St., San Francisco, and Smith Rafael Film Center, 118 Fourth St., San Rafael. Ticket prices vary. See festival schedule for details.
12th SF Independent Film Festival
Dozens of indie films from around the globe, highlighting such subjects as multi-generational coal mining families, the creators of Superman, dysfunctional families and underground rockers in Tehran. Opening night’s Wah Do Dem, the LA Film Fest’s top jury prize winner, stars Norah Jones. Plus a Roller Disco Party on Feb. 6 and the annual Big Lebowski Party Feb. 12.
At Roxie Cinema, 3117 16th St., SF. Ticket prices vary.
San Francisco Arts of Pacific Asia Show
Feb. 5-7; Opening night preview Feb. 4, at 7-9 pm
About 85 vetted private galleries from around the globe display museum-quality antiques and contemporary art from Asia at this annual fair, perhaps the foremost show of Asian art in North America. Aficionados, collectors, curators, investors and dealers circulate, scrutinize and shop. The Opening Night Preview draws dignitaries and socialites and benefits the Asian Art Museum.
At Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center. Show tickets $15; preview night tickets $85-115.
Feb. 6, at 8 pm
Reminisce with the multiple Grammy winner and Billboard chart topper famed for "Walk on By," "I'll Never Fall in Love Again” and "Do You Know the Way to San Jose" (some of us still don’t).
At the Castro Theatre. Tickets $27.50 – 79.50.
Chinese New Year Festival
Feb. 6 – 28
Celebrate the Year of the Tiger with activities throughout the month: a flower fair where you can buy tangerine trees and other auspicious plants and fruits; a basketball tournament; the Miss Chinatown USA pageant; a 10K run; and a community street fair in Chinatown. The highlight is the Chinese New Year Parade on Feb. 27.
At various venues in SF. Most events are free.
Vietnamese Tet Festival
Feb. 7, at 11 am-6 pm
Vietnamese pop singers, traditional dances and songs, games, and more than 60 booths offering food, arts and crafts, and community information enliven the Little Saigon area of the Tenderloin, in honor of Vietnamese New Year. Expect lots of color, photo opps and appearances by city officials at this 14th annual festival.
On Larkin Street, between Eddy and O'Farrell. Free.
San Francisco Bluegrass & Old-Time Festival
More than 85 bands from British Columbia, Virginia, Alabama, the Bay Area and elsewhere perform in this romp of shows, jam sessions, square dances and workshops. The 11th annual festival's line-up includes Red Molly, the Henriettas, Nashville Bluegrass Band, Whiskey Brothers and Loudon Wainwright III.
At various venues in SF and Northern California. Ticket prices vary. See festival schedule for details.
Feb. 12 – Sept. 5
Shanghai has been called the “Paris of the East” and the “Whore of the Orient” and is China’s most dynamic metropolis and San Francisco’s sister city. Get acquainted with its intriguing history, extroverted personality, unique culture and progressive art in this blockbuster exhibit at the Asian Art Museum. The show includes paintings, Art Deco rugs, movie clips, clothing, revolutionary propaganda posters and video art. The offshoot Shanghai Celebration is an extensive program of concerts, films, performances, seminars and other special events throughout 2010.
At the Asian Art Museum, 200 Larkin St. Tickets $5 plus regular museum admission.
Relations between African-American and Jews: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to Barack Obama
Feb. 16, at 8 pm
Rabbi Marc Schneier, one of the most respected rabbis in the U.S. and president of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, and human rights leader Martin Luther King III talk frankly about Jewish-African American relations in the U.S.
At the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, 3200 California St. Tickets $10-18.
Noise Pop Festival
Feb. 18 – Mar. 1
A tribute to indie music, this festival features performers such as the Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band (which includes her son Sean Lennon), a slew of music-inspired films, a rock-music photography exhibit and music happy hours and soirees.
At various venues in SF. Ticket prices vary. See Noise Pop schedule for details.
A Great Night in the Fillmore
Feb. 21, at 7 pm
A night of great jazz—by Bobby Hutcherson, Tuck & Patti, Denny Zeitlin, the Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet, John Handy and the Cultural Heritage Choir with Linda Tillery—to benefit the California Jazz Foundation. Actress and dancer Rita Moreno hosts.
At Yoshi’s San Francisco, 1330 Fillmore (at Eddy). Tickets $45-50.
58th Annual Pacific Orchid Exposition
On view and for sale: 150,000 orchids of every color, pattern and shape imaginable (and probably many unimaginable, too). A gala benefit party Friday night kicks off the flower-power weekend.
At Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason. Ticket prices vary.