Carlo Maria Badini, Former Superintendent of La Scala, Dies at 81

Classic Arts News   Carlo Maria Badini, Former Superintendent of La Scala, Dies at 81
Carlo Maria Badini, a former superintendent of Milan's La Scala, died yesterday at age 81, reports the Associated Press.

The current superintendent, St_phane Lissner, reportedly led a minute of silence at the opera house yesterday evening before a performance of Francesco Cilea's Adriana Lecouvreur.

In a statement quoted by the AP, Lissner and La Scala's management praised Badini's "human and pragmatic vein" and said that the opera company "remembers with affection the man who guided it with honesty and rigor for 13 years."

Born in 1925 in Bologna, Badini was superintendent at La Scala from 1977 to 1990 after heading the Teatro Comunale in Bologna. He shocked old-school Italian opera lovers by introducing commercial activities to La Scala in order to rescue the famous theater from its financial woes. Purists were miffed when the name sof commercial sponsors appeared on La Scala's playbills and television cameras entered the 18th-century theater to record productions for broadcast.

However, writes the AP, Badini's approach was credited with eliminating deficits at L Scala while keeping artistic standards high, by engaging as music directors such top conductors as Claudio Abbado and Riccardo Muti. Badini also created the Orchestra Filarmonica della Scala as an institutional vehicle for the house's pit orchestra to perform in concert.

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