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& S. Zarodnansky
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After a brief introduction by Emily Barth of Make it So! Productions, Kate Mulgrew arrived on stage to many cheers and much applause:
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Thank you very much. This is a little overwhelming. Please. Thank you. Thank you so much.
I'd like to say to those of you who are from Cleveland, that I can now say, with some conviction; that I'm home at last. There are a lot a ways to know that you're finally home. You find your husband in your bedroom. In your bed. The young girls helping you cook in the kitchen don't have bumps on their forehead. And if they have any bumps at all, they're the normal kind. Catch phrases like "just do it" are followed by "or I'll kill you." So I know I'm home.
But the seminal moment of coming home happened on Wednesday night when I watched my season finale. Thank you. (In response to more applause) With my lovely step-daughters and my beloved husband. And I said to myself this will be easy. I'm prepared. I spent weeks saying, "I'm fine. I'm relieved. It's over. Now I can live my life. I have mixed feelings, but I'm going on. This is great."
I cooked a meal - a facsimile of a meal, and we sat down, and I started to cry and I did not stop. And here I go again. And every time one of my beloveds appeared on the screen, Robbie, Roxann, Bob Picardo, John Ethan - my soul - I fell apart immediately. So what happened, of course, on Wednesday night, was the very brutal finish to something that has meant clearly an enormous amount to me. It has redefined me in many ways as an actress; as a mother; and as a human being. But, when I went to bed that night - and by the way, I slept for an entire day after that night - that's allowed, isn't it? I said to myself, and to my husband, that's a bit like talking to myself, isn't it? I said, "I'm proud. I'm deeply proud. I set the bar high for Janeway and I did not deviate from day one. (Much applause from the audience)
I love this character and everything she allowed me to do. She's a better woman than I am, but she allowed me to put flesh on her skeleton with my humanity, with my laughter, with my flaws, with my own particular and peculiar kind of courage, and with my passion for other people.
Every day was a challenge. How am I going to take her deeper? What nuances, what subtleties can I endow her with today? Is this going to be a 15, 16, 17-hour day? Towards the end, I was putting in 85 hours a week when I was playing both Janeways and I was in heaven.
The great struggle in these last seven years has been more on a personal level. Very hard for my young sons to experience their entire adolescence watching their mother in the captain's seat. But as I said in the beginning, "Kids, if I can seduce a million other young boys, I'm sure I can work a little magic on you." "No way, Mom. You can forget it."
But the chapter itself, as it comes to a close, I think is greater than I expected it would be. And I am certainly left feeling far more vulnerable than I expected to be, and there are certain things I feel that I must say to this particular group. This is call "Women of Star Trek" so I'm going to appeal now to the women and then I will to the men, whom I adore as you know! But let me deal with the women first.
I want every woman in this room - and if she has a daughter at her side, I want that daughter to know - that without you, without this support, this extraordinarily strong foundation, your unconditional belief and fidelity in Janeway as the first female captain, this series would not have lasted. And I cannot thank you enough now or ever for that fidelity. (Much applause)
You know, women die for men. They do insane and bizarre things for men, don't they? They travel thousands of miles. They have thousands of children. They become alcoholics. They do anything to get their man. But it has been my personal experience that there's nothing like a woman for allegiance. Women are emotional, and woman are occasionally changeable. Woman are multi-layered and complicated and it's true, gentlemen, women can be very difficult to handle, but in my life, they have been the one true constant source of love, comfort and joy and I say to every woman in this group, as I do to the entire country, and all the viewership who are woman, without you, it simply couldn't have been done, and it could not have been done with the same happiness that I have experienced for 7 years and so I thank you. (Much applause)
I want to thank your male counterparts for having faith in me. In the beginning, I'm sure that was tough, especially for you young ones, right? Coming into 'hormonal hell.' What is that strange woman with that funny-looking bun doing sitting in that chair? How can I possibly trust her to run this ship? I hope I didn't let you down. I tried not to. And to your fathers, I say double thanks, because obviously, you allowed your sons to watch it, didn't you?
