Why do you do the job that you do? From the age of 12, I always knew that I wanted to work in the medium of lyric theatre. I love the music, the people and their personalities, the rapport with the audience. I’ve never had a desire to do anything else.
Who has influenced you most professionally? As a conductor, other conductors: Sir Charles Mackerras and Georg Tintner were extraordinarily supportive. As an accompanist, Geoffrey Parsons.
Is there any other profession that you would have liked to have followed? None.
What is your idea of perfect happiness? Conducting a work I love at the theatre on a night when everything falls perfectly into place for an enthusiastic and receptive audience.
If you could have dinner with a historical figure, who would it be? Mozart.
What is your greatest extravagance? I am an indefatigable purchaser of scores and CDs. My apartment groans with it all. Even the kitchen has a cupboard full of music.
One thing you regret is… Probably being entrusted with a lot of responsibility so early in my career. I wish things had progressed a bit slower so I could learn more, but I was young and enthusiastic and why say no when something nice gets offered.
If you could have an opera character as a friend, who would it be? Rodrigo, Marchese di Posa in Verdi’s Don Carlo – a man of the utmost integrity and honesty.
Who or what is the love of your life? Music.
What are you optimistic about? The future.
You would like to devote more time to… Practising the piano. Studying solo piano repertoire once again has been hugely satisfying. Don’t worry – you’ll never get to hear it!
What is your favourite food? Ice cream.
|Two of Andrew Greene's Cavalier King|
Charles spaniels in Der Rosenkavalier
What is your most treasured possession? Possessions rather. My three Cavalier King Charles spaniels – Darcy, Cosmo and Sooty. The first two triumphed in the last revival of Der Rosenkavalier (how convenient that Strauss named the opera after them!).
Which is the opera that got you hooked? The Magic Flute.
Which opera do you never need to hear again? The Phantom of the Opera.
If there’s one quote that really speaks to you it’s… VOLTAIRE: I will defend to the death your right to express your opinion, even though I totally disagree with what you say.
What is your idea of misery? Income tax preparation time.
You still hope to…Become a better musician and human being.
Which characteristics do you most admire in others? Friendship, honesty.
You feel guilty when you think about…The amount of wine I consumed last night at dinner.
What type of holiday do you most enjoy? One in a city where I can see a lot of performances, particularly concerts.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? To stop being an insomniac.
|The Magic Flute got Andrew Greene|
hooked on opera
Who is your favourite band? The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra – delightful people who play excellently.
You spend too much money on… Scores and CDs.
Your greatest achievement has been...Staying employed in this industry for as long as I have. Life is either feast or famine as far as work is concerned. It’s been a feast for a long while now, but famine is never far away.
The book everyone loved but you could not finish was...The Lord of the Rings.
What is your favourite kitchen appliance? The microwave oven.