Leslie Condon Survey

To coincide with Croydon Citadel Band's A Tribute to Major Leslie Condon festival at Regent Hall corps on 8 March 2014, BugleTweet conducted a survey of Leslie Condon works. 

Method

The survey asked respondents to name the one Leslie Condon work that is called to mind whenever the great composers' name is mentioned.  Using the surveymonkey website, I created a list of all of Condon's published brass works and via Twitter and Facebook, invited social media users to visit the website and make their nomination. There is a maximum of 100 responses permitted in the free version of surveymonkey, so I replicated the survey two more times to allow for more than 100 nominations to be made. The survey ran from 2000 GMT on 7 March, to 1500 GMT on 9 March 2014. 

233 people responded and, as a number of respondents remarked, it was a difficult task to nominate just one piece as many of Les' works have a special place in our hearts. However the rationale behind choosing one was that we each are forced to nail our colours to the mast and specify our own iconic Condon piece.

The pieces outlined in the survey were:

AWAY IN A MANGER
BEAUTY OF THE BARLEY FIELD
BLYTH HERITAGE
BOGNOR REGIS
BRAZILIAN JUBILEE
CALL OF THE RIGHTEOUS, THE
CELEBRATION
CELESTIAL MORN
CHALLENGE OF SERVICE
CITY OF THREE SPIRES
CONCERTINO FOR TROMBONE (Transcription)
CONFIDENT TRUST
DAY OF SALVATION
DEUTSCHER KONGRESS
DUKE STREET
EASTER GLORY
EASTER MESSAGE, THE
EXETER TEMPLE
FAITH REBORN
FAKENHAM TEMPLE
FESTIVITY
FLOODS OF JOY
FRONT LINE, THE
GEMS FOR HIS CROWN (arr)
GIFT FOR HIS ALTAR
GLORY BOUND
GOD REST YE MERRY GENTLEMEN
GOOD CHRISTIAN MEN REJOICE
GREENFORD
HEALING WATERS
HERITAGE OF SERVICE

I CAN THINK OF HIM (arr)
I LOVE TO SING
IN THE LIGHT 
IN WONDER BEHOLDING
JOY IN BETHLEHEM
KINSHASA
LAKESIDE
MANGER SCENE, THE
MIDLOTHIAN
MILLOM CENTENARY
MY REFUGE (arr)
PEACE OF HEART
PIANO TRIO, Op. 97 (transcription)
PRAYER OF CHILDHOOD
PRESENT AGE, THE
RADIANT PATHWAY
REGENT HALL YOUNG PEOPLE
REJOICE (arr.)
SOMETHING FOR JESUS (arr.)
SONG OF EXUBERANCE
SONG OF THE ETERNAL
SPIRIT DIVINE
SPLENDOUR OF YOUTH
ST ETHELWALD
ST PETER PORT
SWISS RHAPSODY FOR FLUGELHORN
TEMPLE VISION
TRUST IN THE LORD (arr.)
UNIVERSAL MESSAGE
WARRIORS VICTORIOUS
WILL OF GOD, THE
WONDER OF CHRISTMAS, THE

Results

As you can see from the chart above, The Present Age just pipped The Call of the Righteous to first place.  

All in all, 18 of Major Condon's works were nominated, but to save things looking too complex, the top 8 are identified in the chart above, and the remaining 10 (identified as 'others' in the chart) which had either 1 or 2 nominations only, are not outlined separately. Those pieces were:

BEAUTY OF THE BARLEY FIELD (2 nominations)
BLYTH HERITAGE (2)
CONCERTINO FOR TROMBONE (1)
FAITH REBORN (2)
FESTIVITY (2)
IN WONDER BEHOLDING (2)
PEACE OF HEART (1)
SOMETHING FOR JESUS (1)
SONG OF EXUBERANCE (1)
SPLENDOUR OF YOUTH (1)


Precision

As you will appreciate, this is not an exact science. After all, 233 responses is not enough to draw concrete conclusions. If nothing else though, the results are an indication that The Present Age and The Call of the Righteous are two of Condon's most iconic works.
9 March 2014 

What fun the exercise was!  Hour by hour Present Age and Call of the Righteous exchanged places until the last. Who knows, another hour and it could have swung the other way.

Best of all though, this simple exercise serves as a reminder of just how much of an impact Major Condon and his music has had on generations of Salvationists. 

Well done Les, and thank you God for allowing Les's music to touch our hearts.


Martin Cordner

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