York County musician honored by Navy


A sailor from York who's assigned to the U.S. Navy Band Southwest in San Diego has been honored as the band's Junior Sailor of the Quarter.

Musician 2nd Class Christopher Lang, a graduate of Central York High School, was given the honor for his superior performance and other achievements, according to a news release.

"The men and women of Navy Band Southwest are true Naval ambassadors for our Navy, and Petty Officer Christopher Lang represents the 'best of the best' of our talented sailors," said Lt. Jane Hoffman, who directs the Navy Band Southwest, in the release.

Musical family: Joining the program seemed an obvious choice for Lang, who had music instilled in him from a young age and felt a strong desire to serve his country, according to the news release.

"My whole family is musical," he said in the release. "My mom played organ, my dad played tuba, and I started out on piano and upright bass. I wanted to serve my country, so I picked up the euphonium knowing that there was an opening for it in the Navy band program."

Lang in 2007 joined the Navy as a trombonist and euphonium player and is a member of the band's marching and ceremonial units as well as the Navy band The Destroyers, as a pianist, guitarist and vocalist. He also plays trombone in the band's brass quintet.

Additionally, Lang serves as the travel coordinator and is an assistant command fitness leader for Navy Band Southwest.

As a man who wears many hats, Lang has had multiple opportunities to show off his talents. He keeps busy with several of Navy Band Southwest's ensembles, performing everything from classic marching band compositions to more modern hits from artists such as Bruno Mars.

"One of my greatest accomplishments has been the opportunity to fill in gaps on many instruments when we didn't have a player available for that specific instrument," Lang said in the news release.

The band: To be selected for the Navy's music program, Lang went through an audition process that involved showcasing his technique, musicality and versatility.

The group's primary responsibilities include offering musical tours within the band's seven-state territory and bringing Navy awareness to audiences through musical performances.

Many of the band's performing units each year go on concert tours throughout the southwest, allowing them to perform for audiences that don't normally have opportunities to see Navy ensembles.

Navy Band Southwest, which is composed of 45 members, is one of the Navy's oldest continuing musical organizations.

Now more than 80 years old, the group averages more than 600 performances a year.

— Reach Jessica Schladebeck at jschladebeck@yorkdispatch.com.