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Ugo Dell'Ara

A choreographic composition, historical, allegorical, imaginary in two parts and eleven scenes by Luigi Manzotti



Ballet Company and Orchestra of the Teatro alla Scala

Students of the Ballet School of the Teatro alla Scala Academy

Teatro alla Scala Production




From 11 to 25 July 2015

Running Time: 2 hours 20 minutes intermission included

Notes on the performancesOpen 
In 1881, against the background of the new century, and on the eve of the National Exposition, which projected Milan beyond the Po Valley confines of the recently unified Italy, La Scala’s curtain rose for Excelsior, whose choreographic, historical, allegorical and imaginative action celebrated the triumph of Light and Civilization over Obscurantism. With libretto and choreography by Luigi Manzotti, music by Romualdo Marenco and scenery by Alfredo Edel, we are treated to the steamboat, the Voltaic pile, the telegraph, the Suez canal, and the Mont Cenis tunnel: an acclamation of the conquests of scientific and technological Progress, which brings people together and promotes brotherhood. An original and utterly Italian spectacle, a lively colossus charged with optimism, Excelsior was an extraordinary success all over the world, as an incarnation of the spirit of the times. The new edition created in 1967 by Crivelli, Dell’Ara, Carpi, and Coltellacci - at La Scala from 1974 - lightened the construction, the orchestration, the pantomime and the core of the original, but keeps intact the inspiration of Manzotti’s “ballo grande” and the old-fashioned flavour of the Italian spirit in dance.


Romualdo Marenco
Musical review
Fiorenzo Carpi and Bruno Nicolai
Ugo Dell'Ara
Filippo Crivelli
David Coleman
Sets and costumes
Giulio Coltellacci
Marco Filibeck

Guest artists 

Alina Somova
(11, 13, 15)
Federico Bonelli
(11, 13, 15)
Teatro alla Scala