Hello readers. I’m delighted to welcome musician Lyle Stutzman to October’s Made to Create interview.
Sheri Yutzy: Hi Lyle, welcome to Made to Create!
Lyle Stutzman: Hi, Sheri. Thanks for the invitation.
SY: You have a vision to make choral music accessible for the normal listener. Have you always found choral music enjoyable?
LS: Yes, I have loved it for as long as I can remember. As a child, I listened to Handel’s Messiah and the Kansas Mennonite Men’s Chorus and the Rosedale Chorale and the Hartville Singers and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and loved them all.
SY: What do you dream of doing with Blue Sky Music in ten years?
LS: Ten years? Dream? I’m still trying to figure out what to do in ten days. But that’s a great question. I would love if in ten years Blue Sky Music would have something for everyone—sheet music (print and digital), mp3s of all kinds of great music (and maybe CDs if they’re still in use), articles and other resources for music teachers, downloadable resources, instructional and inspirational videos, and other practical and inspirational products to encourage and equip people to sing and to help others learn to sing.
SY: What’s the best advice you’ve received from another composer?
LS: Hmm. I can’t really think of a specific piece of advice although I’m sure I’ve received some really good advice. If another composer told me to keep it singable, I would say that’s the best advice I’ve received.
SY: What’s your favorite feedback you’ve received about one of your pieces?
LS: “My children play your song at least a dozen times a week and raise their hands at just the right place each time.”
SY: What’s the hardest part about composing?
LS: Setting aside the necessary time to get it done. That sounds boring, I know, but it’s true.
SY: What have you learned about God through composing or conducting music?
LS: Oh, boy. Great question. I have learned that God cares deeply about what He designed us to do, and He loves to equip us and help us walk in our design. He is the Master of helping us grow into a place where He can use what He placed in us, and He doesn’t waste pain in that process. Instead, He uses it to create beauty. He is an amazing Father!
SY: Thank you so much for joining us! I wish you all the best in your endeavor to make choral music accessible.
LS: You’re welcome. It was my pleasure.
Thank you for stopping in today! Be sure to check out Lyle’s listening page for some free music.
Although much of his time is spent doing music in various forms, Lyle enjoys cooking, an occasional basketball game with his students, and spending time with his wife. Lyle continues to arrange and compose choral works, including commissioned pieces for various choirs. He started the Daviess County Community Chorus and teaches music during summer terms at Faith Builders Educational Programs. He teaches Music Fundamentals, Music Theory I, Class Voice, Hymn Appreciation, Congregational Songleading, and choir at EBI. Lyle feels called to lead the people of God in worship, and he is gifted in making quality music doable and enjoyable for ordinary people who have little or no training in music. Connect with Lyle and his music at blueskymusic.net or on Facebook.