Some of today’s most accomplished Luthiers started right here…
"The Galloup School of Lutherie is much more than a trade school; it’s truly an empire where you can live and breathe guitar building, and it’s an experience that changed me forever."
As a student, Bryan and his team helped me build the foundation and vision for my career, and in the years since, they’ve continued to support and encourage me as I grew into a professional guitar builder. The magnitude of what an amazing opportunity and resource this is only continues to reveal itself over time, and I would not be where I am today if I hadn’t began my journey into the world of guitar building at the Galloup School of Lutherie.
-Maegen Wells Guitars & Mandolins
Attending the Galloup School of Lutherie was the best decision I have made. The full immersion format and free student housing provided me with the opportunity to focus all of my time and energy on learning the skills I needed to pursue a career in Lutherie. The school shop is world class and the amazing instructors create an encouraging learning environment where everyone will be successful, regardless of experience level. I had a wonderful time in Big Rapids and left with a solid foundation to build on as well as memories I will cherish for the rest of my life.
-Tyler Wells, LHT Guitars
I want to thank you and the rest of the staff for what was without a doubt the greatest experience of my life. With me having little to no experience with power tools, you have assisted me to gain a great deal of confidence. I have gone from the mindset of “I wonder if I can really pull this off?” to “I can do this without a doubt!”. I am now confidently following the path of my passion for maintenance and repair, with even some thought of doing a little building sometime in the future. I definitely made the correct choice in schools, and I am very proud to be one of your graduates!
I also want to mention how amazing Russ is as an instructor, he definitely has the patience of a saint, and his technique of knowledge transfer is wonderful. He definitely knows his stuff, and was also well assisted by Justin. Justin’s knowledge and enthusiasm were very effective in making an “old dog learn new tricks.” All of the apprentices provided great assistance, too.
Thanks again for such a wonderful experience! You are definitely the best!
P.S. Could I possibly get a copy of the class picture, I would love to get it framed and hang it next to my certificate.
- Paul Willett
I am writing this email to thank you and all the staff at the Galloup School for what what was an unforgettable experience for me. The professionalism and friendship extended to me whilst I was in the USA was beyond my wildest expectations. As I told you, Bryan, on more than one occasion, that when you come from the other side of the world you really don’t know what to expect and the best /worst scenarios go through your mind on a regular basis prior to arriving at the school. I can only say from my point of view everything exceeded my wildest expectations, from the professionalism shown by the teaching/instructing staff to the friendships forged whilst I was a student at the Galloup school – and the wonderful accommodations. In fact, it was an experience I will never forget for the rest of my life – and not forgetting the great guitars I have brought back to Australia. I learned so much whilst I was attending the school and I will carry these experiences with me forever, even the more challenging moments were very rewarding as these are the blocks by which our will to succeed and our character are built. I would also like to thank you, Susan, for all the help you gave me whilst I was in Big Rapids, yours and Bryans help and friendship is something I will never forget. I cannot finish this email without mentioning the wonderful teaching staff in person, Russell Olmsted is an exceptional teacher and luthier and friend. Thank you, Russ!! Many thanks also to my good friends and mentors Travis and Frank, I don’t know what I’d have done without your help. And of course you Bryan, for firstly starting this wonderful school, and for making yourself available to the students.
- Andrew Highley
Just wanted to let you know that things are working out great at First Act. They’ve really put my schooling to the test and have me scuff-sanding sprayed guitars, scraping binding, doing fret dresses and fret jobs, copy-carving necks, and everything that goes along with getting necks ready for glue-up to bodies.
I’m going to start prototyping some carved tops and backs for one of our Limited Edition guitars. I got that job thanks in part to the archtop I built at your school. Thank you again for helping me land this job. I truly appreciate it.
- Christopher Moncada, First Act Guitars
My thanks to Bryan Galloup and his staff for their help in my entrance to the world of Lutherie. The staff’s abundant knowledge of Lutherie and style of teaching made the foundation and process of guitar building easy and fun to learn. Besides guitar building, the shop also teaches a wealth of other things either directly or indirectly such as responsibility, good work ethics, cleanliness in the shop and at home, good tool habits like technique and maintenance, customer relations, and how to work with other people.
Another plus of going to Galloup School of Lutherie is the immediate start of your career coming straight out of the School. Bryan is very good at reading people and recognizing their strong and weak points such as behavior, personality, and work ethic. Bryan is able to take what he sees in a person and match them up with a job that perfectly suits them.
I was set up with an excellent apprenticeship under Ervin Somogyi. Ervin is the man and I’m learning tons about Lutherie and life through him. This apprenticeship is definitely the start of an exciting career and the beginning to a whole new life. Thank you Bryan Galloup.
