Phoenix Firebirds win New York State Field Band Championships

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The New York State Field Band Championship was Sunday at the Syracuse Dome. Fifty high school marching bands clashed with over 4,000 band members. The Phoenix Firebirds Marching Band won in their division, taking home the coveted Governor’s Cup.

James Hagg, senior of the Phoenix Central School District, has spent the past six years with the marching band.


What would you like to know

  • The New York State Field Band Championship was Sunday at the Syracuse Dome
  • Fifty high school marching bands competed with over 4,000 marching band members
  • The competition lasted 14 hours

“The marching band is so fundamentally different from all other activities,” Hagg said. “From your technique to the way you carry yourself, your posture, it all teaches you how to be a better human. And it teaches you to respect your elders and your superiors.

Being a section chief has been a huge achievement for Hagg.

“It’s tough, but I love it,” Hagg said. “It challenges me in every way. I am learning new things about myself. It’s incredible. It’s a little more scary because you’re being judged, but that’s the fun part.

But after high school, Hagg plans to join the US Air Force.

“I still have a very big interest in music, but I love my country and I want to join the air force. “

Hagg says music will always be a part of him.

The Phoenix Firebirds won first place in the second small school class with a score of 88.6.


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