Kyle Ballantine grew up in rural Ohio in the Presbyterian Church where his grandmother directed the children’s choir. He began playing piano for worship in middle school and began studying organ in high school.
He graduated cum laude from Muskingum University with a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education with an emphasis in Organ. He worked as a middle school Choral Music Teacher before earning a Master of Music in Organ Performance at the prestigious Cleveland Institute of Music.
Kyle’s work in music ministry has included roles in the Presbyterian and UCC churches. For the past six years, he has served as Director of Music and Administration at First Baptist Church, Savannah, GA, where he: directs and rehearses the adult choir, children’s choir, and bell choir; provides organ accompaniment for all services; and conducts the choirs from the keyboard during worship. Kyle is passionate about partnering with the ministerial staff to plan meaningful worship experiences that integrate anthems and hymnody that align with the lectionary and message in a wide variety of musical styles.
Per one of his references, “Kyle had a tough act to follow at FBC, Savannah. His two immediate predecessors had served the congregation for more than 80 years. Kyle managed to win over the support of the choir as well as his predecessor, who remains a member of the congregation in retirement. Kyle was able to recruit new persons to participate in the choirs by involving new members, creating a new children’s choir, and inaugurating a Choral Scholars program drawing upon the expertise of undergraduate music students at a local university.”
Kyle and his partner, John Pollock, have been together for the past 12 years. John is an elementary music and theatre teacher who majored in Music Education with an emphasis in Voice. Their shared interests include cooking, attending live music and theatre performances, drinking coffee, reading, and finding new shows to watch on Netflix. They are cat people and have two cats: Ellie and Milo.
Kyle welcomes the opportunity to lead a vibrant music program in a progressive faith community that boldly and joyfully takes action to support inclusion and social justice.