Today’s recap includes concert announcements, festival updates and more as compiled by TicketNews on February 18, 2009.

Acclaimed singer and actress Jennifer Hudson has inked plans for her first official tour of the nation. The former American Idol contestant will co-head a six-week run with fellow R&B singer Robin Thicke. The tour announcement follows Hudson’s recent wins at the Grammys and NAACP Image Awards.

The new Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Texas will open with a concert starring George Strait, among other country music stars. … Reggae group UB40 will launch a U.S. trek this spring with nearly 20 cities on the itinerary. … Best known for his hit “Kiss from a Rose,” soul singer Seal will mount his latest North American tour to support his 2008 studio album “Soul.” … Promoter Goldenvoice/AEG has launched a festival division with Stuart Ross heading up production and operations.

Those are the full reports for this Wednesday. Read on for more of the day’s latest concert and tour updates in brief:

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Chris Botti has a full itinerary for 2009, with 44 concerts already booked through December. His current schedule outlines a circuit that launches April 4 at Tropicana Casino & resort in Atlantic City, NJ, and closes out with a December 13 performance at Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts in Pittsburgh, PA. Highlights for the itinerary include an April 26 show at the Fillmore at Jackie Gleason Theater in Miami Beach, FL, a May 10 concert at Chicago Theatre in Chicago, IL, a June 4 gig at Beacon Theatre in New York, NY, a July 11-12 run at Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, CA, an October 29-31 stand at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, and a pair of shows December 4-5 at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, MN.

Jack’s Mannequin has added five more concerts to its upcoming spring run of the U.S. The outing is now set at 11 dates, beginning April 7 at Warfield Theatre in San Francisco, CA, and concluding May 12 at The Blue Note in Columbia, MO. Recent additions to the itinerary are: April 11 at Sokol Auditorium/Underground in Omaha, NE; April 25 at the University of Scranton in Scranton, PA; April 26 at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY; May 6 at the House of Blues in North Myrtle Beach, SC; and May 7 at the House of Blues in Lake Buena Vista, FL.

Avenged Sevenfold has an extensive solo itinerary set through spring, peppered with co-head performances with Buckcherry. Five new solo shows have recently been added to the band’s circuit: March 24 at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Auditorium in Chattanooga, TN; March 31 at Minglewood Hall in Memphis, TN; April 6 at Brady Theater in Tulsa, OK; April 16 at Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, CA; and April 17 at San Diego Sports Arena in San Diego, CA. The band’s next show is February 19 at Murat Egyptian Room in Indianapolis, IN.

Buckcherry currently has solo shows and co-head gigs with Avenged Sevenfold booked from February 20 at the Wolstein Center in Cleveland, OH, through April 13 at Tim’s Toyota Center in Prescott Valley, AZ. But the rockers recently added four early May gigs in Canada to their itinerary. Dates north of the border are: May 2 at UBC Thunderbird Arena in Vancouver, BC; May 3 at CN Centre in Prince George, BC; May 5 at Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, AB; and May 7 at Stampede Corral in Calgary, AB.

Blue Oyster Cult has increased its current tour itinerary by 11 shows, with 36 total gigs now scheduled through late summer. The next show is March 7 at The Great Saltair in Magna, UT, and the itinerary currently closes with an October 10 performance at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT. Other recent additions include a June 5 set at the Chameleon in Lancaster, PA, a June 19 gig at the Zeiterion Theatre in New Bedford, MA, a July 10-11 run at the new Entertainment & Sports Centre in Abbotsford, BC, and an August 14 concert at the House of Blues in Cleveland, OH.

Doves have an extensive jaunt across the British-Irish Isles set for this spring. The 24-date outing kicks off March 12 at Parr Hall in Warrington, ENG, and wraps May 7 at the O2 Academy in Bristol, ENG. The band will stop for shows on March 19 at The Forum in London, ENG; April 20 at Olympia Theatre in Dublin, IRE; April 23 at Picture House in Edinburgh, SCO; and May 1 at the O2 Academy Brixton in London, ENG, among other dates. A single U.S. festival appearance is on the books for May 23 at the Sasquatch Music Festival at the Gorge Amphitheatre in Quincy, WA.

Blake Shelton has filled in his 2009 schedule with festival appearances and a supporting stint with George Strait. Now the country up-and-comer has added 18 various gigs to the books, bringing the total of future shows to a full 53. The next concert is February 20 at Wild Bill’s in Duluth, GA. Other select shows are: April 11 at Harrah’s in Cherokee, NC; June 6 with George Strait at the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Dallas, TX; July 18 at the Lincoln County Fair in Troy, MO; September 5 at the California State Fair in Sacramento, CA; and September 24 at the Qwest Center in Omaha, NE.