La Scala opening night to be screened across Milan

Puccini's Madame Butterfly to be shown in theatres, public spaces and prisons.

The world-famed Teatro alla Scala opera house opens its winter season with a gala performance of Puccini’s Madam Butterfly under the baton of Riccardo Chailly, with Uruguayan soprano Maria José Siri in the title role.

The first night at La Scala is also a chance to catch a glimpse of famous faces from the worlds of fashion, politics, economy and show-biz as they arrive on the red carpet between ranks of photographers and TV crews. The occasion is always a sell-out on and two days before the opening there were only three tickets left, two at €2,400 and one at €1,440.

Unusually state broadcaster RAI will carry the event live on flagship channel RAI1 (it is normally seen on the less popular culture channel RAI5), starting at 17.45, covering the arrival of the star-studded audience, the performance itself, and interviews with personalities during the interval. The opera will also be carried live on RAI’s radio channel 1.

Milan city hall has also organised live coverage in dozens of theatres, public spaces, schools and jails across the city and suburbs, free of charge as long as places are available. A full list of the locations is carried on the municipal website. The nearest site to the opera house itself is in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II.