Milan (opera) (It. Milano; Ger. Mailand)
- Mariangela Donà
(It. Milano; Ger. Mailand)
Italian city, capital of Lombardy. It is not only the home of the most famous Italian opera house, the Teatro alla Scala, but has also been a principal centre of Italian opera since the late 18th century, when it was the main city from which northern Italy was governed.
Religious processions with music and dialogue are known in Milan from the 14th century, and stage entertainments with music, song and dancing became popular at court during the 15th and 16th centuries. An important forerunner of opera was the eclogue Arminia by Giambattista Visconte, performed on 18 July 1599 in honour of the Infanta Isabella and her husband Archduke Albert of Austria; the intermedi, by Camillo Schiaffenati, were perhaps the first in Milan to include music in recitative style. This spectacle and others were performed in the Salone Margherita, the theatre in the ducal palace named after Archduchess Margherita of Austria, wife of Philip III of Spain, and inaugurated in her presence in ...