Caden Helmer Takes Pride in Recent Success of The Golden Regiment

The Blue Springs High School Band, The Golden Regiment (GR), attended the Bands of America competition on October 22nd in St. Louis, Missouri.

Sophomore Caden Helmer, a saxophonist, describes the trip as one of the best experiences he has ever had. “It went great!” Helmer goes on to say.

This was Helmer’s first-ever band trip, and their success made it all the better. He enjoyed the ride on the charter bus, but the fun he had along the way and during the event drove his excitement.

During the competition, a huge audience attended all the performers play and compete. The stands were filled, according to Helmer, which gave him the confidence to do his best, especially after performing the previous year without spectators. 

Helmer has been in the band since 6th grade, as have most, but has always had a passion for the saxophone. He expresses his thoughts through the performing arts. Helmer participates in the choir, musical theatre, and various bands, including the jazz band. Band, however, Caden admits, is his favorite because of its flexibility. There are opportunities everywhere in band to become great, whether with different instruments or various positions. Helmer’s devotion to music, he hopes, will provide him with great opportunities within the field.  

Helmer also mentions that being a part of the band community really gives him a sense of belonging. During this trip to St, Louis, he spent most of his time with friends, which brought them closer. Helmer describes the connections he has made as being just like a family.

Caden also met several other musicians and professionals who had come to compete or spectate the event. Many of which, in fact, recognized Helmer as being the impressive saxophonist and complimented him on his accomplishments. One had even mentioned how he had seen one of Helmer’s performances online.

Overall, the Golden Regiment placed second, qualifying them in the top 14 to attend Grand Nationals, which takes place November 11-13. They beat nearly twenty other schools but were ranked just under Broken Arrow. Broken Arrow, a known rival and competitor of the GR, had a seemingly flawless performance. Helmer describes Broken Arrow’s performance as being “smooth and clean,” like they had practiced a hundred times before, and gives credit to their production, stating that they certainly deserved the win. 

The competition is scored out of 100 points; however, most bands don’t typically exceed a score of 90. With that in mind, it was impressive to hear that both the Golden Regiment and Broken Arrow have successfully broken a score of 90 points which is a great accomplishment. 

The GR has spent months training and preparing for this competition. Training began back in July starting with the music and memorization. Hours were spent each day playing and practicing the music alone. It wasn’t until mid-August that the band began learning the movements, visuals, and marching sequences. Coming into the last weeks before the competition, the band was finally able to put the two together and begin a full-scale rehearsal that took several hours to complete. 

The Golden Regiment spent countless hours putting their performance together. So the next time you see the GR on someone’s bag, be sure to congratulate them for all they have accomplished.