About Michael Schutz

Michael Schutz is Professor of Music Cognition/Percussion at McMaster University, where he directs the MAPLE Lab researching Music, Acoustics, Perception & LEarning. Over the past two decades, he has been at the forefront of scientific research on percussion, with findings featured in multiple textbooks and discussed widely in popular media. Beyond his research’s implications for percussion, it has sparked an ongoing collaboration with doctors to improve alarm sounds in medical devices by modeling percussive sounds. His TEDx talk Death by Beep? outlines shortcomings of current approaches, which have been implicated in hundreds of patient deaths (www.maplelab.net/ted).

Professor Schutz’s commitment to blending percussion research and performance led to his co-founding of the Canadian Percussion Network (CPN) with McGill Professor of Percussion Fabrice Marandola in 2020. After two years of virtual programming to assist with percussion education during the pandemic, they obtained $25,000 grant to host The Space Between, bringing together percussionists from across North America. In recognition of his success bridging music performance and research he received the prestigious 2019 Alumni Award from the Penn State School of Music, as well as McMaster’s designation of University Scholar.

Prior to McMaster, Schutz served as Director of Percussion Studies at Longwood University (Virginia), where he performed frequently with the Roanoke and Lynchburg Symphonies and was principal percussionist with Opera-on-the-James. He holds degrees in percussion from Penn State (BMA) as well as Northwestern University (MM) where he studied with Michael Burritt. Scientific honors include the Petro Canada Young Innovator Award, the Ontario Early Researcher Award, and induction as a Fellow of the Psychonomics Society. Artistically, he appears on the title track of acclaimed composer Judith Shatin’s Time to Burn (Innova), continues to serve on percussion faculty at the Honors Music Institute, and is an artist/endorser for Innovative Percussion and Sabian cymbals.