Most significant others, male and female alike, could use a little oomph in their courtship game. And, of course, couples unabashedly become lazier about going out on romantic dates once they consider ‘the game’ to be over. That being said, it can be a pleasant surprise to dream up a multi-destination plan of action for a thoughtful and impressive date with your special someone. When PIFA hits Philadelphia in less than a month, you will have literally hundreds of date opportunities built into a 25-day, 135-event festival. All you need is some focus and vision. Luckily, VERY GLOSSY and I are here to hook you up on that front. Here are a few suggestions:
THURSDAY, APRIL 14
Dating can get expensive, so it’s good to consider what’s worth investing in, per night. Shoot for some cheaper and/or free stuff in the afternoon, then, drop your cash down on a rousing finale. Start an afternoon out right at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, at the Paris Through The Window: Marc Chagall And His Circleexhibit. With the purchase of a ticket to any other PIFA event, this experience will only cost you $12. Go a little overboard with a free event from there; take your date up to the Parkway Central Library (1901 Vine Street). It’s a ten minute bus or bike ride. Get there after 6pm to catch La Belle Époque: Poetry From The Banquet Years, readings of work by Rimbaud, Verlaine, and Apollinaire by local poets and writers. Sweet, right? If you’re looking to make a lasting impression, take your date to the charming, little Bibou (1009 S. 8th Street); it’s the perfect French BYOB (grab either a cheap bottle of red or a fancier bottle of bubbly) that’s oh-so–romantic—but talk about tough to get a reservation. Seriously, try to get a reservation… now. The restaurant is hosting a guest chef from France, Olivier Paget from Le Fleurie Lyon, and it would be the perfect ending to a culturally impressive Thursday.
SUNDAY, APRIL 17
This night is all about one of the crown jewels of the PIFA lineup: Keren Ann‘s performance with ?uestlove at the Kimmel Center. The show is at 8pm and it’s anywhere from $35 to $65 to attend, so plan accordingly. Keren Ann’s beguiling talent is multi-national and multi-faceted (voice/piano/composer/producer), and her collaboration with The Roots‘ rhythm section should be nothing short of a fascinating meeting of minds and worlds. Start this date out with brunch at Crêperie Beau Monde (624 S. 6th Street), where you can easily have a champagne-toast breakfast for about $40. For an afternoon destination, you’ve got three 2pm options in Old City; you could check out a free concert at the Artists’ House Gallery (57 N. 2nd Street), where Curtis Institute students will play french composers Auric, Ibert, and Daniel-Lesur, or you can check out Rite of Passage, presented by the Alchemy Dance Company at the Painted Bride Art Center(230 Vine Street, $10-20 for tickets), inspired by Stravinksy’s Rite of Spring, or you might just want to go all out and get a ticket to the world premiere of the Arden Theatre Company‘s Wanamker’s Pursuit (40 N. 2nd Street, $34-48), a play about a department store heir’s entanglement with Gertrude Stein and Pablo Picasso. So crêpes, live classical music, dance or theater and then an amazing ?uestlove and Keren Ann concert–is that a jam-packed day of awesome, or what?
SATURDAY, APRIL 30
This date is all about flexibility, as it revolves around The Kimmel Center-based Street Fair. From 11am to 8:30pm, Broad Street, from Lombard up to Chestnut, becomes historic Paris, meant to be strolled through at a leisurely pace. Perhaps a coffee here, a live band there–or a trapeze performance, if you’re lucky. And all (basically) for free. So start in the late afternoon, snag a dusk-timed ferris wheel ride so you can gage the vibe, and then determine where you want to take the rest of the night. Wanna go cheap? Snag some fromage et baguette at Fresh Grocer (4001 Walnut Street) before a 7:11pm performance of Le Dada Va Gaga Dans 2011 at the Rotunda (4014 Walnut Street, $10), a site-specific Dadaist collaboration between a choreographer and a filmmaker, along with ten dancers. It’s sure to floor the both of you–the night will be your oyster from there. But, if you feel like taking things down L’Avenue sexy, you might consider a glass of a bubbly brut with some real oysters at Le Bec Fin (1523 Walnut); then, stroll over to the Peek-A-Boo Revue at the World Café (8pm, 3025 Walnut, $24) for some classic striptease burlesque. If that doesn’t get your mate in the mood, you should check a pulse. Because this is one ballin’ Saturday.
Disclaimer: PIFA, the Philadelphia International Festival of Arts, based in the Kimmel Center, is sponsoring the writing of a series of blog posts. Bill Chenevert will be contributing previews and event spotlights leading up to the actual festival, which will take place all over the city of Philadelphia, in numerous venues.
Photo provided courtesy of rusart.ca