Andrea Louise Martin (born January 15, 1947) is an American-Canadian actress and comedienne.
Martin, the oldest of three children, was born in Portland, Maine, of Armenian heritage, in 1947. Her father owned Martins, a grocery store. Her early success was found in Canada. Two of her first prominent roles were in 1973's Cannibal Girls and then as the bookish sorority sister Phyllis in Black Christmas, another Canadian slasher film from 1974. Two years later, she joined then-unknowns John Candy, Dave Thomas, Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara, Harold Ramis and Joe Flaherty on the Canadian sketch comedy television series, SCTV, which was set at fictional television station "Second City Television," or SCTV, in Melonville. Martin most notably portrayed leopard-print-wearing station manager Edith Prickley, whose dealings with the staff, including president/owner Guy Caballero, clueless newscaster Earl Camembert, and washed-up actor Johnny LaRue, helped to provide much of the show’s humor. Her other memorable characterizations included repressed sexologist Dr. Cheryl Kinsey, insecure self-affirmation guru Libby Wolfson, pidgin-tongued janitress Pirini Scleroso, tone-deaf children’s entertainer Mrs. Falbo, Texan curio pitchwoman Edna Boil, and impossibly tight-jeaned Melba, the Disco Queen. Her talent for impersonation was key in her humorous portrayals of such luminaries as Barbra Streisand, Ethel Merman, Arlene Francis, Sally Field, Sophia Loren, Beverly Sills, Lynn Redgrave, Linda Lavin, Bernadette Peters, Liza Minnelli, Connie Francis,Mother Teresa and Indira Gandhi.
Her early stage work was with the improvisational comedy troupe The Second City. In 1992, she made her Broadway debut in the musical My Favorite Year, for which she won the Tony Award, Theatre World Award, and Drama Desk Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical. Additional Broadway credits include Candide (1997) and Oklahoma! (2002)—both of which brought her Tony nominations—and Fiddler on the Roof (2005). She recently performed in Young Frankenstein as Frau Blücher, a role for which she received another Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actress in a musical. Martin left the cast on July 6, 2008, and was replaced by Beth Leavel.
She wrote and performed in the critically acclaimed one-woman show Nude, Nude, Totally Nude in Los Angeles and New York City, where she garnered a 1996 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding One Person Show. Her lengthy theater credits include the leads in The Rose Tattoo and Betty's Summer Vacation, both produced at The Huntington Theatre in Boston. Martin has played Wanda the Word Fairy in numerous short segments on Sesame Street. Star Trek fans may recognize her as one of two actresses to play Ishka, Quark’s iconoclastic mother on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. For her role, she was made up to appear as an older woman although in reality Martin is less than three years older than Armin Shimerman, who played Quark. She only played the role of Ishka once - finding the prosthetics involved to be uncomfortable Martin declined to return, and Cecily Adams was hired to play Ishka in all future appearances.
She has won two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Writing in a Variety or Music Program in 1982 and 1983. She has done considerable voice work in such animated film and television productions such as "Anastasia", Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, The Simpsons (as Apu’s mother), Earthworm Jim, Kim Possible, SpongeBob SquarePants Puss]] & Brother Bear 2.
Her many screen credits include Wag the Dog, All I Want for Christmas, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, The Producers, and the independent smash hit, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, in which she portrayed Aunt Voula, a role she reprised in the short-lived small-screen adaptation.
In 2006, she had a major role in the remake of Black Christmas.
She has two sons, Jack (born 1981) and Joe (born 1983), with ex-husband Bob Dolman, a screenwriter. Through this marriage, she was the sister-in-law of Dolman's sister, actress Nancy, and her husband Martin Short.