What would you do differently to what you do now?
I’d care less about being liked. I’d stand my ground more instead of worrying too much about consensus. I’m old enough to know I have pretty good instincts and I should just follow them. Sometimes I compromise to keep the peace but then I live to regret it.
Who inspires you and why?
Hopefully who ever I’m working with. Someone gave me the advice “always work with people who are better than you.” I always look to someone, a designer, a performer a conductor, to throw out ideas to make me think clearer and work harder.
What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Arrange it so everyone could travel. Moving around, seeing how other people live, understanding them, might make us a little less up ourselves and help us share the planet better.
Favourite holiday destination and why?
The next place I’m going. At the moment, Southern India.
When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I’d drive them up the Bloomfield track to Cooktown for the best fish in chips in the world at the fishing boat wharf.
What are you currently reading?
The Romanovs by Simon Sebag Montefiore. I went to Russia the first time last year and I’m fascinated by the history of that Imperial family. It’s like there’s an unbroken line from ivan the Terrible to Putin.
What are you currently listening to?
The Marriage of Figaro, all day six days a week. I’m directing a production for Opera Australia’s Touring and Outreach wing. Every day is a total bliss out being close to such miraculous music.
Having people sing Mozart at you all day.
What does the future hold for you?
Less work, more travel, South India, Sri Lanka. And read more books, there are still so many to get through. And write a really great play.
Michael has directed Opera Australia’s brand new production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro currently touring to selected venues throughout Australia, including Parramatta’s Riverside Theatres: 19 & 20 August 2016. For more information including touring dates, visit: www.opera.org.au for details.
Image: Michael Gow