BUHLER, Kan. (KSNW) — Each year, many of the nation’s best high school and collegiate marching bands are invited to represent their school or state in the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. One of them, the Macy’s Great American Marching Band, features 200 of the most talented high school musicians from all 50 states.
This year, a tuba player from Buhler High School (BHS) will represent Kansas.
The BHS symphonic band is like any other in that the brass section is the loudest. That’s just the way it is.
At Buhler, the biggest brass belongs to senior Bryan Regier, who blows a mean tuba.
“The tuba’s kind of a powerhouse with the baseline. Last year we had three tubas. This year, we have six. We easily could overpower the band if we wanted to,” said Regier.
“Byran’s an amazing tuba player. He’s a great leader within our band program,” said Nathan Biggs, BHS director of bands.
In addition to playing tuba, Regier played offensive line all four years for the BHS Crusaders’ football team. He’s also a member of Buhler’s track & field team.
Regier has played tuba since sixth grade. He serves in a leadership role in the band. He’s a member of the District Honor Band.
Now, the accomplished senior is taking his skills to the national level. Saturday, Regier is traveling to New York City, where he will join the Great American Marching Band and perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
“It’s absolutely amazing. I’m excited, but as time’s gone on, all these people I don’t even know started congratulating me in town, from school. I thought, ‘This is really cool.’ Representing a small town like Buhler is a huge thing in a New York band. It’s a huge honor. So, I’m happy I can do that for Buhler,” said Regier.
“I think it’s an amazing opportunity for any student to be selected for a national performance opportunity such as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade,” said Biggs. “He kind of puts Buhler on the map and represents our program, our community, and our school at the highest level.”
Regier auditioned back in the spring. His mother recorded him performing with his sousaphone on the BHS football field and submitted his tape. Two months later, Regier received the good news that he was selected for the elite marching band.
Regier will march the two-and-a-half-mile parade route beginning in Central Park West, turning at Columbus Circle to 6th Avenue, and making its final turn and stop at Macy’s Herald Square. He says he’s excited to meet the other tuba players from across the country.
“Here at Buhler High, the tuba section has a huge bond together. And tuba players have this thing where they like to meet up. We get together. When we meet up, it’s like we’ve known each other for the last 10 years already,” said Regier. “Tuba players have that bond no matter where they’re from.”
Regier says his parents and grandparents are going along for the weeklong trip.
“A bit of Kansas folk going to the biggest time of the year in New York. Ought to be interesting,” said Regier.
Regier’s band director, Nathan Biggs, is proud to have one of his students representing the Buhler Crusaders in one of America’s greatest traditions.
“I will definitely be looking for him. Luckily, he plays the tuba, so he’s going to be a little bit easier to spot on the TV,” said Biggs.
“It’s a huge honor. I’m just getting more and more excited about it,” added Regier.
The 2022 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade begins at 8 a.m. CT on NBC!