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Nigel North

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Biography

Nigel North (born 5 June 1954) is an English lutenist and guitarist.

He studied guitar on a scholarship to the junior department of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (1964-70), taking up the lute in 1969, at the age of 15. He maintains he was more or less self-taught on the instrument. He went on to study at the Royal College of Music from 1971 to 1974: classical guitar with John Williams and Carlos Bonnel, viola da gamba with Francis Baines; lute (one term) with Diana Poulton, qualifying in 1974 with an A. R.C.M. diploma in lute performance. He completed his studies on the postgraduate course in Early Music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama 1975-1975 and with one month’s study with baroque lutenist Michael Schäffer in 1976.

Overlapping his student years, in 1975 he was appointed Professor of Lute at the Guildhall School for Music and Drama, a position he held until 1996. From 1993 to 1999 he was Professor of Historical Plucked Instruments at the Hochschule der Künste, Berlin, Germany. From January 1999 he has been Professor of Lute at the Early Music Institute, Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University and, from January 2005, has taught the lute at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, Holland.

His recording life began in the mid-1970s; while studying at music college, he played viol, cittern, rebec and violin as well as his more usual instruments, lute, theorbo, mandolin and baroque guitar on recordings with some of the English pioneers of early music of that time, such as David Munrow with The Early Music Consort and Alfred Deller with The Deller Consort.

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