tolomeo_glimmerglassGiven the choice, I’ll take Hans Neuenfels.

“Glimmerglass Opera has a notable record of performing Handel, but its productions have sometimes emphasised cuteness over emotional substance. Rather than improving the situation, Chas Rader-Shieber’s staging of Tolomeo, the first by a professional company in the US, sets a new low…. Rader-Shieber does nothing for Tolomeo except make it the butt of his jokes.” [Financial Times]

“…he preferred to drown the story-line in a never-ending barrage of visual gags, kitsch and cheap laughs. In the end, it was Rader-Shieber’s directing efforts that fell into the open sewer and died.” [CNY Cafe Momus]

Note that this is “F.B.” Michael MacLeod‘s last season at Glimmerglass; next year the reins pass into the hands of  “D., Y. K.” Francesca Zambello, whose offerings will include the quintessential Callas vehicle Medea, with erstwhile boo-magnet Alexandra Deshorties as the titular witch.