The Teatro Regio Ducal was the opera house in Milan from 26 December 1717 until 25 February 1776, when it was burned down following a carnival gala. Many famous composers and their operas are associated with it, including the premieres of Mozart's Ascanio in Alba, Mitridate, re di Ponto, and Lucio Silla. The opera house also saw the premiere of Maria Teresa Agnesi Pinottini's Ciro in Armenia in 1753; one of the earliest successfully received operas by a female composer. Variant forms such as Regio-Ducal Teatro and Teatro Regio Ducale are also seen.
The atmosphere in opera houses at the time was very sociable and congenial, and the Teatro Regio Ducal was no exception.
After the destruction of the Teatro Regio Ducal, which had been a wing of the Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace), two new theatres were commissioned to be built near the site, both designed by Giuseppe Piermarini. The Nuovo Regio Ducal Teatro alla Scala (with variant forms of its name), the present-day La Scala, was inaugurated on 3 August 1778. The Teatro alla Canobbiana, now called the Teatro Lirico, was inaugurated on 21 August 1779.