Established in 1867 with the then Music Secondary School, the Library of the Conservatorio di Torino houses a book heritage of more than 100,000 titles, of which 60,000 printed scores, 3,500 music manuscripts (many with autographs), 25,000 volumes of music history, musicology and treatises, 450 series of musical periodicals (of which one hundred current titles) and a few thousand recordings.
The original nucleus was formed by donations by the Turin-based publishers Giudici & Strada, depositing copies of musical scores published at the Music Secondary school library. Later the library was enriched with private collections received thanks to donations or bequests, including the particularly relevant contribution by Stefano Tempia, with the printed editions of the concertos for violin by Viotti and autographed manuscripts by Giambattista Polledro (1781-1853). Among the rarities, manuscripts by Coccia, G. Turina, Pugnani, L. Anglois, Asioli were also obtained; first editions of Corelli, G.B. Martini, Boccherini, G.B. Somis, J. Haydn, Clementi, and a collection of manuscript scores of theatrical works (some autographed) from the representations by the Regio in the early nineteenth century (among the composers: Mercadante, Coccia, Morlacchi, Pacini, Latilla, Paër, Nicolini, Vaccai etc.).
The most recent acquisitions are the legacy of violinist Teresina Tua (1866-1956), the music library of Queens Margherita and Elena di Savoia, the private collections of Mario Quaglia, Alberto Mantelli and Massimo Bruni. A special section of great historical and documentary interest concerns the composers active in Turin and the Piedmont area in the nineteenth century, such as Paolo Giuseppe Ghebart (1796-1870), Luigi Felice Rossi (1805-1863), Stefano Tempia (1832-1878), Giovanni Bolzoni (1841-1919); and, in the next century: Leone Sinigaglia (1868-1944), Enrico Contessa (1877-1948), Luigi Perrachio (1883-1966), Giorgio Federico Ghedini (1892-1965), Ettore Desderi (1892-1974), Angelo Cuneo, Pierluigi Pistone, Giulio Cesare Gedda, Federico Collino, Ulisse Matthey, Vittorio Baravalle, and more recently Carlo Mosso and Ruggero Maghini. The Conservatory Library holds almost all of the manuscripts or printed copies of the works by all of these composers.
The procurement policy in recent decades is mainly aimed at providing the Library with modern musicological subsidies, aimed at educational and research activities. The library now has an extensive set of critical editions and musical monuments, works of reference, historical and critical literature and treatises. In 1997, a subsidy from the FONDAZIONE CRT (Cassa di Risparmio di Torino) made a further strengthening of this department possible and also permitted the acquisition of modern computer equipment for the library. Among the short-term programmes, the Library is currently completing the transfer of data and files on the CD-Rom catalogue of the various manuscripts, and the most important historical sources.
As part of the Department of History of Music and Composition of the Conservatory, the Library promoted in 1997 the creation of a permanent workshop for the review, editing and performance of unpublished music drawn from its collections, alongside the normal teaching activities, but also aimed at self-publishing initiatives. The first volume in a series published by the Library and dedicated to the twentieth century musicians (MUSICHE INEDITE E RARE DEL ‘900) was released in March 1998, with 12 Piedmontese Songs (from the collection by Leone Sinigaglia) developed for voice and piano by Carlo Mosso. Other volumes to be published will be dedicated to new works by Giorgio Federico Ghedini and Luigi Perrachio.
Conservatory of Music “Giuseppe Verdi” Library
Via San Francesco da Paola, 27 – Turin
Tel. +39 118138122 – Fax +39 11885165
Opening hours: Monday and Thursday: 8:30am to 5:00pm – Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday: 8:30am to 1:30pm
– Book requests are accepted up to a half hour before closing.
– The loans service will end half an hour before the closing time of the Library.