Best Bets/Hot Tickets
* It's a story that could be ripped from the headlines. Hugh Whitemore's "Pack of Lies," the next production by Victorian Players, inspires questions about the balance between privacy and personal security of the citizenry and the truthfulness of government officials. Performed at The Little Theatre Off Spring Commons, 702 Mahoning Ave., Youngstown. Showtime, 7:30 p.m. Continues weekends through March 2. Tickets, $12 for adults and $8 for seniors.
* Want to hear more of the King? Blues legend B.B. King, who played at Powers Auditorium last weekend, will meet up with Bobby "Blue" Bland at 8 p.m. April 4 at Benedum Center, Pittsburgh. Tickets will be available after 9 a.m.; call Ticketmaster.
* 34 West Theater Company is bringing back "John, His Story" for dinner theater shows at 7 tonight and Saturday at Das Dutch Village Inn, 150 E. State Route 14, Columbiana. "John, His Story" is a dramatic comedy about the seven miracles by Jesus that John reported in his Gospel. Tickets are $35. Call (330) 482-5050 for details.
* The most-anticipated concert tickets sale of the day will likely be for Pearl Jam, the band that leapt from the Seattle grunge scene to international rock-icon status. Be ready at 10 a.m. to buy tickets for the April 25 show at Gund Arena, Cleveland, or call Ticketmaster after noon for the April 26 performance at Mellon Arena, Pittsburgh. Sleater-Kinney will be opening act at both shows.
* Now's also the time to get tickets for a July 7 concert featuring singer, songwriter and pianist Norah Jones with folk singer Richard Julian at Nautica Pavilion, Cleveland. Tickets, which are priced at $49.50 and $28, will go on sale at 1 p.m. at Ticketmaster outlets.
* Stick around after the World's Toughest Rodeo -- beginning at 7:30 at Gund Arena, Cleveland -- for a free concert by country music singer Darryl Worley. A recording artist with DreamWorks Records, Worley released the CD "Hard Rain Don't Last," which features songs "Feels Like Work" and "Too Many Pockets." The rodeo will continue Sunday afternoon.
* Ample supplies of music and motherly advice will be available at "Vicki Lawrence and Mama: A Two-Woman Show," at 7:30 in the Grande Ballroom at Mountaineer Race Track and Gaming Resort in Chester, W.Va. Lawrence created the character, a k a Thelma Harper, when she was a regular on "The Carol Burnett Show." Call (800) 804-0468 for ticket information.
* Sweet Baby James tours again! Singer-songwriter James Taylor will perform July 25 at Post-Gazette Pavilion near Pittsburgh. Tickets will go on sale at 10 a.m. Monday at Ticketmaster outlets.
* The first U.S. exhibition of the works of Cuban artist Maydelina Perez Lezcano will open with a talk by the artist at 6 p.m. Thursday at YSU's McDonough Museum of Art. A reception will follow for Lezcano and the four artists in the museum's "Overflow" exhibition -- George Fitzpatrick, Erik Neff, Dan Tranberg and Douglas Max Utter.
* Latin jazz is the focus of JazzFest 2003 next month at University of Akron. Flutist Nestor Torres will give a master class at 7 p.m. March 12 in Guzzetta Hall Room 09. Torres and percussionist Michael Spiro will perform with the university's Afro-Cuban and Jazz ensembles at 8 p.m. March 13 in Guzzetta Recital Hall. A master class with trumpeter Arturo Sandoval will be at 3 p.m. March 16 in Guzzetta Recital Hall. Those events are free. Tickets for a concert featuring Sandoval, at 7:30 p.m. March 16 in E.J. Thomas Hall, are $15 to $25. Call (330) 972-7570.
* Get out those world atlases and find Manipur, in northeastern India, which is nearly surrounded by the Himalayan Mountains. Arts and culture have a rich history there, as will be demonstrated by Anjika Manipuri Dance Troupe in its "Music, Dance and Martial Arts of Manipur" show at 7:30 p.m. March 15 in Byham Theater, Pittsburgh. The evening will include martial arts and tribal drum dances. Tickets are $20. Call (412) 456-6666.