Interview with Lutenist Hopkinson Smith

Lutenist Hopkinson Smith playing baroque guitar.(Photo: Dan Merlo)
Lutenist Hopkinson Smith playing baroque guitar.(Photo: Dan Merlo)

Lutenist Hopkinson Smith traveled all the way from Switzerland to Mees Hall on the Capital University campus last weekend for a masterclass and program of Spanish music for baroque guitar.

Columbus was the first stop on Smith’s U.S. tour and he took time out of his busy schedule to do an interview with Classical 101′s Boyce Lancaster.

During his childhood Smith played many different instruments (horn, saxophone, trumpet, classical guitar), but it wasn’t until he began playing the lute that he found his “voice.”

Smith says he is most dedicated to reviving Renaissance and Baroque repertoire: “That is the moment of truth in a way for a musician when you’re there with the instrument and can create something of the magic that these earlier repertoires intrinsically had.”

During Part 2 of the interview, Smith describes the differences between the lute, the baroque guitar (which he will be playing during his tour) and the modern day guitar.

He says the baroque guitar is much more like the lute because it’s much lighter and has a more delicate sound. “It’s a whole other aesthetic,” Smith explains.

In the Part 3 of the interview, Smith talks about music making as a form of meditation, and how the lute lends itself to that notion perfectly. “[The lute] seems to be a natural extension of [an artist's] musicality.”

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