James Rees

Mr. Rees serves as the Lead Assistant for the Lake Highlands Bands.  He joined the Lake Highlands staff in 2012.  Prior to his appointment he was the Associate Director at Evans Middle School in McKinney, TX.  He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education and a Bachelor’s degree in Music Performance, both cum laude from Texas Tech University. He also holds a Master’s degree in Music Education from Southern Methodist University.

Mr. Rees’s duties include directing the Symphonic Band, coordinating the private lesson program, assisting with the marching band, conducting the high school musical, assisting with the Wind Ensemble, assisting the junior high bands, and teaching various beginner classes in the Lake Highlands cluster.

Mr. Rees grew up in Midland, TX and attended Lee High School. He joined band at the suggestion of his friends in the 10th grade. Though he had never played an instrument before and could not read music, he loved music and band immediately. He was selected to the all-region band as a junior, was a member of the 5A all-state band, and served as Band Captain his senior year.

After high school, Mr. Rees attended Texas Tech on a music and academic scholarship. During his time at Texas Tech he was principal tuba in the Texas Tech Wind Ensemble, the Texas Tech Symphony Orchestra, Las Vegas Summer Music Festival, Hot Springs Music Festival and Sewanee Music Festival. He performed at the International Tuba and Euphonium Conference in Denver, Colorado and was appointed principal tuba of the Amarillo Symphony Orchestra when he was 19 years old, making him the youngest member of the orchestra.

Upon graduation, Mr. Rees became the associate director of bands at Evans Middle School in McKinney, TX. At Evans he taught beginner brass and woodwind classes, directed the second, third and fourth bands, and assisted with the first band. These bands, under Mr. Rees’s direction, consistently received sweepstakes awards and best in class recognition. During his tenure the band program grew to 415 students and received many honors and recognitions.  While at Evans he began his graduate studies at SMU.

During his tenure at Lake Highlands High School his bands have received exclusively superior ratings at UIL concert and sight reading contests.  Those bands have also been named best in class at the Director’s Choice and South Coast music festivals.  Under his direction the musicals ‘Kiss Me, Kate’ and ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ were nominated for outstanding orchestra in the Dallas Summer Musical’s High School Theatre Awards.  Mr. Rees was named ‘Wildcat of the Month’ in May of 2016, has been featured in the Lake Highlands Advocate, and is a Richardson ISD Mentor Teacher.

Mr. Rees lives in Allen, Texas with his wife Sarah.  He enjoys spending time with family and friends, going to sporting events, and traveling whenever possible.