The Koch theorbo (posts from Sept. 20 and April 19) was delivered earlier this month to the student baroque ensemble of Adlai Stevenson High School, located in a Chicago suburb. I believe it is important to promote Early Music particularly theorbo among young musicians so I was enthusiastic about being part of this project.
Much of my time the last few months has been taken up with repairs. I repair my own instruments and those by other makers that belong to my clients. Some of this work can be arranged in advance and I include it in my schedule. Others things arrive on short notice with tight deadlines. The owner of the first lute I want to show you contacted me in April. I was told it was from 1975 so I was looking forward to seeing it when it arrived last month.
The action had gotten far too high so I dis-assembled it and put it back together in proper alignment.
I like re-visiting my earlier work, not to see what I've done, not to be critical, but to see the story that belongs to each instrument. The bowl wood is Brazilian Rosewood. I found a plank of it at a neighbourhood lumber yard in East End Montreal around 1972 when I was living there. Wondering where there might be more I was sent to a warehouse in the suburbs. I found an aircraft hanger size building crammed floor to ceiling with the wood! The species is endangered and is now banned in international trade.
|after Benedid 1783, Schreiner 2003|
Last month a lutenist who had recently moved to Ontario from Italy got in touch. The movers had damaged his archlute and he has a show scheduled for the middle of November.
I still have two lutes waiting for my attention.
|I have inserted knives to demonstrate the open joints|
|after Gerle, Schreiner 1996|
The rose is damaged but the broken parts will glue back without much trouble and the bridge is intact. The soundboard is a write-off. I'll salvage the rose and set it into a new soundboard.
Next, I will finish the Checchucci guitar and in the coming months I'll finally get to work on new lutes; a couple of ten courses lutes, another Koch theorbo and a baroque guitar in A. That is the plan anyway.