Music: Music's New Friends

String quartets have long played to a smaller public than flea circuses. But one U.S. musical organization, Manhattan's New Friends of Music, which has succeeded in making chamber music pay, last week gathered reverently to put on their 100th concert.

While the famed Budapest Quartet played compositions by Schumann and Haydn, a packed house listened with hushed attention, savored each trill of the viola, each violinistic vibration. Many of the audience were well-known Manhattan musicians who had dropped in for a quiet taste of musicians' music. Many others were concert-hardened music lovers whom...