Scuola di Musica di Fiesole – Non-profit Foundation
The School of Music of Fiesole was founded in 1974 by Piero Farulli, violist of the legendary Quartetto Italiano, and has grown to its present status thanks to the contribution of passionate professors. An international music benchmark for more than forty years, the School is currently home to 1,600 students, 14 orchestras and 6 choirs, and holds more than 180 performances annually.
A vast number of musicians who studied in Fiesole is active on the concert stage. Many received their essential professional training thanks to the Orchestra Giovanile Italiana – Italy’s first-ever project of advanced orchestra training and one of the School’s most prosperous educational projects - after which they joined the ranks of professional orchestras worldwide.
Extraordinary musicians have shared their musical and educational excellence with the institution: Riccardo Muti, Salvatore Accardo, Luciano Berio, Claudio Abbado, Carlo Maria Giulini, Maria Tipo, Trio di Trieste, Natalia Gutman, György Kurtág, Gabriele Ferro, Krzysztof Penderecki, Daniele Gatti, Pavel Vernikov, Gianandrea Noseda, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Elisso Virsaladze, Andrea Lucchesini and many others.
Historically at the forefront of musical education for young children, the School today offers a complete educational journey. Accredited in 2013 by Ministerial Decree to confer First Level AFAM Diplomas (Bachelor Degrees), since the 2019/2020 academic year the School also offers Biennio/Master Degrees.
Founder of the Sistema italiano di orchestre e cori infantili Onlus (Italian Federation of children’s and youth Orchestras and Choirs non-profit organisation) together with Federculture, Fiesole offers group lessons, free of charge, at schools in neighbourhoods located in the outskirts of Florence. The School also confers a postgraduate Master’s Certificate to educators of children’s orchestras.
In 2002, the School founded the European Chamber Music Academy (ECMA) together with some of the most prestigious music academies in Europe. This international training course aids some of the Academy’s finest quartets in garnering top results in important international competitions such as ARD in Munich, Haydn in Vienna, Shostakovich in Moscow, Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition and the Prague Spring International Music Festival.
In 2017, the School inaugurated the Casa della Musica of Arezzo, which offers courses in higher education, professional development and innovative education for children.
The School’s activities are made possible thanks to economic support provided by the MiBAC (Ministry of Cultural Assets and Activities) and the Region of Tuscany, as well as the City and the Greater Metropolitan Area of Florence. The Cassa di Risparmio Bank Foundation of Florence is a patron beyond compare of Fiesole’s projects. Numerous contributions are also made by private citizens for merit-based scholarships, as exemplified by Claudio Abbado who donated the compensation he received for his role as Senator for Life.
The School’s awards include the First Annual Abbiati Prize for recognition as the “finest musical initiative” (1981), the President of the Republic National Award bestowed upon the School by President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi (2005) and the Praemium Imperiale Grant for Young Artists from the Japan Art Association (2008). In August of 2016, the Orchestra dei Ragazzi won the World Orchestra Festival, organized by the Wiener Philharmoniker at the Musikverein of Vienna.
Alexander Lonquich has served as the School’s Artistic Director since October 2020.