Milan’s world-famous opera-house Teatro alla Scala is celebrating the centenary of its museum with an exhibition of its most valuable material, with the original manuscript of Giuseppe Verdi’s Requiem Mass as the jewel in the crown. Other items on display include costumes, scenery drafts, correspondence with composers, original scores and historical musical instruments, some of them never before seen by the public.
Alongside the historical artefacts, a multimedia show in the upper level of the 150,000-volume library will explore the century since the museum first opened in 1913.
One room will be dedicated to composer Richard Wagner, whose bicentenary is also celebrated this year, along with that of Verdi. Another section will cover more famous personalities who have a close relation with La Scala, from Rossini to Puccini, Goldoni to Mozart.
The museum welcomes some 250,000 visitors per year, eight out of ten of them foreigners. Among paid entrance locations in Milan, it is second only to Leonardo’s Last Supper.
On the birthday of Verdi, 10 October, the theatre will be open free throughout the day for screening of films and documentaries and, in the evening, readings of excerpts from Verdi’s letters.
The museum is open every day until 31 December from 09.00 to 12.30 and from 13.30 to 17.30. Entrance costs €6, with reductions for groups and schools.