Casual Concerts

UUCB’s Casual Concerts aim to share the universal ministry of music and the power of sound with the broader Buffalo community. As we do in our services, these concerts showcase a diverse range of musical styles and sound-based experiences so that there is something for everyone. We hope these monthly offerings help lift our community’s spirits as we climb out of the recent times of COVID isolation. Events generally occur every third Saturday of the month at 2pm, or at the specific days and times listed below. You can watch the shows in our sanctuary or stream them on our YouTube page. A free-will offering will be taken and proceeds are split between the musical presenters and the church.

If you wish to submit a proposal for our recital series, please contact Dr. Jessie Downs at Please read our Casual Concerts FAQ for important information about our procedures.


Saturday April 15 at 2pm – Duo Purla.

Duo Purla is a Buffalo-based violin and guitar duo performing classical and contemporary chamber music. We pride ourselves on presenting widely varied and engaging repertoire for any audience. In addition to classical works by Beethoven, Haydn, Paganini, Piazzolla and others, our sets include newly commissioned pieces and original compositions. We have recently been a featured ensemble at the 21st Century Guitar Conference held in Muncie, IN and were the resident ensemble for the 2021 Festival virtual conference.
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Saturday May 20th at 2pm – Musician Chris Sierzchula

SAVE THE DATE! UUCB’s keyboardist, Musician Chris Sierzchula, will be presenting a musical feast! More info to follow.

Saturday June 17th at 2pm – The Bitter Nasties

We are excited to have the Bitter Nasties return to the Casual Concert Series! The Bitter Nasties are an eclectic folk rock amalgamation. They write original, thought provoking and quirky music with a fresh take on the classics. Website:

Saturday July 15th at 2pm – Little Cake

Ana Vafai began as a classical musician and teacher, gaining her bachelors and graduate degrees in education and violin/piano performance. Since 2011 she has recorded music all over town and developed a persona as a performer, singer and instrument player in the touring group ‘Little cake and Jack Topht’ (two albums released) and as vocalist in winner of the Buffalo Spree’s “best local music act”, RADARADA, a popular, hip-hop/jazzy project in town. Ana is ecstatic to have assembled a personal band, a talented bunch to perform Little cake’s original compositions, many of which you can hear/download demo versions of at

Little Cake is…

Ana Vafai (writer, lead vocals, keys, bass, guitar) — David Bailey (bass) — Meghan Attridge (vocals) — Katie Weissman (cello, vocals) — Evan Courtin (violin) — Tom Kolor (drums, percussion). More at

Saturday August 19 at 2pm – Saranaide

Saranaide is an accomplished vocalist, songwriter and musician based out of Buffalo, NY.  With parents from Panama and Puerto Rico, Saranaide has dipped into her DNA to embrace and celebrate the pulses and sounds of Latin America; exploding on the Buffalo Jazz Scene with a new vigor.  Inspired by the legends of soul and jazz riding on the rhythms of the world, Saranaide’s unique sound is sweet honey dripping over a spicy stew.

Saturday September 16th at 2pm – Incipio

Incipio is a new choral ensemble directed by Julia Anne Cordani. The group’s mission is to give young and burgeoning singers an opportunity to perform groundbreaking, evocative music in a group that prepares them for the professional vocal world. Incipio aims to perform a diverse repertoire – everything from video game music, to folk songs, to Broadway and pop ballads, to some very classic madrigals. Our singers, who come from a diverse array of backgrounds united by their musicianship, include several young music educators, choir singers, and professional performers from around Western New York.

Check out her YouTube Channel!

Saturday October 21st at 2pm – Zane Merritt, guitar

Zane has been playing and writing music for over 25 years, and his work covers a lot of stylistic ground–orchestral, chamber, jazz, metal, chiptune and more. Find out more about Zane.

photo credit: Abhipsa Chakraborty (instagram: @abhipsa_photography)

Saturday November 18th at 2pm – Alex McArthur Jazz Combo

We are delighted to have Alex return to our Casual Concert series. She is a versatile vocalist/performer residing in Buffalo, NY. Winner of the JazzBuffalo Poll Female Vocalist of 2021 & 2018, she can be found regularly performing with a variety of groups at various venues in the area.

Find them on Facebook!

Saturday December 16th at 2pmSAVE THE DATE for the Jay/Sharptet!

Saturday January 20th 2024 at 2pm – SAVE THE DATE for Tyler Wescott!


Saturday March 18th at 2pm – Bruce Pfeffer and Martha Malkiewicz, Piano Four Hands Recital.

Martha Malkiewicz and Bruce Pfeffer began their four-hand piano collaboration in 2017, inspired by a mutual interest in hosting musical “house parties” in the spirit of the 19 th -century Schubertiades. They have followed up on an annual basis with cultural soirees that also showcased the work of visual artists and photographers to augment the musical programs. Their repertoire includes masterworks by “The Immortals,” as well as rarities by lesser-known composers that deserve a hearing. For their March 2023 Casual Concert at the UUC Buffalo, Martha and Bruce offer “Keyboard Duets from Four Centuries,” featuring compositions by Mozart, Schubert, and Debussy, as well as what may be the earliest example of an original work for two players at one keyboard.

