In the Moment: Hylton Performing Arts Center Announces Their 2016-2017 Schedule

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Dance, Music, & Theater Comes to Manassas, VA

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The Hylton Performing Arts Center announces its 2016-2017 season, a fantastic line-up of music, dance, theater and performing arts. Now entering its seventh season, this award-winning community arts center in Manassas provides a permanent performance home for local and regional ensembles and world-class performance stages where people from around the region gather to enjoy and experience nationally and internationally renowned performing artists.

The 2016-2017 season features the best in professional performing arts in the Hylton Presents series; entertaining programs designed for families with the Hylton Family Series; the intimate afternoon concert series, Matinee Idylls; and a sampling of the best in local performing arts by the Resident Arts Partners.

“The Hylton Center’s sixth season has been a resounding success across every aspect of our mission – sold-out shows for Hylton Presents, Hylton Center Extra!, Matinee Idylls, Resident Arts Partners and Affiliates, wonderful collaborations with schools from Manassas and Prince William County, stellar performances by ensembles from George Mason University, the continued success of our PBS special featuring Dailey & Vincent – in all these ways and more, the Hylton Center is proving itself as an indispensable community asset.

Rick Davis, Executive Director of Hylton Performing Arts Center, CVPA
Rick Davis, Executive Director of Hylton Performing Arts Center.

The vision of the founding partnership among Prince William County, George Mason University, the City of Manassas and the Commonwealth of Virginia is paying off in visible community transformation,” says Rick Davis, the Hylton Center’s Executive Director and Dean of Mason’s College of Visual and Performing Arts.

“Well over 100,000 people annually—a number that grows each year – take advantage of the Center’s amazing capabilities, whether as an audience member for a great concert, a performer in a play, a guest at an art gallery reception, a business person or civic leader at a meeting, or a happy bride and groom. We are thrilled to be able to play all of these multiple roles – and more – as we seek to make our vision of being this region’s ‘creative commons’ an ever-more-vibrant reality, and increase the quality of life for all.”

The Hylton Performing Arts Center’s Hylton Presents season brings many of the best professional music, theater, and dance events to Manassas, VA. The 2016-2017 season features witty political satire from The Capitol Steps and the Reduced Shakespeare Company; global arts with Shanghai Acrobats of the People’s Republic of China and the Grammy Award-winning Mariachi Los Camperos; joyous holiday performances from acclaimed musicians from Windham Hill and country stars Restless Heart; jaw-dropping illusions from The Jason Bishop Show and much more.

Capitol Steps. Photo courtesy of Mike Reyna.
The Capitol Steps. Photo courtesy of Mike Reyna.

Kicking off the 2016-2017 Hylton Presents season is The Capitol Steps and their timely Mock the Vote on Sunday, September 18, 2016, at 7 p.m.  Founded by Hill staffers in 1981, The Capitol Steps’ blend of humor and musical comedy leaves both sides of the aisle rolling in laughter, and their new program is here just in time to poke fun at the 2016 elections.

From the Rumba to the Cha-Cha-Cha to the Habanera, The Havana Cuba All-Stars brings amazing global music to the Hylton Center on Friday, October 14, 2016, at 8 p.m. In The Asere Friendship Tour, their debut U.S. tour, these fantastic musicians celebrate the new era of open friendship between the United States and Cuba.

Just weeks before Americans head to the polls to elect the 45th president, Reduced Shakespeare Company turns their wit to U.S. politics with “The Complete History of America (abridged): Election Edition!” on Friday, October 28, 2016, at 8 p.m. This 90-minute romp through 600 years of history irreverently portrays American giants from Lincoln to Lewis and Clark, tackles the controversies of history and manifests U.S. destiny into a rapid and ridiculous retelling of the county from sea to shining sea.

With jaw-dropping feats of acrobatics and contortionists, the Shanghai Acrobats of the People’s Republic of China live up to their international acclaim and awards.  On Saturday, November 12, 2016, at 8 p.m., Shanghai Nights explores the rich culture of contemporary Shanghai through amazing circus acts.

On Sunday, November 27, 2016, at 7 p.m., three leading musicians from the iconic recording label Windham Hill bring the tranquility of the approaching winter season in A Winter Solstice Concert. Pianist Liz Story, singer-songwriter Barbara Higbie and guitarist Sean Harkness represent the folk, acoustic and classical style of this premiere label.

D.C.’s own Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra, under the direction of Jim Carroll, returns on Friday, December 2, 2016, at 8 p.m. Together with the powerhouse vocal quartet New York Voices, the group brings their signature swinging sound to big band arrangements of holiday classics.

Holiday Pops: Songs of the Season, a seasonal family favorite, returns on Friday, December 9, 2016 at 8 p.m. The American Festival Pops Orchestra, under the baton of founder and Artistic Director Anthony Maiello, celebrates the holiday with seasonal songs, holiday carols and a Christmas sing-alon­g.

