First performance broadcast on La Scala TV

Watching Verdi’s I Vespri Siciliani with Mrs QS, which is the first broadcast on Teatro alla Scala Milan’s new Live TV service.
A brilliant service that gives you access to this Premier Opera House from the comfort of your own home and in both Standard HD (€9.99) or 4k HD (€14.99).
A most enjoyable way of passing Valentines Day on the 40th Anniversary of our first date.


Do go to La Scala if you get a chance. It’s a lovely, lovely place. If I recall, our seats cost €300 each, but it was worth every cent for the memories.


We were there in June for the Rigoletto and our seats cost €300 each😁
Row 3 seats 10 & 11. It was a wonderful experience.
We were also at a performance of The Magic Flute in Vienna in December.
Love going to the Opera. :heart:
We saw several Operatic concerts and full operas during our visit to Italy last June including Aida in Verona.


What a lovely photo. Opera is great. We went to the Statsopera in Vienna a few years ago. The drinks were great value! Tomorrow it’s the Barber of Seville. Not in Milan or Vienna, but at the Arts Centre in Havant!


I’ve not been to any of the big opera houses in Italy - and in planning a campervan trip for late spring had a quick scan of what’s on at La Scala, finding the only thing at the sort of time we expect to be in the vicinity to be Lucia de Lammermoor - and not knowing anything by Donizetti I didn’t feel the cost of €500-600 for the two of us to be anywhere near good use of the money - indeed I’d need an awful lot of convincing even if it was one of my favourites like Turandot or La Traviata. I can better understand that sort of cost for the experience of Verona arena.

One thing I love about Italy is the accessibility of opera, performance almost everywhere, from churches to assorted halls and palaces, and of course open air in the summer. And although most are not lavish productions, and no surtitles in English, the quality of music and singing are generally first rate - from less than a tenth the price of La Scala for a good seat. What does La Scala have or do as a venue have that is so special?

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Well be watching it at our local cinema too😊

When La Scala puts tickets on sale, they are available for a few hours for people to buy in person, and most of the cheaper seats go in that time. At least, that’s what happened when we went, and I was buying tickets online from home. Most of the major opera houses charge large amounts for their best seats. La Scala is one of the world’s great opera houses and I’ve never regretted the cost for a second. It’s a lovely memory, and memories are priceless. Sometimes logic needs to be set aside.


I know exactly what you mean.
They also run subscription/membership programs that get access 3 days to a week before general release, so a lot of tickets go then.
We paid for our Vienna tickets 6 months before we went, but didn’t get notification as to whether we had been allocated seats or not until 3 weeks before.
Some of the ticket practices around major opera houses are bizarre and it’s what makes opera so inaccessible to many. That and the cost…:face_with_diagonal_mouth:

A few years ago we went to New York for a few nights. We booked tickets for the Met on one night, and the Village Vanguard another. We bought directly from the Vanguard, but couldn’t work out how to do it for the Met, so we bought from a third party seller. When we got to the hotel, a courier turned up with the Met tickets, for which we paid about three times face value, and they were very much ‘cheap seats’.

So off we went to the Vanguard, which was very close to our hotel. In we went, only to be told by the guy on the door that our tickets were for the following night. It quickly dawned on us that we were at the Vanguard when we should be at the Met. It was totally my fault, and Mrs HH was not a happy bunny, as you can imagine. The opera was, of course, well underway, so there was no way we could get there. As the Vanguard wasn’t sold out, the guy on the door kindly said we could stay, so we did, and it was a great show.

The next morning, with Mrs HH still not happy, I rang the Met on the off chance that they had spare tickets for that night. Amazingly they did, and we got a couple of great tickets at face value for much less than we paid for much poorer tickets via the reseller. The only condition was that we got up there pronto and picked them up, which was a small price to pay.

So it all worked out fine in the end, and we learned the lesson that I cannot be relied upon to organise outings. The Met was absolutely great.


@QuickSticks I hope you enjoyed The Barber of Seville last night. We loved it. In some ways seeing it filmed is more engaging, as you can see the expressions so much more clearly. That’s what opera glasses are for of course. They did so well to deal with the Doctor being unable to sing, very impressive. And all for £15, including a glass of wine.

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This is nothing to do with La Scala which I have never been to, but a very good experience for not much money in the UK is to go to a live streaming from the Royal Opera House (and the Royal Ballet) at Covent Garden. The streaming happens live in cinemas in many towns (and there may well be one replay of the live recording at another date/time). I believe there are streamed performances at some cinemas outside the UK too.

Of course it’s not the whole live opera house experience, but you get subtitles, can see the acting as well as hear the singing and orchestra, enjoy interesting editorial/interviews before the performance and during the intervals and all for £25 or thereabouts per seat. And if you have this in your own town, you can be home with a glass of wine in your hand 20 minutes after the performance ends.

Of course it may be that this is the origin of HH’s Barber of Seville.

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Exactly so, David. It was a live stream from Covent Garden. All for £15 including a glass of fizz. Absolutely brilliant, and we are planning to do it again.

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The last thing we did was the new ballet “Like Water For Chocolate” from Covent Garden about a month ago. It cost £22 each, what with bring nearer to London I suppose, and no glass of fizz…

Anyway it was excellent and hearing the composer, conductor and choreographer talking to Darcy Bussell about how they approached their work and what they thought about it all was fascinating.

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You need to live in a cheap area! It’s strange, last Friday we saw Rossini’s grave, and yesterday, five days later, we see one of his operas. Mrs HH’s sister married an Italian, whose surname is Rossini. A veritable feast of Rossini.

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This is all saying that you should get a haircut Nigel!

Yeah, most enjoyable.
We thought they coped very well with the illness issue and it didn’t spoil the show at all.
We have done several of these now and are seeing Turandot next. It’s Mrs QS’s favourite :blush:

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I’m pleased you enjoyed it. We’ve just booked our Turandot tickets.

I discovered streamed “live” opera ( actually recordings, but no different for that) during lockdown when the New York Met was offering a new free performance every week. Upgrading my home cinema setup by feeding through the hifi instead of the surround system we got for movies made quite a difference! Being on a big screen and darkened room added to the sense of occasion, and we enjoyed watching quite a few (though the older ones were noticeably poorer quality). Not the same as live opera, of course, but something we will indeed do more of. I suppose I will have to choose one to subscribe to, unless any do one-off pay on demand - I’ll have to look into it, including comparing different sources.

Unlike HH we found close up head shots distracting - they create a feeling of watching a film rather than watching live theatre, and we both felt it would have been better without (but then, we were viewing on a 12ft wide screen from only about 12ft away)

Two venues locally periodically do live opera screenings. One is a small arts centre half an hour away, quite a nice venue for some things but small screen (no larger than ours at home) and not great sound system, and we were in a minority applauding after each act - we were left underwhelmed. The other is a school arts studio, quite a bit larger auditorium than the arts centre, but so far we haven’t got around to trying. (These also say live streaming, but actually just recorded.)

Meanwhile I’d still like to know what somewhere like La Scala brings to the experience to make their horrendous cost feel worth it…. (Our introduction to opera was Welsh National Opera, originally in Cardiff’s New Theatre, and then their purpose built venue. Whilst not as lavish in terms of scenery/props as some of the operas we’ve seen recorded at the NY Met, they were still pretty grand affairs - but at the time an awful lot less expensive than, say, Covent Garden or, I guess but didn’t look at the time, La Scala.

We would have liked to do Marriage of Figaro too, but Mrs QS is away at her Company conference that week☹️

With LaScala TV you don’t subscribe, you just pay for the ones you want to watch and from the following day you get a 72 hour window to watch again.

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