New Director of Bands stands ready to step into Rock Hill position

JP Wilson was hired only a few months ago as the first ever Director of Bands at the new Rock Hill High School.

JP Wilson was hired only a few months ago as the first ever Director of Bands at the new Rock Hill High School. "I was not expecting to get the position," Wilson said. "I know there were over 100 very qualified candidates, so it would be tough, but I was confident that I could be a top contender for the position."

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JP Wilson once thought that he wanted to be an accountant. But he traded numbers for notes, and became a music educator instead. Now, he will serve as the first Rock Hill High School Director of Bands.

“I was actually going to go to UCONN (University of Connecticut) for accounting, Wilson said. “My mentor told me that he knew I would be a fantastic (music) educator and that I should really try it. I am happy that I picked music!

Brandon Holt, the Director of Bands at Prosper High School, is happy, too. Only a few months ago, he hired Wilson as the Director of Bands for the new Rock Hill High School.

“We were looking for a band director that has extensive experience teaching band at a very high level and who had a true heart for teaching students,” Holt said. “I love Mr. Wilson’s love for students. He has a huge heart and passion for teaching that is infectious.

Before landing his new job, Wilson was a band director at Legacy High School in Mansfield, and most recently at Hebron High School in Carrollton.

“I was very excited when I was notified (that I got the job). It was definitely bittersweet though,” Wilson said. “As educators, leaving students is one of the hardest things we do. In the band world, we spend so much time with our students, and we really watch them grow and mature from sixth grade to 12th grade. It is a really special thing, so leaving is always hard.  There were lots of tears when I told my students, and I had to try hard to fight back the waterworks myself.”

Although Wilson’s current students will miss him, his new students said they couldn’t be more thrilled.

I love Mr. Wilson’s love for students. He has a huge heart and passion for teaching that is infectious.”

— Brandon Holt

“I’m super excited to work with Mr. Wilson,” sophomore Isabella Trevino, a flute player who will be in the Rock Hill High School band, said. “I think he has some cool experiences and will really do a good job building up the new program.”

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, both Wilson and Holt are anticipating the upcoming school year.

“My biggest plan for this year is for the students to define who and what it is to be a part of the Rock Hill High School band,” Wilson said. “This first class of students has a unique opportunity to decide who we are going forward and lay the foundation for future Blue Hawk Band members. Success will be defined as going out and accomplishing the goals we set as an organization in preparing for the future.”

Holt was a little more secretive about his plans.

“It will be great!” he said.

While one would think that the Prosper High School and Rock Hill High School bands will compete against each other, that’s not the case.

“Rock Hill will be 5A, and PHS will remain 6A,” Holt said. “PHS will be larger.”

Regardless of the size of the school, Wilson said he looks forward to this latest chapter of his career.

“Honestly, I have all the emotions right now,” Wilson said.  “This new venture as a head director, and a brand new school, has me so excited. I can’t hold it in, but at the same time, it’s terrifying.  However, as humankind, every new endeavor that we have braved has been faced with both fear and excitement.  It is part of being human, and that’s why we continue to push ourselves to be better in all aspects of our lives.”