Forecast: March 2010: The Cultural To-Do List: Jay-Z: Celtic Woman: Stephen Petronio Company: Tim O’Brien: Maya Angelou: Pax East Video-Game Convention: Lily Tomlin

Seven events worth your time this month

| Boston Magazine |

3/11 Jay-Z
Jay-Z plays the Garden just 11 days before Alicia Keys visits Agganis Arena, and you can bet both will offer a version of their ode to NYC, "Empire State of Mind." Which is understandable, even in Boston, but Jigga may want to reconsider rocking his trademark Yankees cap so close to opening day.

3/12–3/14 Celtic Woman

This popular five-member act saw its latest album debut at number 9 on the Billboard charts and played the White House last December. Their three-night run at the Wang showcases traditional songs that lean heavily on the harp and violin—perfect if your ideal St. Patrick’s Day is more Riverdance and soda bread than Dropkick Murphys and Jameson.

3/19 Stephen Petronio Company

Making its Boston debut onstage at the ICA tonight, choreographer Petronio’s I Drink the Air Before Me cops its title from Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Written in celebration of his company’s 25th anniversary last year, the piece fittingly re-creates the rush of a storm, dancers whipping across the stage with Petronio’s trademark speed.

3/25 Tim O’Brien
To honor the 20th anniversary of the stirring Vietnam War novel The Things They Carried, the Harvard Book Store welcomes its author to the First Parish Church Meetinghouse in Cambridge for an evening of reading and discussion. Expect a friendly welcome for the longtime Cantabrigian, who now makes his home in Texas.

3/26 Maya Angelou
The multidimensional Angelou has dazzled as author, poet, historian, and playwright. Tonight she visits Northeastern, where you can enjoy a sampling of her various skills. (Well, with the exception of her conducting chops, which were displayed only once, 10 years ago, when Boston Pops conductor Keith Lockhart stepped aside and let her take the baton.)

3/26–3/28 PAX East Video-Game Convention
This three-day gaming expo at the Hynes Convention Center has everything a button-masher could want: nerdcore concerts, gaming tournaments, and test drives of unreleased games. Hub startups will also get a chance to shine as the Boston Indie Showcase offers local game designers the chance to impress the masses.

3/27 Lily Tomlin
Don’t let Tomlin’s subdued appearance this season on the FX drama Damages fool you—she’s still a comedian at heart. Tonight’s Wilbur performance should feature updated versions of some of her classic characters, including Ernestine the operator, made famous during Tomlin’s Laugh-In days.

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