La Scala exterior is paint-bombed by climate activists

La Scala exterior is paint-bombed by climate activists


norman lebrecht

December 08, 2022

The opening of La Scala’s season last night was made slightly more colourful by Ultima Generazione climate protesters who threw paintballs at the Palladian entrance. But that was at 8.15 in the morning.

The police were ready for them and five were arrested. The facade was cleaned up before 9.

Inside, Riccardo Chailly conducted an epic performance of Musorgsky’s Boris Godunov, overriding objections from the Ukrainian consulate that Russian operas should not be staged during Putin’s invasion of their country.

La Scala maintains that Godunov is about the consequences of misusing massive Moscow power.

One and a half million Italians watched the opera on Rai TV, way above expectations for a non-Italian opera and amounting to 9 percent of the total TV audience. There was 13 minutes of applause at the final curtain.

. Here’s a curtain call:


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  • Concertgebouw79 says:

    I watched Rai Due evening news. They started and talked 10 mn about the show, the officials and about the extraordinary popularity of the president Mattarella. There’s always something special when he’s there and when Chailly conduct the hymn of Italy we will never see again at la Scala. They are certainly both the best of Italy today not in a very pesant period in that country.

  • Duncan says:

    I don’t think La Scala or Chailly should have to apologise for performing Boris or any other Russian work which bears no connection to the invasion of Ukraine. Censoring art in this way seems a totalitarian response.

  • Pianofortissimo says:

    Today paintballs, maybe Molotov cocktails tomorrow, and mass murderous sabotage as a nex step? What those climate & social justice warriors practice is an insane kind of religion, and their “god”, whatever it is, is on “their” side.

  • MMcGrath says:

    Lock them up for the destruction of public property. Or glue them to the side of a talk building.

    And drive a diesel!

  • Micaela Bonetti says:

    Very funny, at the beginning of video, to hear the lady backstage repeatedly guiding the choirs for their placement onstage during applause!

    Anyway, applause to childrens choir, choir, comprimari, soloists, orchestra and Maestro Chailly for the thrilling performance.
    Applause to all involved in the visual aspects of the performance, and last but not the least to RAI-TV and RSI La 2 for broadcasting La Prima della Scala!

    • Concertgebouw79 says:

      Has as I said every 8th of december after the opening night : “La Scala is living now a real golden age.”

  • MWnyc says:

    Compared to some opening night protests at or in front of La Scala, this one seems relatively mild.

  • Alank says:

    I find it interesting that these barbarian climate activists don’t vandalize or disrupt highly electrified and energy intensive rock “music” shows nor create bonfires of their energy sucking Iphones. Instead they throw paint on great works of art or disrupt classical music performances. The barbarians are not at the gates they are well inside!

    • Tristan says:

      send those barbarians to their communist friends in Russia China or North Korea…they are just frustrated that the Left had collapsed wherever – they have nothing to believe in any more
      where are the protest against Stalinist Russia?

  • Gustavo says:

    I fell asleep.

  • Gustavo says:

    I can see Riccardo Muti rubbing his hands with glee.

  • Pedro says:

    The first time I went to La Scala was in January 1981 for an extraordinary performance of Boris Godunov, conducted by Abbado, produced by Lioubinov, with Ghiaurov Boris death still resounds in my ears after more than forty years.

  • TNVol says:

    Start throwing these anarchists in prison. Or disappear them.