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The Princess of Pop

Actually, to merely call Kelly Clarkson a “pop star” is a serious understatement. Her wide range of musical influences — from Aretha Franklin and Reba McEntire to Aerosmith and Metallica — give her hit songs like “Stronger,” “My Life Would Suck Without You” and “Since U Been Gone” broad crossover appeal, and resulted in sales of 25 million albums and 45 million singles worldwide. Her most recent album, the soul- and pop-infused Meaning of Life, has been praised as her best yet. Expect to hear why when she makes a two-night stop at Mohegan Sun March 14 and 15, where she will be joined by Brynn Cartelli (last February’s winner on The Voice) and Maggie Rose. Both shows are at 7 p.m.; tickets are $39-$99. mohegansun.com

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Sweet Relief

On March 24 from 1-4 p.m., the Inn at Middletown is hosting the 17th annual Chocolate to the Rescue fundraiser to benefit the Middlesex Family Shelter. Attendees can sample delicious desserts and delicacies from local chocolatiers, bakeries and restaurants, plus bid in a silent auction and vote for their favorite chocolate creation. Best of all, proceeds go toward the shelter’s mission to assist homeless families. Admission is $35. columbushouse.org/chocolate

Home Court

The road to the Final Four passes through Hartford on Thursday, March 21, and Saturday, March 23, when the XL Center and the University of Connecticut host the first and second rounds of the NCAA Division I men’s basketball tournament. Check back on Selection Sunday, March 17, when teams and game times will be announced; all-session tickets are $240-$300. xlcenter.com

Kickin’ Grass

What do you get when you cross bluegrass with hip-hop? It sounds like a setup waiting for a punchline, but Gangstagrass is no joke: They combine the two musical forms — seemingly disparate, yet both born of blues, jazz and gospel influences — into something that sounds both wholly original and completely natural. Hear them live at the Fairfield Theater Company’s StageOne on March 8 at 7:45 p.m. Tickets are $22. fairfieldtheatre.org

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House with a ’View

Dick Cavett will be right at home when he takes the stage at the Ridgefield Playhouse on March 23. The former talk show host and Ridgefield resident will kick off a new series of live conversations with entertainment luminaries: Dick Cavett Presents … an Interview With Blythe Danner. The Tony and Emmy Award-winning actress will discuss her five-decade career, which ranges from her breakout performance in Butterflies are Free on Broadway, to supporting roles on Will & Grace and Showtime’s Huff, to her role in the movie Meet the Parents and its sequels. The show starts at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $40-$90. ridgefieldplayhouse.org

Irish Gigs

St. Patrick’s Day is March 17, but there are opportunities to hear traditional — or not-so-traditional — Irish music throughout the state all month.

March 2: Best-selling Irish folk musicians The High Kings, currently on tour celebrating a decade as one of the top groups in their genre, will perform at the Garde Arts Center in New London. The presentation is a first-time collaboration between the Garde and the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center. (8 p.m., $29-$59; gardearts.org)

March 3, 9 & 10: CitySingers of Hartford presents Celtic Fire! The Eternal Flame, a celebration of Celtic folk melodies, compositions by Irish composers and more. Performances take place March 3 at Wapping Community Church in South Windsor ($15 or $40 per family), as well as March 9 at St. John’s Episcopal Church in West Hartford, and March 10 at Bethany Covenant Church in Berlin (voluntary donations accepted at both). All shows are at 4 p.m.; citysingers.org

March 8: The Wood Memorial Library in South Windsor has Irish Night with the Kerry Boys, with the longtime balladeers performing traditional and original music. This show is adults only and BYOB. 7 p.m., $20 (pre-registration required); woodmemoriallibrary.org

March 14: The Claddagh Dancers bring their annual Irish dancing showcase to the Edgerton Center for the Performing Arts at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield. 8 p.m., $15 or free for SHU students; sacredheart.edu

March 15: Infinity Hall in Hartford has legendary singers the Dublin City Ramblers. 8 p.m., $29-$49

March 15: Ireland's popular trio The Celtic Tenors perform everything from classical arias to contemporary songs at the Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville. 8 p.m., free

March 17: Infinity Hall’s Norfolk location hosts Dicey Riley with Zoe Darrow and their “alt-Irish” (a combination of Celtic-influenced alternative rock and alt-country) sound. 7:30 p.m., $19-$39; infinityhall.com

March 23: The traditional Irish music trio Socks in the Frying Pan plays at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center in Old Saybrook. 8 p.m., $35; thekate.org


Major St. Patrick’s Day Parades

Here are the dates and starting times for some of the major St. Patrick's parades around the state this year:

March 2, noon: Stamford

March 3, 1 p.m.: Norwich

March 9, 10:30 a.m.: Essex Go Bragh Parade

March 9, 11 a.m.: Hartford

March 9, 11 a.m.: Norwalk

March 9, 1 p.m.: Milford

March 10, 1:30 p.m.: New Haven

March 15, noon: Bridgeport

March 17, 1 p.m.: New London

March 24, 1 p.m.: Mystic Irish Parade

March 24, 2 p.m.: Greenwich

March 24, 2 p.m.: Meriden

For more events around the state, check out our online calendar.

This article appeared in the March 2019 issue of Connecticut Magazine. You can subscribe here, or find the current issue on sale here. Got a question or comment? Email editor@connecticutmag.com, or contact us on Facebook @connecticutmagazine or Twitter @connecticutmag.