MILAN, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Diesel livestreamed its preparations for Milan Fashion Week and highlighted its online audience at its runway show on Wednesday while a protester stormed the Fendi catwalk on the second day of the city's leg of the autumn/winter 2024 catwalk calendar.

Creative director Glenn Martens took the unusual step of sharing the behind-the-scenes preparations from its atelier, fittings and catwalk space this week ahead of the Diesel show.

In a further bid to draw in online fans, giant screens showed some of them dialling in via video call on Wednesday to watch the show alongside guests by the catwalk and hear models' names being called backstage as they entered.

Martens opened the show with mainly dark looks - a grey shirt, a matching black shiny coat and trousers as well as vests and dresses with cut-out sheer tops.

Dresses came in mixed leopard and floral prints, coats were shaggy and fluffy and there were plenty of denim looks.

At Fendi, which is known for its use of fur, a protester from animal rights organisation PETA briefly stormed the catwalk carrying a banner reading "Animals Are Not Clothing".

The protester, who also had "Turn your back on animal skin" written on her back, was swiftly escorted off.

At Alberta Ferretti, pleats and metallic embellishments dominated the runway.

Ferretti opened the show with dark colours: long black pleated skirts with paired lace trimmed tops and wide-legged grey trousers worn with black sheer shirts.

Brown trouser suits with orange or green shirts followed and there was also a range of dresses that were sleek and floor-length or short and sparkly.

Metallic embellishments adorned jackets, tops as well as evening wear.

The label is part of Italian fashion group Aeffe, which also owns Moschino and other brands and which reported a 9% decrease in sales last year, to 319 million euros ($345 million), mainly due to a slowdown in the European and American markets.

Asked about his 2024 outlook, Aeffe Executive Chairman Massimo Ferretti told Reuters in emailed comments: "We are fully aware of the complexities of the moment, but at the same time we are very confident about the results we can achieve this season with our (new) collections."

Milan Fashion Week, which runs until Monday, is the third stop in the month-long catwalk calendar, which also includes New York, London and Paris.

Italian fashion houses Etro and Cavalli will also present their new lines on Wednesday. ($1 = 0.9253 euros) (Reporting by Marie-Louise Gumuchian; additional reporting by Elisa Anzolin; editing by Philippa Fletcher, Alexandra Hudson)