from the clash of race and creed
prelude for orchestra

by Brian T. Field (USA)

This work takes its name from a line of a hymn by Rowland H. Prichard (1811-1887) with a text by William P. Merrill (1867-1954) entitled “Not alone for mighty empire” published in 1909.  While working on the recurring themes within this piece, the United States saw the terrorist attacks of 9/11/01.   In remembrance of that event, I incorporated fragments of this hymn within the fabric of the other motives in the work, drawn to this hymn in particular as it reflects a sentiment of spiritual reconciliation for all peoples without overt patriotism for any one nation. 

In the course of the work, the abbreviated hymn is exposed at the beginning simply and

solemnly — returns at the climax, celebratory yet surrounded by the motives of the main body of the piece — and closes with a modified yet still hopeful recapitulation of the hymn.