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Ebe Colciaghi at La Scala

by Vittoria Crespi Morbio.
Essay by Vittoria Crespi Morbio, Searching for Modernism.
Appendices: biography; catalogue of works (edited by Giulia Belletti); chronology of performances.
Collection «Performing Artists at La Scala».
Amici della Scala – Grafiche Step Editrice, Parma, 2015.
Italian edition, pp. 157.

Right after the Second World War Ebe Colciaghi (Monza, 1921–Rio de Janeiro, 2005), still a very young girl, was suddenly at the heart of the rebirth of the Italian theatre. She enjoyed Giorgio Strehler’s trust and patiently endured the tyranny of the man of genius. The scenographer Gianni Ratto was her distinguished and protective mentor. She designed the costumes for an interminable series of legendary performances, from Lucia di Lammermoor with Maria Callas and Karajan conducting and directing, the stormy Scala premiere of Wozzeck, up to the world premiere of Stravinsky’s Rake’s Progress, a La Scala production at La Fenice in Venice. Her fresh, unadorned line, the flexibility and delicacy of her taste gave the Italian theatre a decisive stamp of modernism.