I have two very small acknowledgements that I must make here. The first is to my beloved husband, Tim Hagan. I want to tell you one little story about this man, who is the great love of my life. It's taken me many, many years to nail him, but I finally did it. We were married over two and a half years ago. He has spent all of that time executing a masterpiece of choreography and love, visiting me on the set of Star Trek: Voyager every 10 days for two and half years. Getting up with me at 4:30 a.m. Coming on to the set. Bothering every crew member until they couldn't see straight! Standing at my side for 15, 16, 17 hours. This he did for two and half years. For this, I pledge my undying devotion. (At this point she looks off stage for her husband) Oh, he's already making deal in the corner, let's not interrupt him!
I don't know if you are aware that my husband is very active politically. He has great fire in the belly, as they say and I'm just curious to know, in this particular fan base, if my husband were to pursue…a particular direction, how many of you I could invite to my party? Could I see a show of hands? (A positive response from the audience!) Thank you...
And I have one more acknowledgement and then I'd love to take questions. There is an extraordinary person in this room. There's a rumor floating around Cleveland that I married into a large family. I'd like to dispel that rumor and say that it is a gross understatement. I have the largest family ever contrived to marry into - the mother of whom - the matriarch of whom - I believe is present. She gave birth to 14 children and she gave to me the greatest gift of all, my husband, Tim Hagan. And there she is - Ada DiLoreto Hagan. Let's hear it for her. (Applause) Thank you, Ada. God bless you. You're so far away. You ought to come up. Somebody bring my mother-in-law up so she can see.
All right now, now I'd like to take some questions if I may. Would you like to ask me anything? And the more personal the better, I love them personal. Who's up? Who's up?
Do you have a microphone, sweetheart?
”No, but I can yell!”
Kate Mulgrew: Well, come on, I think you ought to come over closer and yell it out.
Kate Mulgrew: They ought to give you a microphone. Here's the mike, darling. Come on up here. You start.
"First off, you are absolutely gorgeous and I love you."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you.
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, Ada's coming up. Wait 'til my mother-in-law is situated properly. (To Mrs. Hagan) Hello, how are you? Can we get a chair please for this divine. Yes, come up on stage and then you can answer questions with me. (Mrs. Hagan arrives on stage). Look at this extraordinary woman. I don't think even she knows how many children she has!
All right, let me take your questions.
"I'm sure you've heard this a million times, but what was your absolute favorite moment of being Janeway."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, it's so tough. Seven years.
"Just a moment, not the end of it."
Kate Mulgrew: The first. On the bridge. 'Engage.' You have no idea what that day was like. Those of you who are real devotees will remember that Genevieve Bujold had this job originally. And she had it for all of 20 hours but that's beside the point. They brought me in, I was shot out of the canon. I was very nervous. There were 20 suits standing in front of me on the bridge. I mean you could have cut that tension with a knife. And Rick Kolbe, who was directing the pilot, said something to me as I stood off-stage that I'll never forget and they gave me my first wings. He said, "This is your living room, baby. Take it." And when I walked on, I just did. And when I sat in the chair, I thought I would not do what Genevieve did. I would not say "Engage." (pronounces it ‘en francais’) That might be a little confusing, I thought, to those Americanos out there watching, so I said, "Engage." And that was a great moment. Thank you. Thank you. Yes?
"Um, I'm going to try to get through this without breaking up."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh darling, don't, because I'll have to go with you and it'll be a free for all.
"This picture that I have right here..."
Kate Mulgrew: Yes.
"Two years ago, I was in a deep state of depression and I was trying to find anything to cling to, anything to keep me alive and I looked and I saw this picture of you and you looked so hopeful and you looked so happy and I thought, if I died now, I would never get to meet you. And here I am and I..."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, come up here on this stage right now. And don't make me cry. I can't stand it. I'm going to sign that for you. And anything else that you want. She's done me in, now. What's your name, first of all.
Kate Mulgrew: Eve. Very important name. Can't give up with a name like that. Are you going to stand in the line? Are you? You don't have to do that. Do you have a pen? We'll take care of it. I'll take care of this, Eve. All right? And I'll give this to you, all right? Let's give her a hand. May I give this to you, Ada, to hold onto? Isn't that sweet? Ask me, where else in the world, as an actress, you can have that conceivable influence? It's overwhelming. It's overwhelming. It's a great, great privilege. Yes?
