Ms. Katie Binkley is the Director of Bands at Richland Middle School, where she has worked since 2019. Prior to her arrival in Birdville ISD, she taught for three years as an Assistant Director at Fossil Hill Middle School in Keller ISD. During her tenure in Keller, she led the Sub Non-Varsity Band to their first sweepstakes award at the UIL Concert and Sight Reading contest in over nine years, as well as several first division ratings at contests and festivals in the DFW area. She assisted and team taught daily with the Varsity and Non Varsity Bands who earned consistent Sweepstakes awards, and several Best In Class trophies.
Ms. Binkley holds her Bachelor's Degree from the University of Texas- Arlington in Arlington, Texas. While at UTA, she was a member of the Wind Symphony, Symphony Orchestra, Flute Choir, Jazz Combo, and served as Drum Major of the UTA Maverick Marching Band. Between rehearsals, studying and practice time, Ms. Binkley also volunteered her time to serving the band programs at UTA as a member of Tau Beta Sigma, Honorary Band Sorority. In May of 2022, Ms. Binkley currently graduated from the Meadows School of the Arts, Masters of Music Education program at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.
Outside of her career in public education, Ms. Binkley is currently serving as an Army Bands Person in the 36th Infantry Division Band of the Texas Army National Guard. She serves as the Principal Flautist and performs often in the Concert Band, Ceremonial Band, Jazz Band and Woodwind Quintet, The Lone Star Five.
Ms. Binkley would like to credit her success to her friends and mentors, Cindy Landsford, Darlene Janeski, Beau Henderson, Jeffrey Lightsey, Larry Schnitzer, and John Zastoupil.
Karl Krause is in his seventh year as Assistant Director of Bands at Richland Middle School. He received his Bachelors degree at Texas Tech University, a Performers Diploma at the Royal Northern College of Music, and a Masters of Music at University of North Texas. Before becoming a band director Mr. Krause taught private lessons full time in the McKinney, Allen, and Plano school districts and served as a musician with the US Navy Pacific Fleet Band stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and Navy Band New Orleans stationed at Naval Air Station JRB New Orleans.
At Richland Karl teaches all beginner brass classes as well as conducts the RMS Symphonic band which consistently earns first division ratings and several Best in Class awards at local DFW area contests and festivals. He also assists with all aspects of the varsity band which consistently earn first division ratings, best in class trophies and was third in Region 31 Honor Band contest.
While at North Texas Karl was trombone section manager and performed and recorded with the internationally acclaimed UNT Wind Symphony and Symphony Orchestra and can be heard on numerous GIA Publications, "Wind Works" and "Teaching Music Through Performance in Band" recordings.
Mr. Krause is also an active freelance trombone player having performed with the Dallas Wind Symphony, Imperial Brass, the Odysseus Chamber Orchestra and is trombonist with the Lone Star Wind Orchestra, and The Jordan Kahn Music Company Dallas's top luxury entertainment company. He has also performed with the Honolulu Symphony, Hawaii Opera Orchestra and Royal Hawaiian Band. He has also performed with Latin artist, Tony Succar, and has performed for Parker McCullum, Jerry Jones, and more!
Akira Robles currently serves as the Percussion Director at Birdville High School in Birdville ISD. Akira earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Percussion Performance and Literature at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign under the tutelage of William Moersch and Ricardo Flores.
Akira experienced a wide range of performance opportunities and styles while at Illinois, including bands, orchestras, marching ensembles, steel band, and gamelan. He also toured the Miami, Florida and Dallas/Ft. Worth areas, giving performances and masterclasses on concert/rudimental snare drumming. After graduating, he served as a teacher, performer, percussion arranger, and sound designer in the Chicagoland area, working with several schools in the city and surrounding suburbs. In 2016 he moved to the DFW area, serving as Percussion Director of Ryan High School in Denton, TX until 2021.
Akira has been heavily involved in the marching percussion activity since 2003. He has performed with the Pioneer Drum and Bugle Corps (2003-2005) and the Phantom Regiment (2006-2007) as a bass drummer, as well as the 2008 WGI World Champion Rhythm X. As an educator, Akira has worked with a variety of groups, most recently being on staff at the Santa Clara Vanguard since 2011, under the direction of Paul Rennick. During his involvement with drum corps, Akira has been a part of seven Fred Sanford award winning percussion ensembles.
Akira is an educational artist with Pearl/Adams, Innovative Percussion, Remo, and Zildjian.
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