At Milan's Teatro alla Scala the most important date of the year is 7 December, the opening of the opera and ballet season. The theatre bursts with stars and starlets, Fendi and face-lifts. One of the theatre's stars who has burned brightest and longest, Carla Fracci, has often been on stage or in the platea for the gala opening, for more than half a century. She was with her husband, director Beppe Menegatti, for the opening of the current season as the guest of Italian energy company Eni, who are long-standing and important sponsors of La Scala.
The dinner that Eni hosts after the opera, is something of a Scala family reunion. This year it gave the opportunity for Fracci and the other big name in Italian ballet, Roberto Bolle, to get together. Here they are pictured together after the performance of La Traviata.