Today we’d like to introduce you to Lori Sutherland.
Lori, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve always had a passion for music. I knew early on in high school that I wanted to major in music in college. Fortunately, my dad supported me in that endeavor (my mom had died from ovarian cancer in 1990), so I pursued a Bachelor of Music in Theory and Composition from Ohio State University (1997). After graduation, I took some time to decide which direction to go, which lead to obtaining my Master’s in Library Science, graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2005. During that time, I had gotten married and moved from Columbus, Ohio, to Crystal Lake, Illinois. I work at the Algonquin Area Public Library as a cataloger, pursuing musical opportunities in my spare time. I’m heavily involved in the local music community: playing and performing in several ensembles, running a clarinet choir, teaching private clarinet and piano lessons, and blogging. I’ve focused a lot of my time lately getting back into composing. The rise of self-publishing has certainly helped my career as a composer and arranger; my output has grown knowing that I have an outlet for sharing my music. I balance my life as best I can and continue to strive to make music an even bigger part of my life.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Most roads are not smooth; mine is no exception. There are opportunities I regret not taking in college and, looking back, I could have really benefited from a mentor, especially as one of the few women in my degree specialty. I lacked confidence in several areas of my life, which meant I held myself back when, perhaps, I should have taken a chance. While I’m proud of achieving my Master’s Degree, my time in school lead to music taking a back seat for a few years. I’m making up for that now.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Tonal Diversions Music – what should we know?
Like other musicians, I wear several hats. I’ve started bringing my different musical activities under one umbrella: Tonal Diversions Music. I see my mission as bringing music and people together. I compose and arrange music as a way of introducing pieces to different audiences (i.e. taking a piece originally written for orchestra and arranging it for clarinet choir; composing a piece for horn choir then rescoring it for concert band). I teach music as a way of broadening students’ knowledge and experiences. I perform as a way for audiences to hear new and different works. I blog as a way to show people that classical music isn’t scary.
I’m proud that I made the leap to turn Tonal Diversions Music into a DBA entity. It’s still very much a work in progress, but I continue to work toward building a respected, trusted, and welcoming name in music.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
I’m not giving up. I believe in my purpose and can’t imagine not doing it. It is challenging during the low periods, so I work on ways to get myself through those times.
- Website: tonaldiversions.com
- Phone: 815-404-9633
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TonalDiversions/
- Twitter: bclplyr
- Other: https://www.sheetmusicplus.com/publishers/Lori-Archer-Sutherland-sheet-music/3002176