When the Teatro alla Scala was built its surrounding context was very different from that of today, with Piazza della Scala only being created in 1858.

The design of the Theatre is in fact best admired from the side, rather than from the front, a perspective clearly visible in Angelo Inganni’s painting exhibited in the Museo Teatrale alla Scala. The result obtained by the architect, Giuseppe Piermarini, did not please everyone. The philosopher, Pietro Verri, for example, stated that “the façade of the new theatre is very beautiful on paper, and it even surprised me when I saw it before work began on it; but now I almost dislike it”.

Verri’s unfavourable opinion was due to the porch for the carriages, a solution that Piermarini adopted to provide the façade with some depth, which would otherwise have been impossible in such a narrow street. However, his choice proved farsighted: in the mid-nineteenth century Piazza della Scala was opened and the architect’s decision appeared quite prophetic.