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Front And Center: Drum Major Embraces Leadership Of Pirate Marching Band

Front And Center: Drum Major Embraces Leadership Of Pirate Marching Band

Student leaders emerge from many fields of study and play. In Sang Bui’s case, the senior traces his rise to leadership through the low brass section of the Perkins High School Marching Band. 

Sang this year leads the marching band as drum major for the PHS Marching Band. This weekend will be an exceptionally busy one for the band. 

On Friday, November 3, Sang will lead the band in its final home performance for the 2023 football season at Firelands Health Stadium at PHS when the football team hosts St. Marys Memorial High School. (If the Pirates win, the team – and band – will play on the road at neutral sites.)

The next evening, at 7 p.m. Saturday, he will lead the band in the State Marching Band Finals at Medina High School. He’s not surprised this year’s marching band made it to the state finals.

“When I saw the band perform (at the state-qualifying show) in Copley, I knew that, ‘yeah, we’re going to qualify for state,’” Sang says. “These students are very talented.”

From the podium, the drum major has perhaps the best view of the band and its performance. He says he has been consistently impressed with the hard work and dedication the PHS marching band has shown this season. 

“They have exceeded my expectations,” Sang says. “We entered the year after not qualifying for state last year. It’s amazing to see these students perform.”

Sang has been a four-year member of the marching band and plays trombone. He talks of being a drum major as not so much an honor gifted to him, but rather as a responsibility entrusted to him.

“It’s more than just being up in front of the band,” Sang says of being drum major. “It’s about leadership and being a role model for other students.” 

Indeed, he has been that, says PHS junior and band member Cadence Bryant. 

“He is always really encouraging and always has positive things to say,” says Cadence, a member of the clarinet section. “And, he hangs out with the clarinets and saxophones, so he’s cool in my book.”

Sang was selected as drum major by band director Chris Zanella and assistant band director Jacqueline Schroeder.  

“Sang is one of the most talented students and strongest leaders,” says Mr. Zanella. “He takes his role very seriously, and brings energy and passion to each performance. His dedication to the band program over the years has led him to this important leadership position."

Ms. Schroeder agrees: “He has grown as a leader over the last year. He’s always willing to help and creates a positive atmosphere for everyone.”

Sang also is a member of the PHS Robotics Club, the pit orchestra for the musical, and pep band.

As he continues his senior year, he also is looking toward his future. Ideally, that’s at The Ohio State University, where he wants to study Food, Agricultural, and Biological Engineering. And, yes, he has his sights set on a place in The Best Damn Band In The Land.