"Kate, um, two things. One, I just want to point out that several of my friends and I are here - and yes - to the people of Coffee Nebula - I am turning into a basket of goo. We're here to proudly say we're part of the 'House of Janeway'. We're, as the back says, not a club, it's an attitude."
Kate Mulgrew: Ohhhh.
"And I really feel that I need to present something to the Number One Janeway Fan in America and I think that is Kate Mulgrew."
Kate Mulgrew: Aww.
"So if you don't mind." (She gives her a “House of Janeway T-shirt)
Kate Mulgrew: 'House of Janeway' There you go. Oh, 'Wednesdays with Kathryn - The House of Janeway. Thank you very, very much.
"I have one actual question."
Kate Mulgrew: Yes, of course.
"Speaking of science fiction in general and Star Trek in particular, we often talk about how this genre is not only known for its Star Trek conventions, but known for introducing young people into the scientific discipline. Did you feel at all strange to be told that you not only had the mantel of Kirk and Picard, but you had to read Jules Verne and bring everybody into the 21st Century in terms of NASA and the sciences?"
Kate Mulgrew: It was a bit daunting, but I like a challenge. And, um, it stimulated me to learn, you know? Science fiction was foreign to me and I would have to be very honest and tell you science was, by in large, foreign to me when I got this job. But I studied. The first lady invited me to Washington in the first season to meet with a group of scientists and honor women in science and then I said to myself, 'Well, if this is going to be done well, I'm going to have to take it rather seriously." And so I have. I mean there's a great deal ahead of me. But I see what wide and really extraordinary impact Star Trek has on burgeoning scientists so I do take it seriously and I thank you for that question and I thank you for these gifts. Yes! Another house of Janeway.
"You're very welcome and I am a native of Cleveland."
Kate Mulgrew: You are what?
"I'm a native Clevelander."
Kate Mulgrew: You are?
Kate Mulgrew: Good for you. Are you related to me in any way?
"I'd like to be. I'm also part Irish."
Kate Mulgrew: Okay.
"And I adore you."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you.
"I've admired your work ever since watching you on 'Ryan's Hope'"
Kate Mulgrew: You've aged both of us. Thank you.
"And speaking of impact, I'd love to know, who has influenced you?”
Kate Mulgrew: Role models?
Kate Mulgrew: That's often asked of me. Creatively, two people: My mentor and my teacher, Stella Adler, who unfortunately now is dead, and my mother, who said to me, "You're not going to be an actress, you're going to be a great actress. Therefore you have to be very, very serious about it and get to work. That was at age 12. So I have my mother and Stella to thank. Outside of those two, I think it was all deeply personal.
"Well, you've been absolutely successful."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Thank you very much. I'm not sure about that, but I've still got some way to go. Thank you. Hi. I like the wardrobe! (To a young woman dressed in a Janeway costume) Looking good!
"I just wanna know - do you even like coffee?"
Kate Mulgrew: Love it! I love coffee! Do you? How many people do you think I've turned on to coffee in the last 7 years? How many addicts am I responsible for in this room? That way you gotta cut it with a little wine in the evening. Thank you. Yes?
Kate Mulgrew: Hi.
"You're middle name is so beautiful. I just wondered where it came from."
Kate Mulgrew: My real name?
"Your middle name."
Kate Mulgrew: My middle name, Kiernan, is my mother's maiden name. Which is an old Irish tradition. Thank you.
Kate Mulgrew: Hi, Princess. How are you?
Kate Mulgrew: Good.
"I just really wanna know why you and Chakotay never hooked up."
Kate Mulgrew: Sex. Sex. Sex. It's everybody's raison d’etre and you don't fool me. Here's why, okay. I've said it a million times and everybody goes 'Oh I don't wanna hear it, it's too boring,' but it's the truth. When I took this job 52 years ago, I was still of childbearing age, right? I was 38. And I said to myself - I don't think it's a good idea to be dropping ‘trou' on the bridge or the ready room with my first office when I've got 13, 14, 15 year-old girls watching this program. What's good for the goose is not necessarily good for the gander. I said, let's just take this easy. When I have aged a little bit, which I certainly have done, and gravity has had it's way with me, then we'll have a little romance which she successfully had with a hologram. Anyway, does that answer your question? I needed a first officer I could count on and you really can't count on someone if they're thinking about something else all the time.
