Rallying musician Lauryn Hill will spend more time touring in early 2011 than originally expected. The long-dormant hip-hop and R&B star will hit the North American circuit hard in the New Year with nearly 20 concerts slated for the coming weeks.

The singer and songwriter has already completed three mid-December shows, and the next is set for December 27 at Highline Ballroom in New York, NY. Hill’s calendar keeps her in the Big Apple for six total shows as she venue-hops across town, concluding her NYC run with a January 3-5 stand at the Blue Note.

Other U.S. stops in the mix include January 14 at Center Stage in Atlanta, GA, and January 20 at the House of Blues in Chicago, IL. Meanwhile, Canadian audiences can catch Hill on January 22 at Sound Academy in Toronto, ON, and January 23 at Metropolis in Montreal, QC.

At present, Hill’s last regular concert performance of the tour comes February 4 at Wellmont Theatre in Montclair, NJ. But Hill won’t disappear from the stage completely after February; she’s also the March 19 headliner for the Jazz in the Gardens music festival in Miami Gardens, FL.

TFL and ATBS for ticketing professionals

Tickets to some of the previously announced concert dates already went on sale — and sold out quickly in some cases. Several newer dates have had ticket sales opening to the public throughout yesterday, December 22, and today, December 23. Based on current Ticketmaster.com listings, most ticket prices appear to be in the ballpark of $50 or $60 before fees.

A press statement announcing the winter tour noted that Hill will be performing past hits of her career — both solo and with The Fugees — backed by a live band. However, Hill’s statement includes the caveat that she “may never play venues of this size again.”

Whether that means Hill’s next outings will be an upgrade from the current small- to mid-sized concert halls she’s gracing, or that she plans to once again bow out of the limelight indefinitely, is unclear.

Hill hasn’t released a studio record since her 1998 debut “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill,” save a later live recording for the MTV Unplugged series, but her most recent published interviews have teased new music in the future. And while the singer has gained a reputation for being both increasingly scattered and volatile in her live performances, the mostly positive critical response to Hill’s most recent sold-out shows could signal a star plotting a return to her former glory.

Lauryn Hill itinerary:
(Dates are subject to change.)

December 27 New York, NY HighLine Ballroom
December 28 Brooklyn, NY Music Hall of Williamsburg
January 1 New York, NY Bowery Ballroom
January 3 – 5 New York, NY Blue Note
January 8 Charlotte, NC Amos’ SouthEnd
January 9 Asheville, NC The Orange Peel
January 12 Charleston, SC Music Farm
January 14 Atlanta, GA Center Stage
January 16 St. Louis, MO The Pageant
January 18 Minneapolis, MN First Avenue
January 20 Chicago, IL House of Blues
January 22 Toronto, ON Sound Academy
January 23 Montreal, QC Metropolis
January 29 Atlantic City, NJ House of Blues
February 4 Montclair, NJ Wellmont Theatre
March 19 Miami Gardens, FL Jazz in the Gardens