FLORENCE, S.C. – Lute and guitar player Allen Johnson will be featured at Francis Marion University’s First Tuesday Arts Event, Oct. 14.
The performance will begin at 8 p.m. in the Hyman Fine Arts Center’s Kassab Hall. Admission to the concert is free and open to the public. Guest flautist Laura Greenway will also perform.
Johnson is a native of Columbia and has been involved in music since an early age. At the University of South Carolina, he studied voice and clarinet, and began to pay close attention to classical guitar players. He was a member of the USC Concert Choir under the direction of Arpad Daraz. This choir toured Europe and took first place in the folk and contemporary categories in the Bela Bartok International Choir Competition in Debrecen, Hungary in 1976.
Johnson was also a member of the USC Collegium Musicum, which was an ensemble devoted to the performance of “early music,” primarily of the Renaissance and Medieval periods. He played recorders, crumhorn, cornamuse, rackett, shawm and cornetto with this group, and was associated with lute, viol and guitar players. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in music history in 1977.
Since coming to Florence in 1983 to open a branch of Parker Music Co., Johnson has been very involved in the local music scene. He has performed with the Florence Little Theater pit orchestra, the Master Works Choir, at numerous school and civic events, at Madrigal dinners at South Florence High School and Coker College, and at many weddings.
He has served as an adjunct professor at Coker College and has played violin in the Florence Symphony Orchestra for a number of years. He is a past board member of the Florence Area Arts Alliance and presented a lecture to the Pee Dee Heritage Center on “Music in the Pee Dee,” which was sponsored in part by FMU.
Johnson taught the strings program at Wilson High and Williams Middle School for the past three years, but has now decided to concentrate on private lessons and performing.
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