The Milan theater continue working with the Russians

The Milan theater “La Scala” expressed readiness to continue working with the Russians.

Representatives of the legendary theater “La Scala” in Milan declared their readiness to continue cooperation with artists from the aggressor country. This was reported by the Italian newspaper La Repubblica.

“We choose with whom to cooperate on the basis of professional and artistic qualities, and the Russians are specialists in such a repertoire,” the theater said.

According to representatives of La Scala, the opera “Boris Godunov” was a success, and all the tickets for “The Nutcracker” were also sold.

In November, the Consul General of Ukraine in Milan, Andriy Kartysh, demanded that the city management and the La Scala theater cancel the Russian opera Boris Godunov. However, the theater still presented a production at the opening of the season.

In Milan, Ukrainians protested against the Russian opera at the La Scala theater

On December 7, the Ukrainian community in Milan, Italy, protested near the prestigious La Scala opera house.

 The participants of the action condemned the decision of the theater management to open the theater season on December 7 with the play “Boris Godunov” by the Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky based on the work of the poet Alexander Pushkin.

“This is a demonstration against Russian propaganda, which uses its own culture to promote the anti-democratic ultra-nationalist narrative of the Russian world in the West,” the organizers of the protest said.

According to them, the pro-Putin singer Ildar Abdrazakov, who plays the role of Tsar Boris Godunov, did not condemn the Russian war against Ukraine, but on the contrary – continues to be part of the “special Russian cultural forces” that promote the imperial ideology.

“The Russian people, their imperial mentality and their culture, which laid the foundations of the invading ideology of the Russian world, should not be divided,” Ukrainian activists urged the Italians.

In previous months, the community and diplomats appealed to the management of La Scala, to the mayor of Milan with a request to replace the premiere with another (non-Russian) performance and to remove Russian works from the repertoire for the time when Russia’s barbaric invasion of Ukraine continues.

A corresponding petition was created with the signatures of more than 20 Ukrainian associations and more than 1,000 citizens of Ukraine and Italy.

One of the directors of the theater, Dominik Mayer, said that Mussorgsky’s opera is not propaganda of the Russian government

“There is nothing directed against Ukraine, instead there is a performance that was prepared for three years, it is a masterpiece,” Mayer replied to the criticism. To protect the image of the world-famous theater, he recalled the termination of the labor agreement with the Russian conductor Valery Gergiev, who did not publicly condemn Russia’s armed aggression against Ukraine.

Milan Mayor Beppe Zala, in turn, noted that La Scala demonstrated its support for Ukrainians with a charity concert in April, raising about 400,000 euros to help refugees and taking Ukrainian ballerinas to study at its dance school.

Mayor Zala considers the controversy surrounding the opera “Boris Godunov” inappropriate.

“It is unacceptable to think that when you do not support the politics of a country, you should abolish its culture, especially when it comes to the Russian experience, which has greatly inspired our European sensibilities,” said Beppe Zala in his Good Day Milan podcast.

The premiere was broadcast by the state TV channel RAI1 and media companies of other countries. President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella, Prime Minister Giorgia Maloney, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen were present at the grand opening of the theater season. 

The television version was presented by well-known presenters and journalists of the RAI1 channel, Milli Carlucci and Bruno Vespa.

The premiere of the Russian opera at La Scala was called the most important cultural event of the year in Italy. For the first time in the last seven years, the season opens with a piece by a foreign composer. The Italian press gave wide publicity to the event.

Note that all allies of the Russian Federation are responsible for aggression against Ukraine. Until the war in Ukraine ends, the world should boycott Russia’s presence in the international cultural space. 

Culture cannot be outside of politics. Especially when culture is one of the types of politics used by a nuclear terrorist state as a weapon in the war against world democracy.

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