New Music Director Grew Up In Doylestown "We're Absolutely, Positively Delighted," Says One Searcher Of Rosalind Erwin. She Was One Of Seven Considered.

Posted: July 08, 1993

The search is over. For the last two seasons, guest conductors and questionnaires have been a part of these musicians' lives. Now, all that is behind them with the naming of Rosalind Erwin as music director of the Bucks County Symphony Society.

Seven guest conductors have directed the 70 musicians over the last two years. After each performance, the audience, the orchestra and the symphony society's board of directors completed in-depth questionnaires.

"We're absolutely, positively delighted with our choice. All . . . feel the same way . . . the orchestra and the board and the audience," said Mary T. Walrond, who served as board president during the search. "We're thrilled with her enthusiasm and musicianship and the joy that she has brought to the audience in the two concerts she has played. She brings excellent credentials to the podium."

Erwin, a Philadelphia resident, has several ties to Bucks County. She grew up in Doylestown Borough, and one of her ancestors was an original owner of the tract of land now known as Erwinna. "I'm very happy to be appointed to this position. I didn't realize going back to the town I was raised in would have this effect," said Erwin, who met classmates she hadn't seen in 20 years at the concerts she conducted.

Erwin, who plays clarinet, is music director of the DePaul Chamber Orchestra at Delaware County Community College in Media and conductor/music director of the Settlement Music School Chamber Orchestra in Philadelphia.

She said she was enthusiastic about the efforts of the Bucks County Symphony Society to expand the orchestra and make it more accessible.

"The orchestra is in a growth spirit right now, and I feel privileged to be part of the many changes that are upcoming. . . . Hopefully, we'll grow together over the next couple of years," she said.

The orchestra's five-concert season will begin in October. For information about tickets, call 348-2381.

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The New Hope Performing Arts Festival will open its season tonight with two one-act comedies by Peter Tolan, a writer for the television series Murphy Brown.

Pillowtalk and Stay Carl Stay will run through July 25 at the private Solebury School on Phillips Mill Road, New Hope.

"They're very smart little sophisticated comedies with a very broad appeal," said Robin Larsen, director of the New Hope Arts Commission.

In Stay Carl Stay, a young woman replaces her selfish yuppie boyfriend with a dog, portrayed by a male actor. In Pillowtalk, two male traveling companions are faced with the prospect of sharing one bed for the evening.

"Pillowtalk plays with all the feelings and doubts of the situation," Larsen said.

Performances are Thursdays through Sundays, with varying curtain times. Prices range from $10 to $12.

On July 22, the comedies will not be performed so that the festival can offer a concert by The Flirtations, an a cappella group. Reservations are necessary for the concert, which will begin at 8 p.m. at the Eagle Fire Company on Route 202 in New Hope. Tickets are $15 for the show or $30 for the show and a light buffet and wine party afterward to meet the singers.

In addition to the one-act comedies this weekend, a concert by the Main Street Brass is planned for 4 p.m. Sunday at Solebury School. Tickets are $10.

On Wednesday, theatergoers will be treated to a work in progress. A staged reading of He Who, a comedy by Bob Griffiths of New Hope, will be followed by a discussion with the audience.

"The audience helps clarify the direction of the play through their comments," said Larsen, who added that He Who might be developed as a featured production for a future festival.

Tickets for He Who, which will be performed at 8 p.m. at the Solebury School, are $5. For ticket reservations for any of the festival performances, call 862-9894.

The Lenape Chamber Ensemble is performing three concerts this summer at Delaware Valley College in Doylestown Township. The ensemble, which features several musicians from the Philadelphia Orchestra, will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 17 and July 24.

Saturday's program will include pieces by Chopin, Beethoven and Dohnanyi. The performance will be followed by a reception to meet the musicians. Ticket prices are $12 for adults and $9 for older residents and students. Subscription prices for the three performances are $28 for adults and $21 for older residents and students. For information, call 294-9361.

Lips Together, Teeth Apart, which opens tomorrow at the Spring Garden Mill Playhouse in Northampton Township, examines the lives of two couples living in the age of Reaganism, yuppies and AIDS. Terrence McNally, who recently won a Tony award for the book of Kiss of the Spider Woman, wrote this comic drama.

"At times we don't always like what we see, but he does it with warmth and compassion and humor," said director Curtis Herr. "We can recognize pieces of ourselves in the characters. . . . There's a lot of personal journeys in the course of the play."

Lips Together, Teeth Apart will run tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday, July 16, 17 and 18, and July 22, 23 and 24. Friday and Saturday performances start at 8:30 p.m., with ticket prices of $8. Thursday and Sunday performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and cost $6. For information, call 860-0818.

Children will perform for children at the Bucks County Playhouse in seven summer productions, beginning with Jack and the Beanstalk tomorrow. The productions are presented by the Theatre Arts Camp of Budzynski Studios in Doylestown Borough.

"It's good experience for the children because they get a live theater experience in front of a live audience on a real stage," said Michael Naylor, Playhouse press representative.

A different musical is planned every Friday through Aug. 20 at the Playhouse on South Main Street in New Hope. Jack and the Beanstalk will be followed by Aladdin, Pinocchio, Cinderella, Nursery Rhyme Review, Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid. Performances are at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. with an added 9:30 a.m. performance for Aladdin July 16. Ticket prices are $5 and reservations are advised. For tickets, call 862-2041.

Neighbors welcomes news about art and entertainment in Bucks County. Please send all information, including a telephone number for verification, to Valerie Reed, Bucks County Neighbors, 830 Town Center Dr., Langhorne, Pa. 19047.

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