- Chris Morimoto
After spending a lifetime with a guitar in my hands, I thought I knew just about everything in regards to them. Boy was I wrong, and my 8 weeks at the Galloup School proved it. I left there with new-found knowledge over two years ago that I am still not even close to using/digesting. Bryan’s course has left me utterly fearless in tackling guitar problems and repairs that I never would have dreamed of doing before getting my 8 week Journeyman’s certificate. In my case it is one of the best investments I have ever made. I wish I could invest the extra time to get a Masters certificate. I should have done this when I was 20. I am now currently building a business around this knowledge!
- Dan Murphy
After completing Bryan’s school, I have the skills and confidence to handle most any guitar repair that I’ll be faced with when I’m on the road.
The Black Crowes, Counting Crows, The B-52′s, The Goo Goo Dolls, Echo & The Bunnymen, David Bowie, Peter Gabriel, The Tom Tom Club, and Bryan Ferry
- Doug Redler – Guitar Technician
The Master Program at the Galloup school not only gave me the skills and confidence to work in professional environment, but also directed me to a job the suited my needs perfectly. Bryan Galloup’s school gave me a great sense of the inner workings of a successful guitar shop. Bryan, a respected insider in the business, was able to match my skills with the needs of the company that I wanted to work for, and arranged my first meeting with my employer, Roger Sadowsky.
- Julian Gaffney
After graduating Bryan’s class the most notable thing was that I had total confidence to evaluate and move forward with any situation that came across my bench. After graduation Bryan used his connections in the business to line up an interview with the head of the Gibson custom shop in Nashville TN and the rest is history.
- Sean Nicholson, Gibson Custom Shop
"Nowhere else on the planet is so much research in the physics and construction of instruments being done at such a high level."
The landscape of modern lutherie has changed dramatically in the time since I attended the Galloup school back in 2006. At one point it was perfectly reasonable to teach yourself how to build instruments and possibly build a respectable career in lutherie. Going to a school was sort of an added bonus for those of us who chose that path. But today the level of competition and skill in the trade is overwhelming and it’s my belief that not getting a proper education in the craft would make building a sustainable career almost impossible. There are many fine schools that have turned out very competent luthiers but, in my view, the Ivy league of lutherie schools is the Galloup School of lutherie. Nowhere else on the planet is so much research in the physics and construction of instruments being done at such a high level. Bryan and his partners have looked at every little detail of a multitude of styles of stringed instruments and formulated an efficient and broad curriculum which gives students an incredible foundation to begin practicing in our trade. The knowledge and forethought of the curriculum is supported by a state-of-the-art shop designed to maximize the exposure of students to all aspects of lutherie and give them the tools they need to succeed and to learn safely. The atmosphere is immersive and fun and my time there represents one of the best periods of time in my life. I get emails and calls from all over the planet asking me if I accept apprentices or how I suggest people go about learning how to do what I do and I give them the same answer every time. Go to Galloup.
Stuart Day, Stuart Day Guitars
"The instructors and guest lecturers are world-class experts, and the facilities are state-of-the-art."
“Choosing to attend the Galloup School of Luthiery proved to be one of the best and most pivotal decisions in becoming a professional luthier. Even now, ten years later, I often refer back to the knowledge and skill-set gained through their excellent Master program.
The instructors and guest lecturers are world-class experts, and the facilities are state-of-the-art. Students at GSL learn not only to build great guitars, but also great relationships and friendships throughout the industry.
There could be no better choice for anyone considering a career in constructing or repairing fine guitars – if you’re ready to learn, Bryan Galloup and his staff will prepare you for success.”
Rameen John Shayegan
International Instrument Design Manager
C. F. Martin & Co., Inc.
"The foundation of my career."
"Bryan's quarter century at the forefront of guitar repair has earned him a legendary reputation within our industry. It is this encyclopedic knowledge of the guitar in its evolution, which has enabled him to become one of today's preeminent guitarmakers."
“We look to Bryan to provide the next generation of craftsmen.”
"We have tremendous respect for Bryan, his curriculum, and the students that graduate from his program. We often look to him to provide us with the next generation of American craftsmen."
- Bob Benedetto, Benedetto Guitars
“There is a true Galloup footprint in my shop. A note of appreciation for the training and discipline Bryan has provided for his students, I have had the best experience with his alumni."
“I couldn’t be prouder of what he’s accomplished. If you start with talent, skilled hands and an artist's eye, then work very, very hard for years... and then work even harder, it’s possible to become a fantastic guitar maker, repairman, teacher, husband, father and innovator. That’s what Bryan Galloup has done since he worked in my shop in the early 80’s. I couldn’t be prouder of what he’s accomplished, and he is a special friend."
