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Liuto forte in g (Alto Lute)

Tuning: D (or F) G c f a d‘ g‘

Tuning: D F G c f a d‘ g‘

Tuning: D E F G c f a d‘ g‘

Tuning: C D E F G c f a d‘ g‘

String-Length from 59 cm (a = 440 Hz) to 62 cm (a = 415 Hz)
Fixed frets (tied-on if desired)
Single stringing (double courses if desired)

Guitarists who wish to perform the great works of John Dowland and his contemporalies on their instrument are normally confronted with several problems. The need to tune the third string down to F sharp is the very least of them. The particular character of the modern guitar, romantic and rather dark, is no more suited to a convincing rendition of the filigree polyphonic texture than are the more obviously oversize string length and the limitation to six strings.

The instruments on which the major part of solo renaissance lute repertoire was performed were alto lutes. They played the role within the family of lutes which the violin was soon to play in a string ensemble. The top string was tuned, with a string length between 56 and 60 cm, to g’ or a’. A considerable clarity in the descant register was unfortunately accompanied by lower strings which scarcely earn the name of basses and sound rather frail to today’s ears.

Using the new soundboard construction of the Liuto forte, it is now succeeded to provide alto lute, despite their short string length, with a sonorous, viable bass register that contrasts with their clear an brillianttreble effectively, and the traditional repertoire for this instrument is at a new depth.

Guitarists for whom the use of capo tasto on a larger lute – for example the liuto forte in e (Tenor Lute) – is a rather unattractive option, will be admirably served in the performance of this grand music by the smaller Liuto forte in g. Lutenists will especially appreciate a now fully-fledged bass registergives more expressiveness to the composition of Dowland and his contemporalies, and a small alto lute is anegualy footing accompanying instrument for the singer even in a large room. (see under News/Recent Recordings)

The Liuto forte in g is also available as an introductory model (Model A). Here we are responding to increasing demands for a Liuto forte at lower cost. Introductory models of course boast all the essential advantages of Liuto forte instruments. They receive the same care and handiwork as the model B and C classes. They merely differ externally in a less intricate rose pattern, a non-arched fingerboard and fingerboard markers of gold brass instead of precious stone. The lower price, however, is chiefly due to time saving in the subsequent fine tuning. This final sonic tuning is the main difference between an introductory instrument and the regular Liuto forte models.