Michael Leopold was born in 1971 near San Francisco, California. While studying under the guidance of Craig Russell at Cal Poly University, he was awarded the ‘Ron Radcliff Outstanding Music Student’ in 1995. While pursuing a Masters of Music Degree in historical plucked instruments, Michael studied under Richard Savino at Sacramento State University. Following graduation in 1998 he moved to Milan, Italy to study lute and theorbo at L’Istituto di Musica Antica of the Accademia Internazionale della Musica(formerly the Civica Scuola di Musica) with Paul Beier. During his studies he participated in courses and master classes with Hopkinson Smith, Paul O’Dette and Jacob Lindberg. He also studied with Mara Galassi, Lorenzo Ghielmi and Eguardo Egüezprior to the completion of his degree in 2004. Michael has performed both as a soloist and as an accompanist in Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland, Norway, Japan and the United States. He has worked with various groups including Concerto Italiano (Rome), La Pietà de’Turchini (Naples), La Risonanza (Milan), Madrigalisti Ambrosiani (Milan), La Galeazescha (Milan), Galatea (Milan), and Anima Mundi (Tokyo). He has also collaborated with several orchestras and opera companies including Orchestra Verdi di Milano, Houston Grand Opera (USA), Glimmerglass Opera (USA), LA Baroque Orchestra (USA), and Santa Rosa Symphony (USA). Recording projects include Mottets by Alessandro Melani with Concerto Italiano of (Rome), ‘Historia di Jephte’ by Carissimi with Centro Italiano di Musica Antica(Rome), the 2003 Early Music America’s Naxos competition Grand Prize Winner recording session with Catacoustic(USA), and a recording of the music of Buonamente with Monica Hugget and Bruce Dickey.