Notes 6/25

The Philadelphia Orchestra's Free Neighborhood Concert on June 25 at 7 p.m. on the Great Plaza at Penn's Landing includes appropriate music for "Let Freedom Ring" along with numerous guest artists including (above) vocalist Laurin Talese.  

The Bucks County Playhouse, a pleasing scenic drive from Phila., has an appealing  summer entertainment called "Is There Still Sex in the City?", a workshop production written by and starring Candace Bushnell, the original Carrie Bradshaw, who brings to this new live stage show her "saucy humor and spot-on insights  into life, love and relationships". Due to social distancing, tickets must be bought in pods of two or more. Through July 18. Details and directions at 215-862-2121 or www.buckscountyplayhouse.org  •

Now that the heat has settled in for a while, the super-abundance of fountains and spray-grounds is a happy seasonal bonus bound to delight families of all sizes and ages.  Among the favorites are the huge plaza at Dilworth Park west of City Hall at 15th and Market and the newish Sisters' Cities Park near the Basilica at 18th and the Parkway with lush greenery, a snappy restaurant, benches and other amenities. Full details on the vast scope of these cool sites at https://www.phila.gov/parks-rec-finder/#/locations/sprinklers-and-spraygrounds

Big news on the cultural/entertainment scene, as our city begins to spring back to full live in-person attractions of all kinds, is the unexpected announcement of the partial merger of the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. Described by the NY Times as a result of the pandemic, saying "the Orchestra and the Kimmel Center are betting that by pooling resources, they can better navigate the financial and artistic challenges  of the post-pandemic era". Let's applaud what sounds like a great plan for our city's cultural life and its performers and subscribers.  •

Bartram's Garden's long celebration of Juneteenth, now a national holiday, includes a series of related lectures.  On June 26, "Horticulture Volunteer Day:". 54th St. and Lindbergh Blvd.  Information at 215-729-5281 or info@bartrams.org

A reminder that BalletX is back for in-person live performances at the Mann Center introducing three world premieres by acclaimed choreographers Hope Boykin, Matthew Neenan and Dwight Rhoden, June 24 and 25 at 7:30 p.m., June 26 at 2:00 and 7:30 p.m.  Tickets and directions at balletx.org or at 1-800-982-2787.  •

The Philadelphia Orchestra's appreciation of its ticket holders and for those who aren't always able to buy tickets to its performances, are offering another Free Neighborhood  Concert on June 25 at 7 p.m. on the Great Plaza at Penn's Landing, an ideal venue with breezes from the Delaware River and plenty of open space. "Let Freedom Ring" is hosted by story-teller/actor Charlotte Blake Alston with vocalist Laurin Talese, members of the Philadelphia Orchestra and students from the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts. On the program, works by Johnson, Bizet, Joplin, Beethoven, selections from Bernstein's  “West Side Story" and Sousa's "Stars and Stripes Forever" march, performed by small orchestral groups without a conductor. Bring a chair, water, a hat. In addition, members of the PO are performing a free brief chamber concert on June 28 at 7 p.m. with Yannick Nezet-Seguin and special guest, composer Jennifer Higdon, a virtual performance featuring six members of the PO including violinists David Kim and Juliette Kang, Yannick Nezet Seguin and Chris Barltett on piano in works by Higdon, Mozart and Mendelssohn.  Free. www.philorch.org/ocvo or Facebook and the orchestra's website. Details on both these events at 215-893-1999 or www.philorch.org  •

Professor Ingrid Clarfield, well known piano teacher in the Princeton area, presents "Performathon" on June 26 at 1:30 p.m.,  a recital performed by her students as a fund raiser for the Children's Fund at Children's Hospital of Phila. (CHOP). This worthy event will be highlighted by the program's instruments, two Steinway Concert Grands generously provided by Jacobs Music Co. Princeton Meadows Church at 545 Meadows Road in Princeton, NJ. Free;  a good will offering will be taken. Directions at 609-434-0222.  •

Family Pride Day is set for June 26 at the Franklin Institute when scientists mingle with drag queens and performances and activities for all ages fill the day, "a joyful celebration of inclusivity and diversity for all LGBTQ people and their allies". Noon to 4 p.m. at 222 N. 20th St.  215-448-1200. Continuing through June 30, Disability Pride PA is a virtual celebration of  people living with disabilities and includes a variety of accessible and inclusive programs.  www.DisabilityPridePhjila.org  •

The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia offers the second in their series of Orchestra in the Garden concerts, set for June 27, a program of works by Telemann, Bach and Corelli in the open air on the exquisite grounds of Stoneleigh, a natural garden in Villanova.  Dirck Brosse conducts. 6:30 p.m. Details and directions at 215-545-5451.

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