Collier, Marie, Australian soprano; b. Ballarat, April 16, 1926; d. in a fall from a window in London, Dec. 7, 1971. She studied with Wielaert and Gertrude Johnson in Melbourne, where she made her operatic debut as Santuzza. She then completed her training in Milan with Ugo Benvenuti Giusti (1955–56). In 1956 she made her first appearance at London’s Covent Garden as Musetta, where she sang regularly until her death; she also appeared at the Sadler’s Wells Opera in London. From 1965 to 1968 she sang at the San Francisco Opera. On March 17, 1967, she created the role of Christine Mannon in Levy’s Mourning Becomes Electra at her Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y.; she remained on its roster until 1968, and then returned for the 1969–70 season. Collier was highly regarded for her performances of contemporary operas, excelling in such roles as Kát’a Kabanová, Emilia Marty in The Makropulos Affair, Jenûfa, Marie in Wozzeck, Katerina Izmailova, Walton’s Cressida, and Hecuba in Tippett’s King Priam, which she created.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire