On Friday morning, commuters at the Market East station heard a sextet as they got off the train. Later on, lunchtime diners at the Reading Terminal Market heard a string trio.
The surprise “pop-up” concerts were the first public performances of the Philadelphia Orchestra’s new public relations campaign, “Listen to Your Heart,” which encourages Philadelphians to buy tickets and donate to their orchestra. The organization is now in its sixth week of bankruptcy proceedings.
“It’s wonderful for the musicians to be in touch with the people in the community,” said president Allison Vulgamore, “and remind them that the orchestra is made up of wonderful individuals.”
Most of the places the orchestra performs have paying audiences hanging on every note, but many people at the Reading Terminal Market came looking for a pulled pork sandwich.
“This is a very relaxed, casual setting, but the music has to be just as good in either setting,” said violinist Pamela Fay. “We strive hard to play the best for any audience.”
Fay, a substitute musician with the Philadelphia Orchestra for 20 years, was joined by Paul Roby on violin and Richard Harlow on cello.