The first international, fully integrated music centre for the higher education of strings launches in the historic Italian city famed for its violin heritage

  • The Stauffer Center for Strings has been established in Cremona,the world’s capital for violin making, to provide training and support to exceptionally talented young string musicians from around the world
  • The Center is the world’s first international music centre entirely dedicated to the higher education of strings, encompassing research, composition, production, management and innovation
  • The Center’s headquarters will be in the heart of Cremona, at Palazzo Stauffer (previously Palazzo Stradiotti), an iconic, seventeenth-century building that has undergone major restoration to become a high-tech, sustainable and entirely plastic-free multifunctional campus, enriched by an exclusive interior design project by the iconic Italian company Pininfarina
  • This ambitious, innovative cultural project and centre of international excellence provides a physical space for two current entities: The Stauffer Academy and the Stauffer Foundation. It draws on the experience of the Stauffer Academy, created 35 years ago, and is emerging half a century after the establishment of the Stauffer Foundation
  • The inauguration of the Center will take place on 1 October 2021 (International Music Day), with an Open Day event at Palazzo Stauffer, which will also be streamed
  • The Stauffer Center is one of the most advanced and innovative platforms for artistic cooperation at a global level. Its vision is to be a dynamic hub dedicated to supporting the artistic and professional growth of new generations of musicians
  • The Center also seeks to be an ideal meeting and sharing space for artists, teachers and students, where they can express their talent and creativity in full respect of cultural and gender diversity
  • World-class artists will work alongside the current renowned Masters of the Stauffer Academy: Salvatore Accardo (violin), Bruno Giuranna (viola), Antonio Meneses (cello), Franco Petracchi (double bass) and the Quartetto di Cremona
  • The Center will create partnerships with various music organisations, including some of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world
  • All of the programmes offered by the Center, including the courses run by the Stauffer Academy, are full scholarships, allowing musicians to attend free of charge to ensure accessibility from a diverse range of musicians internationally
  • Paolo Petrocelli, General Director of the new Center and the Stauffer Academy, said: “Excellence, internationality, innovation and sustainability: these are the guiding principles on which we founded the Stauffer Center. From the great tradition of the Italian music school, of which Accademia Stauffer is the custodian, comes a cultural project open to the world, in connection with the present and projected into the future, designed to gather the best energy, skills and professionalism of the world music community, to support the younger generations. On the strength of our history and identity, we want to promote a new artistic vision that is increasingly participatory and inclusive. We are convinced, in fact, that today an institution for higher musical education should not only prepare the artists of tomorrow, but also have the duty to contribute positively to the construction of a better society.”
  • The Center will house the existing Stauffer Academy and the Stauffer Labs (new creative and innovation departments), as well as an exclusive recital room, several practice rooms and classrooms, a recording studio, a multimedia library, and a café, in addition to a guesthouse set in a romantic, enchanting garden
  • In its search for balance between tradition and innovation, the Center plans to uphold the following principles:
    • Respect and preservation of the Stauffer Academy, the Stauffer Foundation and Cremona’s artistic and cultural heritage
    • Attention to environmental sustainability
    • The use of the most advanced digital technologies
  • The Center’s three level, 2000 sq m interiors showcase an exclusive design project by Pininfarina Architecture, a worldwide icon of Italian style. By combining beauty, technology and impact, Pininfarina is respecting the stylistic features of the historic building, whilst breathing new life into it to merge tradition and modernity
  • The design choices reconcile functional requirements with an aesthetic that evokes the world of string instruments, and at the same time provides high levels of comfort and well-being. The project is a welcoming environment for cultural and educational activities, and provides young and extraordinarily talented musicians with a space for interaction and social exchange
  • Paolo Pininfarina, President of the Group, said: “Palazzo Stauffer represents an opportunity to rethink and enhance heritage through artistic and cultural initiatives that encourage the dissemination of knowledge within a community. In this way, architecture and design can be used as active tools for generating social impact and innovation.”
  • The Stauffer Center is developing a series of strategic partnerships of great importance and international prestige, consistent with the project’s level of excellence. Amongst the first collaborations to be announced are: Steinway & Sons, official supplier of all the pianos at the Center; the technological giant Oracle, which has overseen the creation of the Center’s digital web platform (accessible from June 2021) on its own Cloud infrastructure to ensure the best Digital Experience for its visitors; and Pentagram, the world’s largest independent graphic design agency, which has created a new visual identity and a new logo for the Center, the Stauffer Academy and the Stauffer Foundation
  • Alessandro Tantardini, President of the Stauffer Foundation, said: “With the creation of the Stauffer Center we write a new, important page in the history of our institution and the city of Cremona. In such a difficult and uncertain period, with courage and conviction, we are taking our commitment to promoting culture, art and music to a new level in support of young people and their future. With the Center’s project, the Stauffer Foundation positions itself as one of the most authoritative private institutions active in the field of higher musical education at an international level, thus connecting Cremona with the world even more.”
  • The Stauffer Center has evolved out of the Stauffer Foundation itself, which, having interpreted cultural, social and technological advancements, has set itself the objective of strengthening, relaunching and developing its institutional mission. It seeks to project into the future the great tradition and excellence of the Italian music school and the extraordinary cultural heritage of the city of Cremona, where violin making began
  • The Open Day in October will launch the academic year 2021/22
  • The programme schedule for the academic year 2021/22 will be announced in June on the Stauffer Center’s new website  


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Key Information

Stauffer Center for Strings

Open Day and inauguration Friday 1 October 2021


Palazzo Stauffer

Via San Martino, 6

26100 Cremona


Fondazione Stauffer

Fondazione Stauffer is one of Italy’s leading private institutions for the promotion of music and culture. The Foundation was established by the Swiss-Italian philanthropist and entrepreneur Walter Stauffer in 1970, in the Italian city of Cremona. The Foundation’s aim is to promote and support advanced musical training for string instruments, the teaching of traditional violin making and research in the field of musicology.

Accademia Stauffer

Founded in 1985, Accademia Stauffer is an ambitious educational project that aims to support future generations of musicians. Some of the most authoritative Italian Maestros have contributed to the continued success of the Academy, including Salvatore Accardo (violin), Bruno Giuranna (viola), Rocco Filippini (cello) and Franco Petracchi (double bass). The Academy is renowned as being a point of reference for the high level training of string instrumentalists. Its teaching staff comprises some of the most established and respected Italian and international artists, guaranteeing integrated and diversified teaching that is based on the excellence of the great Italian music school and in connection with the best international training experiences.

All students are supported by a full scholarship programme. Elsewhere, the Academy’s alumni includes internationally renowned soloists, established chamber music ensembles and concertmasters of some of the most prestigious orchestras.

Stauffer Center for Strings The Stauffer Center for Strings is the first international music centre entirely dedicated to the higher education of strings, and includes research, composition, production, management and innovation. It was founded in 2021 in Cremona at Palazzo Stauffer (previously Palazzo Stradiotti), an iconic, historic building that has been restored and converted into a multi-purpose campus. The Stauffer Center is one of the most advanced and innovative platforms for artistic cooperation at a global level, and a dynamic and sustainable hub dedicated to supporting the artistic and professional growth of new generations of musicians. It is also an ideal meeting and sharing space for artists, teachers and students, where they can express their talent and creativity in full respect of cultural and gender diversity.