7 Dec-12 Jan 2006. Conducted by Riccardo Chailly, directed by Franco Zeffirelli, with Marco Spotti, Irina Makarova, Violeta Urmana, Roberto Alagna, Carlo Guelfi.
La Scala will instead be opening its curtains on a dramatically different prospect in the shape of Verdis Aida (7 Dec-12 Jan). The director will be Franco Zeffirelli who returns to brave Aida for the fifth time in the Milanese venue, having staged the opera three times in the 1960s and once in 1976. Will it be a production with a foot in the past which revisits while modernised in taste and style one of his old conceptions, or a production looking to the future with a completely new and reworked Aida? Since Zefferelli is the last of the breed of old-style directors, one thing is sure: the grand traditions of the commanding scenes, beautiful costumes and thoughtful lighting will be respected. The rest will be a surprise but hopefully original. Some information has already been released regarding the musical aspects: Radames will be sung by the tenor Roberto Alagna, the star of the moment, who is generous, self-possessed and has a fine voice; Violeta Urmana will portray Aida for the first time since she moved from mezzosoprano to soprano. Another attraction is the conductor Riccardo Chailly, who seems to return to La Scala with regularity since Muti left and whom we hope will manage to repeat the success of a flamboyant Rigoletto from the last season. Paolo Di Nicola