The new centre will be dedicated to higher education, research, composition, production, management and innovation

Stauffer Center

Following a difficult year for Cremona, which was hit hard by the Coronavirus crisis, the violin-making capital of the world is to become the site of a new postgraduate academy. 

The Stauffer Center for Strings, which opens in October, will be the country’s first international music centre for higher education, research, composition, production, management and innovation, entirely dedicated to stringed instruments. 

Based in the Palazzo Stradiotti (renamed Palazzo Stauffer) - an iconic seventeenth-century building in the centre of Cremona - it will include creative and innovation departments, an intimate concert hall, a series of study rooms and classrooms, a recording studio, a multimedia library, a cafeteria,  guesthouse and garden. Pininfarina Architecture, which undertook the design, have also incorporated the city’s pre-existing Stauffer Academy (founded in 1985) and Stauffer Labs. 

Teachers will be drawn from academic institutions around the world, as well as the teaching staff of the Stauffer Academy, which include Salvatore Accardo (violin), Bruno Giuranna (viola), Antonio Meneses (cello), Franco Petracchi (double bass) and the Quartetto di Cremona. Esteemed faculty will include: violinists Lisa Batiashvili, Daniel Hope, Viktoria Mullova, Julian Rachlin; violists Lawrence Power, Antoine Tamestit; cellists Sol Gabetta, Steven Isserlis, Mischa Maisky, Alisa Weilerstein; and double bassist Uxía Martínez Botana, Ödön Rácz

The 2021-22 academic programme will include a specialist course for concertmasters, a string composition workshop with Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw and creative courses for exploration in music – an ambitious project for tomorrow’s musicians

All of the centre’s programmes are provided free of charge thanks to a full-coverage scholarship programme 

Read Innovative solutions: Postcard from Cremona

Read Quartetto di Cremona: Italian Postcards

Watch Cremona in lockdown


The Stauffer Center’s inauguration will be held on Friday 1 October 2021, with an Open Day event. 

‘Excellence, internationality, innovation and sustainability: these are the guiding principles on which we founded the Stauffer Center,’ says Paolo Petrocelli, general manager of the nascent centre and of the Stauffer Academy.

‘With the creation of the Stauffer Center, we are writing a new, important page in the history of our institution and of the city of Cremona,’ declared Alessandro Tantardini, President of the Stauffer Foundation, one of the main Italian private institutions for the promotion of musical culture. ‘In such a difficult and uncertain phase, we are taking our commitment to promoting culture, art and music in support of young people and their future to a new level with courage and conviction.’