Shortlist 

Thursday, February 9

What better way to remind your honey about the importance of fidelity this Valentine's Day than with a trip to see the ultimate story of love gone astray? Madame Butterfly is the tragic tale of a young Japanese geisha and her callous American husband. The Atlanta Ballet performs a two-act dramatic interpretation choreographed by Stanton Welch set to Puccini's famous score. $10-$78. Show times vary, check website for details. Through Feb. 18. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. 404-817-8700. www.atlantaballet.com. (Rebecca Ford)

Friday, February 10

In 2005, not only did MARTY STUART secure a deal with Universal South to handle his own Superlatone label, he put out two of the best albums of his illustrious career. Soul's Chapel was a stellar collection of gospel tunes, and Badlands told the heartbreaking story of the Oglala Sioux tribe. But Stuart can also party with the best of them, and with his flashy outfits and fancy coif, he puts on a memorable show in which great music speaks for itself. $25. 8:30 p.m. Variety Playhouse, 1099 Euclid Ave. 404-524-7354. www.variety-playhouse.com. (James Kelly)

Saturday, February 11

It's an aphrodisiac. It's a seed so precious that it was used as money. It's an addictive snack. And now it's a delectable exhibition at the Fernbank Museum of Natural History. Chocolate: the exhibition follows the path and history of this scrumptious and versatile treat from ancient Mayan traditions to today's supermarket shelf. Visit on special Sundays for complimentary tastings in tandem with the exhibition. $10-$12. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., noon-5 p.m. Through Aug. 13. 767 Clifton Road. 404-929-6400. www.fernbank.edu/museum. (RF)

Every year, art fans engage in the thrilling ritual of bidding on a selection of artworks by emerging and established artists at the Art Papers Art Auction. This year, established artists like Stan Douglas and William Cordova have been thrown into the mix of 400 participating artists. Last year's prices ranged from $30-$3,000. Proceeds go to the artists and the esteemed locally produced bimonthly magazine. $20-$25. 7-10 p.m. Mason Murer Fine Art, 199-B Armor Drive. 404-879-1500. www.masonmurer.com. (FF)

Sunday, February 12

Horizon Theatre's one-woman show, bad Dates, offers a comical view into the life of a single mom who moves back to the big city. Wouldn't you know it, once she becomes a career-minded woman with a worthwhile job, she jumps into the dating scene, which somehow manages to get her onto the wrong side of the law. As with every story of a lady in the city, many fabulous pairs of shoes are involved. $18.36-$32.40. Wed.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 8:30 p.m.; Sun., 5 p.m. Through March 19. 1083 Austin Ave. 404-584-7450. www.horizontheatre.com. (LB)

Monday, February 13

Auburn Avenue's APEX Museum (short for the African-American Panoramic Experience) is dedicated to presenting history from the black perspective, highlighting the often overlooked historic accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans. Its permanent exhibition includes a replica of the Yates & Milton Drug Store, one of the first black-owned businesses in Atlanta, and information on the history of Auburn Avenue. $3-$4. Tues.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun., 1-5 p.m. 135 Auburn Ave. 404-523-2739. www.apexmuseum.org. (LB)

Tuesday, February 14

If you are looking for an über-romantic evening, head to the candlelit Valentine's Orchid Nights at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. The world's most erotic flower is accompanied by champagne and chocolate-tinis at a cash bar, with live music from Rio Negro. $20. Also Sat., Feb. 11. 6-10 p.m. Atlanta Botanical Garden, 1345 Piedmont Ave. 404-876-5859. www.atlantabotanicalgarden.org. (RF)

Wednesday, February 15

Currently on view at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, The Paper Sculpture Show is one part origami and two parts interactive exhibition. Artists and artist-teams from around the globe have sent designs for a three-dimensional paper sculpture to the gallery. But visitors can't see the finished work of art until they roll up their sleeves and build it themselves. Detailed instructions, scissors, tape and glue are provided. See Arts, p. 44. $3-$5. Tues.-Sat., 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Through March 25. 535 Means St. 404-688-1970. www.thecontemporary.org. (LB)

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