More than 45,000 people are expected to attend the 29th annual Kingdom Bound festival, which takes place Wednesday through next Saturday at Darien Lake. Christian music, it seems, is holding its own in an increasingly complex world.
“I think there is a draw to it these days, because of the fact that, I think there’s hope, and people are starved for hope,” said Anthony Hoisington of the Brothers McClurg (see accompanying story). “They want to know that someone cares for them, hopes for them. At the end of the day they don’t want to feel lonely. This type of music is really encouraging people to know that there is a God that loves you and cares about you and really wants to get to know you. I think that’s some of the pull.”
The musicianship doesn’t hurt, either, Hoisington added.
“Certainly there’s great music that will be played at Kingdom Bound,” he said. “Whether you’re Christian or not, there’ll be musicians there who can play.”
The Brothers McClurg perform at 7 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. next Saturday at the Worship Tent.
Here are a few other highlights of Kingdom Bound 2015:
• For King and Country. Formerly known as Joel and Luke, this Grammy Award-winning team of two Australian brothers headlines the Wednesday lineup, taking the main stage at 9:30 p.m..
• The Newsboys. Founded in 1985 in Mooloolaba, Queensland, Australia, the Newsboys are one of today’s top Christian groups. The band filmed a sequence for last year’s movie “God’s Not Dead.” They are the headliners Thursday, playing at 9:30 p.m.
• Casting Crowns. Based in Georgia, Casting Crowns was formed in 1999. They headline on Friday, performing at 9:30 p.m.
• Kathryn Scott performs at the Worship Tent at 11 a.m. Friday and 8:15 p.m. next Saturday. Scott and her pastor husband are based at a church in Ireland. Hoisington heard her a couple of years ago at Kingdom Bound, and liked her music. “It was very inspiring and encouraging.”
• Rend Collective appears at 7:30 p.m. next Saturday. This group from Northern Ireland has a rustic, witty, folk-rock style.
• LeCrae headlines next Saturday, playing at 9:30 p.m. The Grammy Award-winning LeCrae Moore’s album “Anomaly” debuted last year not only at No. 1 on the gospel and Christian charts, but at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.
There also will be speakers and discussions geared toward various ages. Among the local presenters will be Jill Kelly; fitness trainer Robbie Raugh; and Niagara Falls-born hip-hop artist Fonz Carter.
A new addition this year is the KB Creative Interactive Arts Tent featuring live art demonstrations of painting, pottery and drama.