The Friends of Vienna are celebrating this year -- their concert series is beginning its 30th season. Among the artists scheduled for this fall and spring 2006 are the Ravel Trio, the Clara String Quartet, pianist Joel Hastings, mezzo soprano Melissa Thorburn and a holiday program in December featuring the Niagara Frontier Brass Quintet.
The season starts Sunday afternoon with chamber music performed by three musicians from the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra: violinist Ansgarius Aylward, violist Valerie Heywood and cellist Roman Mekinulov. Joining them will be pianist Claudia Hoca -- who, series organizer Paul Gunther recalls, was one of the first artists featured when the Friends of Vienna was founded years ago by music lover Edith Horowitz.
The concert, which features romantic piano quartets of Brahms and Faure, takes place at 3:30 p.m. Sunday in Unity Church, 1243 Delaware Ave. As always, coffee and pastries will follow at the adjoining Viennese Cafe.
Admission is $4 for members, $6 for nonmembers and only $1 for students. And here's a real deal: Season tickets are $25 per person for eight concerts, including membership.
For info, call 649-1743.
-- Mary Kunz Goldman