The Present Age - Leslie Condon
The Present Age by Leslie Condon performed by the New York Staff Band (Bandmaster Derek Lance) at the NYSB's 130th Annual Festival at West Side Presbyterian Chuch in Ridgewood, NJ.
Program Note: The Christian youth sets out, confidently witnessing to his faith, only to find that the world is not as eager to hear as he is to proclaim. His theme, the introductory bars, receives somewhat rough and nonchalant treatment. His vow is nevertheless established, 'To serve the present age, my calling to fulfill...', only to be followed by a portrayal of 'hurdy-gurdy' frivolity, a flippant scherzo having little sense of direction or purpose. Horrors and hatreds of our world are typified in a grotesque march, relentlessly treading down any noble thoughts. The youthful Christian pledges again, 'I'll follow Thee...' hesitating at the thought 'deny Thee never', but his meditation is crudely interrupted by the resumed march, openly laughing and jeering at the 'saint upon his knees'. As he contemplates 'Be still and know that I am God' (flugel and horn duet), his spirit is calmed and he reaffirms 'It is well with my soul'. With renewed heart he strides in the challenge of the present age with 'Courage, brother, do not stumble' as his impetus.