Press Room

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November 17, 2011
Contact: Press & Media Relations Coordinator (703-993-8794)

For general information about tickets, seating, parking, etc., for performances and events happening at the Center for the Arts, please contact the ticket office directly at 703-993-2787.





Saturday, Dec. 10, 2011 at 8 p.m.


FAIRFAX, Va., Nov. 11, 2011 – Known for his quintessential impressionistic style, George Winston burst onto the music scene in the 1980s with a collection of seasonal-themed recordings that quickly found an eager audience. His distinctive melodic style, which he calls “rural folk piano,” was influenced by his early years in Montana, as well as the music of great New Orleans R&B pianists. This holiday season, Winston presents an evening of exquisitely enchanting music that is sure to evoke the spirit of the season. Winston brings “The Winter Show” to George Mason University’s Center for the Arts in Fairfax on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2011 at 8 p.m. A pre-performance discussion, free to ticket holders, begins 45 minutes prior to the performance on the Center’s Grand Tier III. Pre-performance discussions are sponsored by the Friends of the Center for the Arts.

For this performance, the audience is encouraged to join the Center for the Arts in support of a local Washington, D.C. area food bank by bringing a donation of canned food to the concert. Winston will also donate a portion of the artist’s proceeds from his CD sales to the food bank.

Winston grew up in Montana and spent his later years in Mississippi and Florida. His early musical influences were instrumental rock and R&B artists, including Floyd Cramer, The Ventures, Booker T and The MG’s and Jimmy Smith. Inspired by R&B, jazz, blues and rock music (especially The Doors), Winston began playing organ in 1967, and later switched to acoustic piano in 1971 after hearing recordings from the 1920s and 1930s by legendary stride pianists Thomas “Fats” Waller and Teddy Wilson.

Winston recorded his debut album, “Ballads and Blues” in 1972, and has since recorded more than 10 solo albums, including the nature-inspired “Autumn,” “Winter into Spring,” “December” “Summer” and “Forest.” Among those albums are also two tributes to legendary jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi, including “Linus and Lucy – The Music of Vince Guaraldi” and  “Love Will Come – The Music of Vince Guaraldi – Vol. 2.” He has also released the Montana-inspired “Plains” and “Montana – A Love Story,” and “Night Divides The Day – The Music of The Doors.” Winston also recently released an album called “Gulf Coast Blues & Impressions – A Hurricane Relief Benefit,” which features original compositions, as well as pieces by renowned New Orleans pianists Henry Butler, James Booker and Dr. John. In 2001, he also released “Remembrance – A Memorial Benefit,” a six-song CD of piano, guitar and harmonica solos, to benefit those affected by 9/11. In addition, Winston has composed music for the children’s videos “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes,” “Pumpkin Circle” and “Bread Comes to Life.” He also recorded the solo piano soundtrack for an audio recording of the children’s story “The Velveteen Rabbit” for Rabbit Ears Productions. His next two recordings, released simultaneously next year will be “A Change Is Gonna Come – A Benefit” and “Gulf Coast Blues & Impressions – A Relief Benefit 2 – Save the Wetlands.” Winston is also releasing two new digital tracks to benefit the OCCUPY movement: an original track called “Autumn Spring,” and Sam Cooke’s “A Change is Gonna Come.”  These tracks will become available within the next few weeks and will be downloadable on Winston’s website (, iTunes, Amazon and wherever digital music is sold.

 Winston currently spends much of his time touring, often playing solo piano, guitar and harmonica. He also studies the techniques of the great New Orleans pianists Henry Butler, James Booker, Professor Longhair, Dr. John and John Cleary, and interprets pieces on piano by his favorite composers. In addition, Winston is working on several solo projects, including recording the masters of the Hawaiian Slack Key guitar for an extensive series of albums for Dancing Cat Records, and recording music by his major inspirations for harmonica playing, Sam Hinton, Rick Epping and Curt Bouterse.

George Winston plays Steinway Pianos. For more information on the artist, please visit


Tickets for GEORGE WINSTON are $24, $40, $48. Charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit The Center for the Arts complex is located on the Fairfax campus of George Mason University at the intersection of Braddock Road and Route 123. Paid parking is located in the deck adjacent to the mainstage Concert Hall and FREE parking is located in university lot K.  Visit 

About Great Performances at Mason

Great Performances at Mason is a program of George Mason University's Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA). CVPA provides an academic environment in which the arts are explored as individual disciplines and interdisciplinary forms that strengthen one another. The college prepares students for careers as creators, performers, teachers, scholars, arts leaders and arts entrepreneurs. Understanding that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the college, welcomes a variety of professional and world-renowned artists, musicians and actors to its stage. Students have the opportunity to perform, create and exhibit their work in a wide variety of public venues including a 2,000-seat Concert Hall. CVPA is home to the Schools of Music, Dance and Art, the Department of Theater, as well as the Computer Game Design, Arts Management and Film and Video Studies programs.

About George Mason University

George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university. George Mason University – Where Innovation Is Tradition.