Martha Collins is the Stage Director for the performance of Georges Bizet’s Carmen for the Sarasota Opera House opening on February 11, 2012. They have chosen to do the original, more traditional version of this beloved and controversial opera and appear to be relishing the challenge. I sat down with Martha Collins to learn more about her life off-stage.
Dining Diva: Where are you from?
Martha Collins: Aylmer, Quebec which is a suburb of Ottawa.
DD: What is your favorite food from home?
MC: I loved my mother’s pastry. She was a fabulous cook who could effortlessly entertain a large group at a moment’s notice. She and my dad loved having a large family and I have eight sisters.
DD: What are your favorite places to eat in Sarasota?
MC: This is my ninth production in Sarasota and I have also worked with the Youth Opera, so I can confidently say that Whole Foods can close on my business, Patrick’s is a nice haunt and I love Epicure’s pizza (I like it well-done).
DD: Where would you like to travel that you have not already been?
MC: My father was from Belfast and my mother was from Galway, so I would love to go to Ireland and see it through my own eyes. My parents would tell us stories and we were exposed to Irish literature and history and, of course, Irish sing-a-longs.
DD: Do you like to cook?
MC: I like the social aspects of cooking. I love to get together with my eight sisters and talk and cook with them.
DD: Do you Karaoke?
MC: I was an opera singer before I transitioned into directing and I like the poetry of music and the emotional sharing. I don’t like Karaoke because it relegates music to the background. I do like Broadway and folksy sing-a-longs.