Hylton Performing Arts Center Announces New Season

Posted: March 28, 2011 at 1:03 am, Last Updated: March 28, 2011 at 5:56 am

By Jill Graziano Laiacona

Jean Kellogg, executive director of the Hylton Performing Arts Center, introduces the new season. Photo by Lori A. Wilson

The Hylton Performing Arts Center, Mason’s newest performing arts venue located at the Prince William Campus, unveiled its 2011-12 season events at a news conference on March 24.

Novant Health also announced the renewal of its Hylton Presents sponsorship for the upcoming season.

“George Mason University is thrilled with yet another university−community partnership — a success that is only made possible by the contributions of each of the partners in this exceptional endeavor,” Mason President Alan Merten said at the news conference.

“Mason is pleased to have partnered with Prince William County, the City of Manassas, the commonwealth of Virginia and other individuals and businesses in our region from the inception of this great idea to the thriving, magnificent facility in which we’ve gathered today,” Merten added.

Resident Arts Partners

The Kings of Salsa will bring a Latin flavor to the Hylton Presents Series. Photo courtesy of Columbia Artists Management

As part of its emphasis on community partnerships, the Hylton Performing Arts Center invited several performing arts ensembles to make the Hylton Center their home, and the groups have seen their audiences double and triple in the past year.

Building on this success, the resident arts partnership will continue next season with the following presentations:

  • The Manassas Ballet Theatre’s productions of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” “The Nutcracker,” “Peter and the Wolf” and “Swan Lake”
  • Prince William Little Theatre’s productions of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” the musical “Baby” and “Red Scare at Sunset”
  • Vpstart Crow’s productions of Agatha Christie’s “The Mousetrap,” Barbara Robinson’s “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” and Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”
  • NOVA Manassas Symphony Orchestra’s concerts, including “A Symphonic Spooktacular,” NMSO’s Annual Family Concert, “Musical Kaleidoscope” and “May-toberfest”
  • Manassas Chorale’s concerts, including “Civil War Voices,” two holiday concerts, Voices United Concert and “Mozart and More”
  • Fall and spring concerts by the Youth Orchestras of Prince William

Hylton Family Series

An addition to the performance lineup next season is the Hylton Family Series, which provides opportunities for families to enjoy and experience the arts together.

The modestly priced offerings include:

  • “Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical,” based on the Caldecott Honor-winning book by six-time Emmy Award winner Mo Willems
  • The Fred Garbo Inflatable Theater Co. interactive program that includes physical comedy, dance, juggling and creative and inflatable inventions
  • Folk legend Peter Yarrow, of Peter, Paul and Mary fame
  • Imago Theatre’s production of “ZooZoo,” combining comedy, illusion, physical finesse and original music

Hylton Presents Series

The National Acrobats of the People's Republic of China will bring their artistic feats of athleticism to the season's lineup. Photo courtesy of Columbia Artists Management

“We have discovered in our first year that audiences are eager to experience a variety of diverse performances — everything from comedy to Celtic, from bluegrass to Broadway, from classical theater to baroque opera,” said Tom Reynolds, the Hylton Center’s director of artistic programming, marketing and audience services.

As a result, Reynolds said the Hylton Presents series will increase its number of events by 50 percent in the upcoming season.

Scheduled presenters from the series are:

  • The Flying Karamazov Brothers
  • The Kings of Salsa
  • Compañia Flamenca José Porcel
  • L.A. Theatre Works
  • National Acrobats of the People’s Republic of China
  • American Festival Pops Orchestra
  • Chanticleer
  • Leahy
  • Sweet Honey in the Rock
  • Vienna Boys Choir
  • Aquila Theatre
  • St. Petersburg State Orchestra
  • Dr. Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys
  • Celtic Nights
  • Jeffrey Siegel with Keyboard Conversations
  • Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra
  • Moscow Festival Ballet
  • Theater of the First Amendment

Second Anniversary Gala

Brian Stokes Mitchell will close the 2011-12 season with a bang at the Hylton Center’s Second Anniversary Gala on Saturday, May 5, 2012.

Stokes has had leading roles on Broadway in “Man of La Mancha,” “Kiss Me, Kate” and “Ragtime,” and appeared on television in “Trapper John, MD,” “Frasier” and “Crossing Jordan.” For the gala, Mitchell will bring his repertoire of timeless show tunes, ballads, jazz standards and classic love songs, such as “Embraceable You,” “They Can’t Take That Away From Me” and “The Impossible Dream.”

The Castleton Festival

Hylton Center Executive Director Jean Kellogg announced that the Hylton Performing Arts Center will partner this summer with the Castleton Festival to present performances on July 7, 14 and 21.

Each performance will feature world-renowned conductor and Castleton Festival founder Lorin Maazel conducting the Castleton Festival Orchestra. The festival, which is held at Maazel’s farm estate in Rappahannock County, Va., fosters the talent of young artists, advanced students and emerging professionals.

Over the three days at the Hylton Center, the young artists of the Castleton Festival will perform a concert version of George Gershwin’s opera, “Porgy and Bess”;“Il Tabarro” and “Gianni Schicchi,” the first and third parts of Giacomo Puccini’s “Il Trittico” (The Triptych); and a concert of American music commemorating the First Battle of Manassas (Bull Run) featuring Washington, D.C., native and mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves, as well as Joshua Weilerstein, the 2009 winner of the Malko Competition for Young Conductors.

Tickets to the Castleton Festival are currently available on hyltoncenter.org.

Subscriptions to Hylton Presents are now available, and single tickets go on sale Sept. 1. Visit hyltoncenter.org for a complete list of events or a season brochure.



Write to mediarel at gazette@gmu.edu