Rounding out the popular Hylton Presents holiday programs, the iconic country band Restless Heart puts their unique spin on Christmas classics such as “Tennessee Christmas,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” and “O Holy Night.” Thirty years and still going strong, this chart-topping band continues to delight audiences with numerous country hits, including “I’ll Still Be Loving You,” “Fast Movin’ Train,” and “When She Cries.”  The band turns their pop-infused country twang to holiday favorites with “A Restless Heart Christmas” on Sunday, December 11, 2016, at 7 p.m.

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Fresh off their popular production of “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” during the 2015-2016 season, Aquila Theatre returns with another tale of mystery and suspense. Agatha Christie’s popular whodunit Murder on the Nile supplies the suspense and intrigue that only live theater can provide on Saturday, January 21, 2017, at 8 p.m.

With music fused with Irish wit and operatic bravado, The Five Irish Tenors present a classical concert experience on Sunday, January 29, 2017, at 4 p.m. Salute to Ireland is a performance of vocal classics, as well as beloved Irish songs, including W.B. Yeats’s “Down by the Sally Gardens,” Verdi’s “O Mio Rimorso” from La Traviata, Cesar Franck’s “Panis Angelicus,” and the glorious “Danny Boy.”

For its second performance of the season, the American Festival Pops Orchestra explores the romance of the Great American Songbook in Valentine Pops. On Sunday, February 12, 2017, at 3 p.m., this performance of the last century’s most beloved melodies and movie love themes is a wonderful celebration of the holiday.

The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine.
The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine.

The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine is one of Eastern Europe’s most esteemed orchestras, earning international acclaim for its virtuosity and precision. On Saturday, February 25, 2017, at 8 p.m. this celebrated orchestra performs three pieces of classical music – Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 “From the New World,” Stankovych’s Suite from the ballet The Night Before Christmas, and R. Schumann’s Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54.

Continuing the tradition of fantastic classical ballet at the Hylton Center, the Russian National Ballet Theatre presents Giselle on Friday, March 17, 2017, at 8 p.m. Fifty graceful dancers from this world-renowned ensemble perform a ballet of heartbreak and passion conveyed through the unrivaled choreography of Marius Petipa.

One of the most acclaimed acts of its kind, The Jason Bishop Show brings unique acts of illusion and magic on Saturday, March 25, 2017, at 8 p.m. Jason Bishop is a master of all types of magic, from intimate card tricks and sleight of hand to larger-than-life levitation and disappearing acts.

On Saturday, April 22, 2017, at 8 p.m. Jeffrey Siegel returns with a signature “concert with commentary.” In Keyboard Conversations® with Jeffrey Siegel, the virtuoso pianist gives illuminating insights into the lives of the world’s greatest composers. In A Few of Your Favorite Things, Siegel performs favorite piano works requested from audiences at the Hylton Center.

New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players “H.M.S. Pinafore.” Photo courtesy of the artist.
New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players ‘H.M.S. Pinafore.’ Photo courtesy of the artist.

The New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players presents hijinks on the high seas with the comedic light opera H.M.S. Pinafore on Thursday, May 4, 2017, at 8 p.m. Gilbert & Sullivan’s famous comic operetta has delighted audiences on both sides of the Atlantic for more than 130 years with its satirical take on rigid Victorian class distinctions.

Just in time for Cinco de Mayo, the acclaimed Mariachi Los Camperos showcase the best of authentic mariachi music on Saturday, May 6, 2017, at 8 p.m. The Grammy Award-winning ensemble is known for bringing this joyful folk art style into the concert halls.

Hylton Family Series

An inspiring series with children in mind, the Hylton Family Series is a season of entertaining and educational performing arts experiences for families. From life-like dinosaurs to tumbling live cats, from math solving TV stars to a playful exploration of classical piano, the 2016-2017 Hylton Family Series is sure to delight children, parents and grandparents. The perfect introduction to the performing arts, these performances are accessible and affordable – tickets remain just $15 for adults and $5 for children.

hfs_01_oddsquad_1The Hylton Family Series begins with the Odd Squad Live! on Saturday, October 15, 2016, at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.  The characters from the popular PBS Kids series comes to the stage to use math and logic to figure out what, or who, is behind the strange happenings wreaking havoc around town, but they need the audience’s help in calculating the solution to their dilemmas.

A popular performer from the Hylton Presents series, Jeffrey Siegel adapts his Keyboard Conversations® format to create a program for audiences members age 6 to 106. On Sunday, March 5, 2017, at 2 p.m., Music for the Young and the Young at Heart is an introduction to classical piano with favorites such as “Flight of the Bumblebee,” Bartók’s “Diary of a Fly,” Copland’s “Cat and Mouse” and Gershwin’s “Walking the Dog,” and “I Got Rhythm.”

Remarkably trained cats, dogs, geese, parrots and even a Shetland pony, come to the Hylton Center with the acclaimed Popovich Comedy Pet Theater on Saturday, April 8, 2017, at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.  The award-winning Moscow Circus veteran Gregory Popovich leads clowns, acrobats, jugglers and a menagerie of adorable animals in this entertaining performance.

