Like many other makers of my generation I started building musical instruments on the kitchen table in the late 1970’s whilst studying at university. After finishing university I had the rare opportunity to pass a two-year apprenticeship as a guitar-maker between 1983 and 1985. After the examinations, I started working in the repair department of a specialized guitar shop – in fact, I was the repair department! Luckily these years kept me away from building guitars but brought a load of experiences with guitars of all kinds and categories and so shaped my own ideas about guitars.
In 1988, shortly after the Romanillos book about Antonio de Torres was published, I attended my first guitar-building course by José Romanillos. During this course another participant, Tobias Braun from Vienna, and I decided that we would like to translate the Torres book into German. The German edition was published in 1989, the same year that I passed my mastership examinations and I then opened my own workshop. Other courses with José Romanillos followed, and we became good friends. In 1996 and 1997 I assisted the guitar-making courses by Romanillos in Córdoba/Spain and since 2001 I assisted several of his courses, given by him and his son near his residential village of Guijosa in Spain.
Since my first meeting with Romanillos, I became more and more interested in the history of Spanish guitars and in the style of Hermann Hauser I and now, after 20 years, I still do not see an end to my research. Although I consider my work to be highly traditional, I try to keep myself open for contemporary developments in lutherie, but by now I have not come across any other style of classical guitar that convinces me more than the traditional style I follow.
I simply love the timeless beauty of the great classical guitar tone that we find in the deep fundamental sounding guitars by the great Spanish masters and the transparency and projection of guitars in Hauser´s style that also combine beautiful singing and “round” trebles with a deep full bass register. – That´s what I am looking for in my guitars. Gerhard Oldiges
At Kent Guitar Classics, we have been very fortunate in our collaboration with Gerhard Oldiges to have several fine guitars each year. Matthew MacAllister, a Scottish professional recitalist, was seeking a Hauser-style instrument and bought a fine Oldiges Hauser-style from us in 2008 with which he now performs and records.
From a more recent batch of three Hauser-style guitars, one was bought by the young Swedish virtuoso Johannes Möller. Another with Indian rosewood back and sides was bought by Julian Bream who found that the weight, feel, shape of the neck and string feel near-identical to the 1940 Hauser that has played for so many years as well as having a very good Hauser-style sound quality and balance. The third went to a very contented customer in the U.S.A.
We look forward to receiving the next guitars from Gerhard which will include, perhaps later in the year, one of his replicas of the famous Antonio de Torres guitar – ‘La Leona’ of which Gerhard has made several of these cypress-bodied guitars in recent years.
"I would love to go through the process of buying a good guitar from Miles at KGCL because he really knows his stuff. But actually, I make them and so enjoy seeing my guitars amongst such a very fine selection of extremely good instruments. I feel very honoured that they are presented at Kent Guitar Classics."
Gerhard Oldiges | Maker of fine classical guitars in the Hauser style.