Milan Expo’s Tree of Life to shine again

But a muted event on 1 May.

The Tree of Life, the widely admired neighbour of the Italy pavilion in last year’s Expo Milano 2015, is to shine again on Sunday 1 May – but with less splendour than originally planned.

Unable to find sponsors to underwrite the hugely expensive technological display which so entranced Expo visitors, Arexpo – the company now owning and managing the grounds – has had to tone down the exhibit to a show of projected lights and fireworks.

The occasion will be a concert by the orchestra of the Academy of the city’s Teatro alla Scala for 500 invited guests from major institutions and from countries represented at last year’s Expo, celebrating international Labour Day.

Sunday will also see the announcement of the winner of the contest for a new name for the former Expo grounds. Over 700 suggestions have been submitted, say the organisers, and the winner will be present at the concert with three guests.

Although the Lombardy regional government had hoped for a formal re-opening of the grounds by May, cost restrictions have shifted the first public event to later down the month, when the gates should open for a large part of Milan Triennale, mega-screens for European League football matches, and other sport and street-food events.