Michael Sander

In my workshop in Wiesloch near Heidelberg, I build guitars, lutes, and other stringed instruments to order. For me, the really interesting challenges are projects involving the creation of totally new instruments or evolution of existing ones, in close cooperation with musicians and sound artists. But I also carry out repairs and servicing as well as modifications to improve ease of play and sound. In addition, I sell selected instruments for everyday use (preferably from European producers) and am happy to help children, beginners and learners of all ages choose the right instrument for them. My focus is always on perfect ease of play, a well-balanced sound and tasteful design – a combination that ensures musical motivation and inspiration. I built my first guitar at the end of the 1990s, supervised by Gerold Karl Hannabach in his workshop in Bubenreuth. Other instruments followed soon and then, starting in 1999, a four-year course in musical instrument design and construction in Markneukirchen. It was here that I was introduced to Günter Mark, a lute and viol maker based in Bad Rodach, who inspired me to build historical lutes, which now account for a large part of my work. In 2003, I started working in Bernhard Deutz‘s Klangwerkstatt workshop in Berlin. The seven years I spent there opened up a whole new perspective in how I saw instrument building. What I learned there through building monochords, string instruments that can be played intuitively (such as the psaltery or lyre) and instruments such as “sound chairs” or “sound beds” had a long-lasting influence on my work. Working with tone wood, a living material, and shaping sound fascinate me. I thrive on working with musicians to devise simple yet effective solutions for their specific musical requirements.