Among other things, the Philharmonic Academy of Bologna houses a “Luthier’s Workshop”. It is a replica of the workshop of the luthier Ivano Coratti, which he donated to the Academy to be used for educational purposes, and includes the tools of the trade, a luthier’s work table, several finished instruments, and other unfinished or under construction pieces.
As a child, Ivano Coratti (Ospital Monacale, 1933) was encouraged to become a cabinet maker. His passion, however, was music, and he enrolled in Bologna’s “G.B. Martini” Conservatory, graduating in clarinet and bassoon. In the mid-1960s he joined the orchestra of the municipal theatre. He had not lost his interest in woodworking and decided to combine his two passions by building musical instruments. He taught himself how to be a luthier. In 1973 he came in second at the National Biennale in Cremona. He exhibited his instruments at many trade shows, and in 1981 won first prize at the Wieniawsky competition in Poznan, Poland. In 1979 he was one of the founding members of the Italian Association of Lutherie. Between 1981 and 1985 he taught lutherie at the “G. Frescobaldi” Conservatory in Ferrara.
Coratti built instruments inspired by the Bologna school embodied by Giuseppe Fiorini and Augusto Pollastri, but he also enjoyed making less orthodox instruments such as small violins, violas d’amore, and rebecs. His workshop features a copy of Saint Catherine dé Vigri’s rebec, the original of which is held at the Corpus Domini Church in Bologna.