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Macbeth at La Scala

We finally made it. At long last we got our season tickets from la Scala and were looking forward to Macbeth with childish enthusiasm. Then? A strike, yes a full- blown nationwide transport strike. (Weeping and gnashing of teeth) Sometimes you just don’t luck out! We were not even sure about the day either but in the end IT WAS ON .

So off to Milan pretty early and thank goodness too because the traffic was awful and the metro seemed to be taking longer than usual, but I arrived. No time to take a leisurely look at the Galleria and when I’d passed the barriers ,green pass, temperature, ticket, I decided to take the lift. But as so often happens, the many flights of steps were quicker than waiting. I also noticed another thing: the carpeting stops at the landing leading to the boxes, just la Scala underlining that you are one of the “poor” people who have “cheap seats in the gods”!

The usual feeling of breathless expectation, it’s been such a long time since we were last here , but here we go. An overture that sounds to my untrained ear very Verdiano; then the heady mixture of theatre to take in; choreography, the scenery, the unloved video projections. Got it! The orchestra under Chailly, the chorus, the singers; what can I say? They had slipped into their roles and were confident and in great voice, better than on First Night I was told. In fact the appreciative audience interrupted after every aria which doesn’t always happen. Obviously the stars were incredible, but I also liked the choreography (by Daniel Ezralow), I found it very meaningful, a representation of all that was rotten in Macbeth’s world; but at the same time I perceived it as a possible comment on modern-day haters while the witches were obviously purveyors of fake news . The controversial videos might have been too much for people who have problems with flashing lights but they symbolised the hallucinatory world of supersition and ambition, or perhaps the world order crashing about his ears I felt. A quick look at the marvellous decorations in the Galleria before making tracks home. Could we be getting back to normality?

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