Saving the largest creatures for last, Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live is a one-of-a-kind theatrical experience where life-like dinosaurs invade the Hylton Center in a thrilling look at the prehistoric period. On Sunday, May 14, 2017, at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m., expert puppeteers and knowledgeable paleontologists team up to create an eye-popping educational performance.

Matinee Idylls returns this season with another fantastic “menu” of distinguished musicians presenting a colorful variety of music — chamber style in the intimate Gregory Family Theater — featuring exceptional artistry and informal commentary on the music. Each Matinee Idylls performance features a luncheon prepared by a local restaurant at 12:30 p.m., followed by a one-hour concert at 1:30 p.m. and a coffee and dessert reception with the artists.

Mason Jazz opens the 2016-2017 Matinee Idylls series with Minding the Drums in Congo Square on Tuesday, October 4, 2016. This musical journey travels from jazz’s birthplace of New Orleans to Chicago’s roaring 1920’s music scene to the swingin’ “cradle of jazz” in Kansas City and other legendary jazz cities. Sax virtuoso Jim Carroll leads the premier Mason Jazz Chamber Ensemble comprising faculty and students in a program that features songstress extraordinaire, Darden Purcell. Lunch served by Mum Mum.

On Tuesday, November 1, 2016, in Symphonic Conversations, the violin-viola duo of Marcolivia – Olivia Hajioff and Marc Ramirez – is joined by cellist Vasily Popov and pianist Ralitza Patcheva to explore works by Brahms and Robert Fuchs. Lunch served by Grafton Street.

mi_vaopera-tasteThe “Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia,” Virginia Opera, returns with a program of opera favorites by the talented young artists of the Herndon Foundation Emerging Artists Program on Tuesday, February 21, 2017. A Taste of Opera features tomorrow’s talented opera stars performing highlights from the Virginia Opera’s 2016-2017 season. Lunch served by À La Carte.

The Art of the Piano on Tuesday, March 28, 2016, is an afternoon of inspiring piano music from award-winning pianist Linda Apple Monson. Monson will be joined by coloratura soprano Lisa Berger and pianist Anna Balakerskaia for repertoire including Spanish masters Albeniz and Turina, German masters Bach and Beethoven and Russian masters Prokofiev and Rubinstein. Lunch served by À La Carte.

Each year, local arts organizations present a vibrant program of performing arts on the stages of the Hylton Center. Officially known as the Hylton Center’s Resident Arts Partners, all of these organizations are based locally in Prince William County and the City of Manassas. Our 2016-2017 Resident Arts Partners are Manassas Symphony Orchestra, Prince William Little Theatre, Manassas Ballet Theatre, Manassas Chorale and Youth Orchestras of Prince William.

The 2016-2017 performances by the Resident Arts Partners include: Manassas Ballet Theatre’s Frankenstein, The Nutcracker, Carmina Burana and More!, and Romeo and Juliet.

Manassas Chorale presents Love Actually, Rejoice and Be Merry!,” “Voices United: Honor and Majesty,” and “Earth, Sea and Sky.”

Manassas Symphony Orchestra presents Il Virtuosi, Family Concert: Winter Carnival, Musical Morsels, and Symphonic Exuberance.

Prince William Little Theatre presents CabaretBat Boy: The Musical, and Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike.

Youth Orchestras of Prince William presents Festive Fall and Let It Bloom!

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Subscriptions to Hylton Presents, Hylton Family Series, and Matinee Idylls are available to members of the Friends of the Hylton Center now. Subscriptions go on sale to the general public on April 6, 2016. Tickets to individual performances are available for purchase on Aug. 1, 2016. Tickets are available at the Hylton Performing Arts Center ticket office, by calling (888) 945-2468, or purchasing them online. Ticket office hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free parking is available in the lot next to the Hylton Center.

About the Hylton Performing Arts Center

Dedicated to bringing a world-class performing arts venue to the Prince William region, the Hylton Performing Arts Center was born out of a partnership among Prince William County, George Mason University, the City of Manassas, the Commonwealth of Virginia and individuals and businesses in the private sector. Soaring more than nine stories and boasting a stunning mix of copper, glass and masonry, the 85,000-square foot center is home to two unparalleled performance venues for local arts groups and performers from around the world, as well as university-related activities. Modeled after the intimate European opera houses of the 19th century, Merchant Hall is a 1,123-seat multipurpose proscenium theater, which is encircled by 27 private boxes that rise three levels. The Gregory Family Theater is a flexible, 4,400-square foot space that can be configured for many different types of performances and events. In addition, the Didlake Grand Foyer, with its sweeping staircase, provides an ideal setting for community, corporate and social events. The Hylton Performing Arts Center, the only building of its kind in the area, has quickly become the cultural hub of Prince William County and the surrounding communities and is a shining example of civic collaboration and commitment to the arts.

About George Mason University

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George Mason University is Virginia’s largest public research university. Located near Washington, D.C., Mason enrolls more than 33,000 students from 130 countries and all 50 states. Mason has grown rapidly over the past half-century and is recognized for its innovation and entrepreneurship, remarkable diversity and commitment to accessibility. Mason is also one of the best values in higher education, producing graduates who lead all Virginia schools with the highest annual salaries.