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Trends: 1985 Lute Society Seminar

Trends: 1985 Lute Society Seminar

by Lawrence D. Brown

Originally published in American Lutherie #3, 1985

The 1985 Lute Society Seminar in Oakland, Michigan, June 16-22, was attended by 50 students, 5 professional luthiers, 7 faculty, and 3 guest speakers. The students included serious amateurs, professional and semi-professional players, and rank beginners. They came from as far away as Japan, Europe, Canada, and England, providing a fascinating cross-section of players and instruments from around the world. Since many of those attending brought two or sometimes three instruments, a great many instrument makers were also represented.

For me, as a full-time builder of lutes and other early instruments, it represented an unparalleled opportunity to examine the quality of instruments currently being made by a great variety of makers, and to identify any trends in playing techniques (which can greatly effect the mechanics of a musical instrument).

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