About the Artists

Saturday February 18th at 2pm – The Royall Consort

The Royall Consort was founded by Roland Hayes, David Abbott and Nancy Nuzzo 20 years ago to enjoy the music of the Renaissance and Baroque eras, and share that enjoyment with the community through their performances at local venues in the Buffalo area.

This concert will feature the rich texture and luscious harmonies of the French baroque chamber music of Marin Marais (1656 – 1728) and Jaques Bodin de Boismortier (1689 – 1755) and two suites by Englishman William Williams (1675 – 1701).

Saturday January 21st at 2pm – Sound Healing with Meagan Marcus.

Meagan Marcus is a Reiki Master and Sound Healer that  will guide you through a journey of self love and inner healing with her reiki infused, sacred instruments. These include an ocean drum, crystal triangle, and crystal sound bowls.

Sound Healing has been used for centuries to help realign the bodies vibrations, clear energetic blockages, and improve emotional, mental and physical well being. It can help reduce anxiety, improve sleepy quality, reduce pain and inflammation within the body, and provide a meditative experience, among so many other wonderful benefits. 

This one hour offering will leave you feeling relaxed and grounded and more in tune with your highest self. 

Please bring a yoga mat, blankets, pillows or whatever else will help you be the most comfortable as you will be lying down for the entirety of the offering. 

December 17th @ 2PM – Nusantara Arts Javanese Gamelan

Gamelan music from the island of Java in Indonesia is one of the oldest continuously played musical art forms in the world. It grew out of the bronze age and has remained popular as both a community and royal tradition on the island of Java for the last 1800 years. Gamelan music is a community art that can work only with cooperation, listening, empathy, and learning. It teaches patience, listening skills, and music philosophy, challenging players to change their perspectives on what music can be. In gamelan we create beautiful music together, with each player adding pieces to the whole.

Find them on Facebook!

October 15th @ 2PM – Buffalo String Works

Buffalo String Works opened its doors in September 2014. We offered violin lessons to 17 students and had a volunteer staff of 4 teachers and 3 teaching assistants. In 7 short years, we’ve grown significantly; we now offer free lessons in violin, viola, cello, and bass to 93 students and have a dedicated staff of 14 teachers and 25+ teaching assistants. In the fall of 2021 we moved into our own space on the West Side of Buffalo where we hope to continue to serve a growing and diverse population of youth throughout Buffalo!

Suggested Donation: $10.00

Find them on Facebook!

September 17th @ 2PM – Alex Huddleston: Guitar and Electronics

Alex Huddleston is a composer of chamber and electronic music, and a visual artist producing digital and algorithmic art. His music seeks to occupy a liminal space in which serendipitous relationships emerge and collapse in a play of familiarity and otherness. Centered on themes of alienation, sorrow, anxiety, schizophrenia, and fear, his work embodies a singular affect – there is too much and too little, it is too fast and too slow, it is elegant and awkward, it makes too much sense and makes no sense. Contradictions accumulate; all have the form of two yeses pointing outwards, rather than two nos pointing in.

Find him on YouTube!

August 20th @ 2PM – Alex McArthur Jazz Combo

Alex is a versatile vocalist/performer residing in Buffalo, NY. Winner of the JazzBuffalo Poll Female Vocalist of 2021 & 2018, she can be found regularly performing with a variety of groups at various venues in the area.

Find them on Facebook!

July 16th @ 2PM – Derick Evans & Nick Randall

Singer-songwriters and multi-instrumentalists Derick Evans and Nick Randall will perform an original 1 hour and 18-minute song-cycle for 2 voices, electric guitar, and electric bass. This new work – entitled “Darryl Donahue: One Day.” – paints a musical portrait of a fictionalized white-collared stranger, with each song dedicated to an hour of that day.

Derick’s Website:
Nick’s Website:
View the Performance!

June 19th @ 11:30AM – The Bitter Nasties

The Bitter Nasties are an eclectic folk rock amalgamation. They write original, thought provoking and quirky music with a fresh take on classics. Website:

May 21st @ 2PM – The Buffalo Silver Band

Spend an afternoon with the Buffalo Silver Band at the beautiful Unitarian Universalist Church of Buffalo (695 Elmwood Ave, Buffalo NY 14222). The program will have something for everyone, from music written specifically for British Brass Band music (Montclair Citadel by Stephen Bulla) to virtuosic soloists (Hunting Wabbits featuring Diana Bley) to jazz (Opus One).
Find them on Facebook!
View the Performance!

April 23rd @ 2PM – The Stringatarians

“Homegrown Grass,”  a program of tunes and songs from the Bluegrass, Celtic, and Old Time traditions by the Stringitarians:  Leslie Nickerson, Fiddle and Dulcimer; Athena McCrory, Banjo; Fran Manly, Guitar; Paul Zanolli, Bass.
View the Performance!