LIVE OAK — The Friends of Music will begin the 2019–2020 Concert Season this week.

Those who have attended a concert by the Lawson Ensemble, will be pleased to know they are returning to Live Oak on Friday at 7:30 p.m. Those who have not heard these wonderful performers are invited to this free concert at Covenant First Presbyterian Church, 421 White Avenue in Live Oak. For this concert, this delightful string trio will be joined by Xiaodi Liu, oboist, who played with the Atlanta Symphony this year, and Conrad Cornelison, principal bassoonist of the Jacksonville Symphony.

The Lawson Ensemble was formed in 2015 as a result of group members’ desire to consistently perform chamber music with a level of excellence and commitment and to share the results with the Jacksonville and regional community. Founding members are violinist Aurica Duca, violinist/violist Clinton Dewing, and cellist Nick Curry. The group is in residence at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville and performs regularly on the UNF campus, in Jacksonville, and around the region. In the summer of 2016, the group toured and played concerts in England and toured Germany in 2019. Duca and Dewing are husband and wife and are both full-time members of the Jacksonville Symphony. Curry is the Associate Professor of Cello at UNF, where he teaches. His wife, Cara Tasher, is the Director of Choral Activities at UNF. The trio has been playing together for several years, but a generous donation to the UNF music department allowed them to form an official ensemble and invite other gifted musicians to play with them for select programs. Curry, Dewing and Duca believe in the enduring power of chamber music, the necessity for all music students to have a chamber experience, and the need for audiences to feel the immediacy, intimacy and beauty of the best chamber works.

Friday’s program will include a Mozart oboe quartet, a Devienne quartet with bassoon, and probably a Beethoven string trio.

Other concerts in the 2019–2020 Friends of Music concert season will include an ensemble from the Ritz Chamber Players, a couple of wonderful pianists playing a fun program of piano duets, and another concert to be arranged.

Admission is free and a reception follows all of the Friends of Music concerts. For more information call 386-365-4941.

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