“Bryan expects the same high standards from his students as he does from himself. Besides being an amazing guitar builder, Bryan Galloup also has built one of the best guitarmaking teaching facilities in the world. If you want to be the best, learn from the best. Bryan expects the same high standards from his students as he does from himself. His pursuit of excellence is relentless and inspiring.
What I also love about Bryan is his curiosity to explore and understand how the acoustics of instruments really work. It’s a complex journey and Bryan has made huge strides in this department and very generously shared his journey in an open and understandable way. You cannot help but learn and be inspired being around him. AND….on top of all this, Bryan Galloup is one of my favourite people on the planet."
“The Galloup School has the right program to learn the art of lutherie. From the novice who wants some insight on repairing and building stringed instruments, to the established luthier or repair shop that would like to expand upon their skills, the Galloup School has the right program to learn the art of lutherie. Bryan and Susan have developed a demanding curriculum that prepares the graduating student for immediate employment. Their staff is a group of professionals who work in the industry and bring these experiences to Galloup’s state-of-the-art repair/manufacturing facility. I would highly recommend the Galloup School to anyone wanting to learn about lutherie, from the traditional methods to new applications that have become industry standards (many of these new techniques were developed by Bryan himself). Bryan’s open mind on new techniques and attention to detail made Galloup School our first choice as a training facility for our tuning system.
I went to Galloup to set them up as a BFTS training center, but came back learning so much from Bryan, Susan, Russ, and Sam; both in lutherie and business. We are happy to have Galloup Guitars working with us as a retrofitter, manufacturer, and training facility for the Buzz Feiten Tuning System."
“I was 17 years old and wet behind the ears when I went to Michigan to study with Bryan in his Journeyman’s Program. His knowledge of the guitar is second to none, but what is MOST commendable is his ability to teach, encourage and inspire. I learned as much about how Bryan ran his business as I did about building and repairing. My confidence level was boosted and I was- incredibly- even more passionate and excited about working in the guitar industry than I was when I arrived.
Bryan’s small class sizes and intimate setting are a critical part of his personal delivery style. When I left Michigan, I went home to Canada and started my own small business building and repairing guitars at the age of 19. It was 400 sq. ft. and I was busier than I thought I would be. Later, my growing experience led me to an idea that I later patented called the Griffiths Active Bracing System. I started Garrison Guitars to commercialize the technology and this year we’ll ship 24,000 acoustic guitars to 34 different countries.
If you want above-average results, you need an above-average teacher. Bryan is that and more. I congratulate you on your wisdom in choosing Galloup Guitars as your place of study. There is no comparison."
"I periodically field inquiries about apprenticeship...and on that note:
In the last 18 years, I've trained a fair number of people in various aspects of guitar building, wiring, assembly and setup.
Several of these folks came from guitar building schools, and they sometimes weren't quite as easy to train - they already had ideas about "how it's done", which didn't always fit in with the workflow of our shop.
So - if you seek to apprentice with anyone, my advice is: don't show them what you know. Instead, demonstrate your capacity to learn what you *don't* know...and, equally - unlearn as necessary.
However: The consistent exception to this rule were graduates of the Galloup School in Michigan. Bryan Galloup's students were notably open-minded and ready to learn, and had just the right attitude - which counts for everything in my opinion.
Bryan, Sam Guidry and his crew are running a great program, and the evidence can be seen in the quality of the luthiers who started out in their program - Maegen Wells, Tyler Robbins, Isaac Jang, just to name a few. Whatever they're doing, it's working.
For anyone who wants to pursue guitar building, whether as a career or a hobby, Bryan's program gets my vote as a great place to start."
"Bryan taught me what excellent repair work should be, while providing clear procedures to correctly repair guitars. Bryan also gave me the ability to spot and analyze previous repairs. The skills I acquired at The Galloup School (Bryan Galloup's Guitar hospital back then in 1991) have proven foundational in the success of my guitar shop Action Music for the last 22 years."
“The Galloup School of Lutherie has an amazing program and we are very proud to be part of this amazing school. The quality of the students and training they received has helped them transition into the working environment with full knowledge on building instruments. Here at Collings Guitars, Inc. we take great pride in the quality of our instruments and our craftsman that build them."
"We greatly appreciate the training Bryan gives to beginning luthiers. One of his grads, Will Bezard, is now our shop foreman and has been instrumental in helping us to reach our production goals. We would not hesitate to consider any Galloup grad for a position here."