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Italians Abroad: Verdi's La traviata and the 1906 Milan Exposition

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
JournalCambridge Opera Journal
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2019


King's Authors


This article examines the relationship between Milan’s 1906 Exposition and a celebrated revival of Verdi’s La traviata (1853). An event of national and international importance, the exposition was notable for its focus on Italy’s global presence, and in particular Italy’s relationship with Latin America. The Traviata production, meanwhile, comprised the first Italian staging of Verdi’s opera in period costume, performed at La Scala by a quintessentially modern, celebrity ensemble to mark the exposition’s opening. This article explores the parallels between the exposition and the production, to investigate the complex, shifting position of Milan (and Italy) within the transatlantic cultural and operatic networks of the time; and more broadly, to examine the role of operatic staging in shaping understandings of global space within the mobile operatic canon of the early twentieth century.

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