Walter Verreydt was born in Lier in 1958. After his studies, he became a teacher in woodworking and technical drawing. The love for music was born into his family: his great-grandfather Gustave was a violinist and music teacher, his grandfather Arthur played the cello and the organ and his great-uncle, Edward Verreydt, was a pianist/organist well-known throughout the Interbellum as a composer of songs, choir music and piano music.
In 1985, Walter made his first classical guitar: as a music lover and woodworking teacher, it was a logical consequence that he found his passion in the construction of musical instruments. His love for the sound of the classical guitar drove him towards guitar making. From the very beginning, Walter has had the possibility to study some beautiful guitars of renowned guitar makers like Bouchet, Fleta, Hernandez-Aguado and others. He also had good contacts with eminent guitar makers like José Romanillos and Daniel Friederich. This formed a rich source of information for him. In Mittenwald, in the beginning of the nineties, during the selection of spruce, Walter met the German guitar maker Rolf Eichinger, which was the beginning of a long friendship. Rolf made Walter more familiar with the Spanish guitar making traditions and techniques during his many visits to Rolf’s workshop in Granada. These numerous influences have resulted in a very personal style.
In 1999, Walter Verreydt became 1st laureate at the ‘4th Mostra Concorso Internazionale di Chitarra Classica’ in Baveno (It). Since 1988, Walter teaches at the ‘Centrum voor Muziekinstrumentenbouw’ in Puurs (Belgium) www.cmbpuurs.be . Besides the necessary basic techniques, he tries to teach his students affinity for the guitar and for the craft. He has a special attention for the development of an efficient technique: the manual processing of the wood, the bending techniques, the design and the composition of the marquetry and the rosette, the correct use of traditional glues and gluing techniques… and of course the precise assembly of the different parts with attention for detail, for the correct inclination of the guitar’s neck and everything that is necessary for a well-functioning instrument. Apart from his own workshop, the courses are an equally important professional activity for Walter, because he sees the education of young guitar makers and the sharing and improving of knowledge as an important mission. With his students he is an active member of the Leonardo Guitar Research (LGR) Projectwww.leonardo-guitar-research.com, a project with focus on the use of sustainable non-tropical woods in acoustic guitar making.
Walter is one of the founders of the Cordefactum festival ( www.cordefactum.be ). On this biannual festival (since 2004), luthiers from different countries are invited and reunited around musical instruments and their construction. Within the context of the festival, different lectures, workshops, expositions and concerts are organized.
Walter Verreydt’s guitars are played among others by: Fernando Espi, Johan Fostier, Karim Baggili, Jan Depreter, Piera Dadomo, Paul Gregory, Andrea De Vitis.