Hartford, CT – On October 21st, The Salvation Army New York Staff Band gave an extraordinary performance at Immanuel Congregational Church in Hartford, CT, thrilling listeners of all ages. Major Jorge Marzan, Divisional Commander for Southern New England, welcomed the crowd saying, “We are blessed to have you with us this evening to enjoy this performance by the New York Staff Band.”
The crowd enjoyed renditions of Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus, Wake Up The Saint, Faith Is The Victory and many others. “The band, although it’s the beginning of the season, sounds in mid-season form right now,” said Major Roger Duperree, Divisional Secretary of the Southern New England Division. “They sound wonderful. Maybe part of it is the venue, but boy do they sound good. This is the heart and soul of who we are. It’s such a wonderful opportunity to have them here in Hartford to play for the community.”
“Throughout the course of the year, we try to travel around to different Salvation Army locations,” said Derek Lance, Bandmaster – New York Staff Band. “We do six or seven weekends a year. Earlier this morning, we did some teaching at the Manchester Citadel with some young people. They learned about singing, praise and worship groups, playing guitar, drums and brass instruments.”
Since 1887, the New York Staff Band of The Salvation Army has maintained the highest standards of musical practice and Christian ministry. As one of the nation’s oldest, continuous musical ensembles, the NYSB has rightfully been heralded as “America’s Foremost Brass Band.” The band’s honored status as the first staff band in Salvation Army history is matched by its excellence in musical performance and in its role as a trailblazer in repertoire, programming and service.
The band continues to be motivated by their love of Christ. That motivation they link to their calling to lift high the Christian Gospel. Their music making serves as an effective arm of The Salvation Army’s compassionate ministry, while the band also keeps true to the highest purpose of sacred music – giving praise and glory to God.
Brass banding has been a long-standing feature and tradition of The Salvation Army since its beginnings in London, England in 1865. The Frye family, forming a small brass ensemble, would accompany Salvationists as they sang hymns in their church services, both indoors and outdoors. The brass instruments proved to be very durable in inclement weather.
The NYSB ranks among the most widely traveled groups in band history. They have toured the United Kingdom more than ten times, toured Europe and Scandinavia on multiple occasions, traveled several times to the Far East, Australia, and New Zealand, been across the border into Canada on more than 20 occasions, and performed coast to coast in the Western Hemisphere.