R. B. Schlather
Manager: Damon Bristo
Management Territory: Worldwide
"A new production of the opera [Dr. Atomic] this month by the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia is more effective than all that I’ve seen before, due to the unusual direction by R. B. Schlather." Opera Critic, March 2017
"In fact, though, it was as deeply moving and disturbing an opera performance as I’ve heard this season, thanks to a subtle but devastating staging by director R. B. Schlather." New York Observer, August 2016
"Schlather’s eye for space and movement help retain the story’s foothold in myth…the opera is framed with restraint, and in ways that allow it to sound its own distinctive, mesmerizing voice." Jeremy Eichler, Boston Globe, November 2015
"The open rehearsals would have been enough. But the final product was so winning — as touching and delightful as the very touching and delightful “Alcina,” if not more so — that it redoubled the gift Mr. Schlather has given the New York cultural scene." Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, April 2015
"The staging but great physical demands on the singers, who climbed and crawled on, over, around and under the playing area. It is to Mr. Schlather’s immense credit that all this activity felt utterly organic. If there’s one word to sum up the whole ORLANDO experience, it’s “style.” Everything fit, everything worked together…opening the mind to the infinite possibility of performance." James Jorden, New York Observer, May 2015
R. B. SCHLATHER is an American opera director based in New York City. Described in the New York Times as “having a gift for drawing out vivid performances,” and in the Frankfurter Allgemeine as “the future of opera,” Schlather has accomplished experience producing opera on national and international stages, creating new productions and remounting existing ones, directing in both traditional and alternative venues, and all repertoire from Baroque to Contemporary.
In the 2014 - 2015 season, Schlather made his international debut directing Sondra Radvanovsky and Tamara Wilson . . . alternating the title role in Norma at the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona, in a restaging of Kevin Newbury's production fromSan Francisco Opera. In April he continued his series locating opera production as process art exhibition in NYC with Handel's Orlando at Whitebox Art Center, identified in the New York Times both by art critic Holland Cotter as a "species of performance art," and by classical music editor Zachary Woolfe as "the gift Mr. Schlather has given the New York cultural scene."
In summer 2015 Schlather returns to Bard SummerScape's Richard B. Fisher Center for Performing Arts as assistant to director Thaddeus Strassberger on a new production of The Wreckers. This is his third association with the arts festival after assisting on opera events in 2011 and 2014. In the Fall, Schlather will make his directing debut at Boston Lyric Opera with a new production of Philip Glass’ In The Penal Colony, presented as part of the company’s Opera Annex series.
In September 2014 Schlather received national and international press for his art world crossover, connecting opera performance to Art space and process to public, programmed as part of Whitebox Art Center's WhiteboxLab > SoundLounge, a laboratory for artistic experimentation. For two weeks during gallery hours, all rehearsals of George Frideric Handel’s Alcina were installed in Whitebox's main exhibition space, free and open to the public in person and online via a live video stream, culminating in a site specific theatric presentation with live orchestra and projected English titles. Called in the New York Times "a valuable project that deserves enthusiastic support," Schlather was invited by Whitebox to continue this genre-bending innovation with exhibitions in 2015.
Past directing credits include Werther at Opera Company of Brooklyn, Treemonisha for New York City Opera Education,Some Call Refuge at Vaudeville Park, The Arianna Project for lauded early music group Musica Nuova, a concert with Nico Muhly and Gotham Chamber Opera at multimedia art cabaret (le) Poisson Rouge, Noye’s Fludde for AshLawn Opera, andI. Were,. a pastiche created with countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo and dramaturg Joe Cermatori for the Salon/Sanctuary Concerts.
Schlather has been associated with Young Artist training programs since 2006, most recently directing the ensemble performance of La Clemenza di Tito at the Canadian Opera Company. For Central City Opera he directed the ensemble artist performance of La Boheme, and an opera scenes program with their studio artists. He was a staff director atGlimmerglass Opera for the 2006 – 2009 seasons, staging the Young American Artist opera scenes program, recitals, and cover performances. He has lead two master classes in stage presence for the Concert Artist Guild roster in New York City. He was invited to join Boston Lyric Opera’s Emerging Artist roster as stage director for the 2014-2015 season, where he assisted David Schweizer on an acclaimed fully-staged production of Frank Martin’s The Love Potion.
Schlather regularly collaborates with Christopher Alden, most recently on Cosi fan Tutte with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, conducted by Maestro Gustavo Dudamel, Lizzie Borden at Boston Lyric Opera and Tanglewood Music Festival, and Die Fledermaus at English National Opera. He has previously assisted Alden at New York City Opera, Canadian Opera Company, Portland Opera, Gotham Chamber Opera, Chicago Opera Theater, and Glimmerglass Opera.
Schlather holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History, with a minor in Drama, from Ithaca College, where he graduated with special honors in Theater Arts. His work has been published in Emergency INDEX 2011.