The Center for the Arts at George Mason University today announced its 2022/2023 season of Mainstage performances, featuring a diverse lineup of artists and ensembles across many genres, as part of Great Performances at Mason and the Family Series. Season passes are currently on sale at Friends of the Arts Center at cfa.gmu.edu/subscriptions or by phone at 703-993-2787. For the general public, season tickets go on sale Tuesday, May 24, and tickets for individual events go on sale Monday, August 1. More details are available on the Arts Center website.
“The sheer joy of being together in a shared performance space still feels precious to me after the past two years, and I wanted to fill next season with performers who will ensure that we all remember how special he is. ‘witness artistic brilliance live on stage,” shares programming director Adrienne Bryant Godwin. “From kicking off the season with Kristin Chenoweth to presenting Mason’s debut of Syncopated Ladies LIVE! From Chloe Arnold to the return of Japan’s KODO audience favorite taiko drummers, this season celebrates the unbridled joy of the performing arts.”
Launch of Great Performances at Mason with Emmy and Tony Award-winning performer Kristin Chenoweth, whose celebratory program For the Girls will be part of ARTS by George! Benefit, an annual fundraiser to support the arts at Mason.
Virginia Opera returns to the Center for the Arts with a thrilling season of performances including Wagner’s epic The Valkyrie, Gilbert and Sullivan’s beloved The Pirates of Penzance, Verdi’s lavish La Traviata and a moving contemporary work by composer Gregory Spears and librettist Greg Pierce, Fellow Travelers, called “one of the most accomplished New American operas” (Chicago Tribune) and “a near-perfect example of fast-paced musical drama” (The New York Times).
The Centre’s classical music offering includes a holiday performance by brother superstar pianists The 5 Browns, who have had three number 1 albums on Billboard magazine’s Classical Albums chart. The Munich Symphony Orchestra will perform Beethoven’s exuberant Symphony No. 7 and Brahms’ unique Violin Concerto with GRAMMY nominee Robert McDuffie. Fellow violinist Daniel Hope and the Zurich Chamber Orchestra will present their charismatic America program, featuring iconic works by Copland, Barber, Ellington, Price, Gershwin and more. The Center will co-present a special performance with the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra featuring Rachmaninoff’s epic Piano Concerto No. 2 with pianist George Li, known for his “astounding technical prowess…and depth of expression” (The Washington Post).
The Center welcomes three artists in residence Mason 2022/2023: Nrityagram Dance Ensemble, “rock stars of the dance world” based in Bangalore (New York Post); Native American-influenced hip-hop collective Indigenous Enterprise; and radical cultural collaborators Silkroad Ensemble, GRAMMY winners, who embrace a language of musical difference to create a more hopeful and inclusive world. Each residency will provide curated opportunities for Northern Virginia to get to know these artists with workshops, conversations, and events surrounding their performances.
Godwin notes, “Our three Mason-in-Residence Artists are all deeply rooted in cultural traditions, yet each brilliantly presents their work through a unique contemporary lens. One of India’s premier classical dance ensembles, Nrityagram will collaborate with Chitrasena from Sri Lanka. Dance Company, weaving together two dance vocabularies – Odissi from India and Kandyan from Sri Lanka.Indigenous Enterprise, which burst onto the scene just a few years ago, honors Native American identity through high-profile appearances at the mainstream television and collaborations with superstars like the Black Eyed Peas. I am particularly pleased to announce that the Silkroad Ensemble will participate in a three-year residency, during which they will support some of their ambitious projects under the new artistic direction of Rhiannon Giddens.
Various dance performances during the Center season include MOMIX Dance Illusionists’ “Incredible Fun” (Philadephia Inquirer) to celebrate their 40th anniversary, and the electrifying Chloe Arnold’s Syncopated Ladies LIVE! – created by DC-native and Emmy-nominated tap dancer and choreographer Chloe Arnold accompanied by her sister Maud. The Center welcomes back Doug Varone and Dancers, hailed by The New York Times for skillfully combining “bold, imaginative thought and movement,” for an evening of works featuring students from Mason’s School of Dance. The State Ballet of Georgia will also perform beautiful iconic works by George Balanchine and Ukrainian choreographer Yuri Possokhov. The Washington Post praised their “diplomacy through dance – a great and hopeful gift”.
Havana Cuba All-Stars will transport audiences to their homeland with the band Asere featuring special guest Brenda Navarrete, “a new vanguard of women in Cuban jazz” (The New Yorker). The Acting Company delivers a witty, swashbuckling production of The Three Musketeers, and Voctave’s sensational a cappella program The Corner of Broadway and Main Street spotlights favorite tunes ranging from Broadway musicals to Disney movies. Japanese taiko drum ensemble KODO will showcase exhilarating athleticism and “primal power” (Chicago Tribune) to celebrate their 40th anniversary, with One Earth Tour 2023: Tsuzumi, as gravity-defying acrobatic troupe Cirque FLIP Fabrique tackles literally to archetypal gender issues in her whimsical and wonderful show, Muse, with live vocals on stage.
Returning favorites at the Arts Center also include cheerful holiday performances by the world’s largest children’s choral group, the Vienna Boys Choir, drawing on six centuries of tradition; virtuoso violinists Natalie MacMaster & Donnell Leahy and their child musicians and jig dancers in A Celtic Family Christmas; and the American Festival Pops Orchestra, which will grace the halls with Holiday Pops: Songs of the Season under new artistic director and conductor Peter Wilson. For more than 25 years, Keyboard Conversations with Jeffrey Siegel has delighted Center audiences, and Siegel returns with four programs of his piano concerts with commentary. The Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra also returns to the Concert Hall with Hammond organist and GRAMMY nominee Bobby Floyd, star keyboardist Ray Charles, Doc Severinsen and the legendary Count Basie Orchestra.
The Center for the Arts’ family series returns with The Queen’s Cartoonists’ Holiday Hurrah!, a festive combination of holiday-related cartoons, film and jazz, with clips screened live in sync with the music. The Enchantment Theater Company’s wildly imaginative production of The Adventures of Harold and the Purple Crayon, based on the beloved children’s book, features life-size puppets, pantomime, dance, magic and drama. original music. The Passing Zone – two-time finalists on America’s Got Talent which holds five Guinness World Records and 18 International Jugglers’ Association Gold Medals – will also bring its wacky, jaw-dropping number of juggling, comedy and daredevils The Passing Zone Saves the World to amaze the whole family.
Unless otherwise specified, these performances are held at the Center for the Arts located at 4373 Mason Pond Dr, Fairfax, VA 22030.
Programs, artists and dates are subject to change. For the most up-to-date programming information, please visit the Arts Center website.
The Center for the Arts’ 2022/2023 season attendance protocols are subject to change based on CDC, Virginia, and George Mason University policies. See current policies at cfa.gmu.edu/expect.