Room 3, also known as the sala dell’Esedra, is like the firmament of the belcanto. Looking out from the paintings that line the walls are the prima donnas of la Scala’s golden age. Draped in the costumes of classical heroines, Giuditta Pasta, Isabella Colbran, Maria Malibran stare down at you with eyes that are severe or dreamy, brooding or sensual.

Alongside them, you can see the composers – Rossini, Bellini, Donizetti – as well as the great male singers, such as Nicola Tacchinardi, captured here by Antonio Canova.