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In her second show, Catherine Bott explores the history and music of La Scala Milan.
In this week show - the second in Classic FM's ambitious new series - Catherine Bott attempts to answer the question: what's so special about La Scala, Milan?
This week sees the 200th anniversary of the great violinist Niccolo Paganini's first performance in this iconic venue – so Catherine takes the opportunity to find out more about the place, the works associated with it, and the many great works that have been premiered there.
Alongside music by Paganini, Catherine features Verdi's Requiem - which the composer himself conducted at La Scala on 25 May 1874, music from the operas La Gioconda, Madama Butterfly and La Wally, all of which were premiered there, and something from the great Italian soprano Renata Tebaldi, who re-opened La Scala in 1946 after the Second World War.
There's also the chance to hear some Verdi performed under Riccardo Chailly, hotly tipped to be La Scala's next Music Director.