"I just think it's a cop out."
Kate Mulgrew: Lift that up because I can’t… yes, lift the mike up to your face.
“I just think it’s a cop out.”
Kate Mulgrew: You do? Well, what can I say? (laughing) Ah, she's very young. Talk to me when you're 60 about cop outs.
"Thanks so much. You're an inspiration to us all. I mean all of us…"
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Very nice from a gentleman.
"What inspired you to become an actress? Why did you? And (are) any other family members in it, and number two, what do you plan to do in the next 10 or 15 years, are you going to direct, are you going to be involved in the new Star Trek? What's the story?"
Kate Mulgrew: Did everybody get that question? Two questions in one. I'll answer the latter part of that question first. I'll just point to the latter part of that question. (She points to Tim Hagan) I’m going to be married. I'm not such a fool as to not know that I've been given a great gift in this marriage and I'm going to live that, right? Which isn't to suggest for a moment that I'm going to give up acting. That would be a horrible lie, wouldn't it, darling? Ah, yes, I'll pay for this later on, but let me just have fun now. I will go back to the theater, which was my first love and I will do that, I suspect, in very short order, but my husband comes first and we need to see what he determines within the next couple of months. To answer the first part of your question, what inspired me to become an actress, I don't know. Has anybody ever been to the cornfields of Iowa? “Yes” (from several members of the audience.)
Kate Mulgrew: And does that answer your question?! I was one of eight children. My mother is a painter, My father was a businessman and a politician. It was an eclectic, dramatic, complicated household. It was, uh, very, very unusual, and we were encouraged to be unorthodox in our paths. I graduated very early from high school. I was out of the house by 16 and was just devoted to it from the time I was twelve. Worked hard. Worked as a cook and a waitress. I tended bar at 14 - I don't know if my father knows that. That's was I was doing to subsidize my summer workshops and apprenticeships all over the country. So I did. It's all I ever wanted and essentially, it's all I still want. My work has been my salvation and as Stella used to say to me, it's the only thing that will lift you up in the end, and indeed, it has lifted me up so I hope that answers your question.
"Thank you very much."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Yes? Oh, handsome men in a row. I like this.
"Hi Kate." (Gentleman with a very deep voice)
Kate Mulgrew: Hi. Hi!
"I'm charmed to death to be up here asking you a question."
Kate Mulgrew: My heavens, do you hear that voice?
"My heart's up in my throat."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, what is your question?
"First, good job on 'Gargoyles' as Anastasia/Titania. Good job on the animated Batman series as Red Claw."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you.
"My question is, on 'Voyager', Jeri Taylor wrote the blueprint of the Janeway character. Do you feel that her successors kept up her legacy pretty well? 'Cause I noticed some distinct differences."
Kate Mulgrew: Do I feel… you'll have to articulate that. Are you saying do I feel that what she wrote about Janeway honored Janeway?
"She pretty much wrote the blue print."
Kate Mulgrew: That's right.
"Hoosier, strong, assertive and then as seasons rolled around, you were breaking more rules; ratings demand that or something. Chakotay had to reign you in a couple of times."
Kate Mulgrew: I let him, honey. You gotta throw 'em a crumb every now and then! Yeah, she wrote the blueprint. But I don't want to sound remotely arrogant, because without her blueprint, this would not have come in to fruition, but I would say, essentially, that I threw it out as the years evolved. A marriage takes place between the writing staff and the actress. That's the evolution. That's the relationship that counts. When Jeri left, I still had to very much apply myself to that dynamic and that's what I did and when this love affair between Mulgrew and Janeway really took off, the writers allowed themselves, I think, the confidence and the liberty to take off with it so I hope that answers your question.
"You did a fantastic job reading her audio novel, Mosaic."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, thank you. Thank you very much. Yes, sir?
"Hi, Kate. How are you?"
Kate Mulgrew: I'm good. How are you?
"Actually, I have a couple of questions - one for you and one for your mother-in-law."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, well, let's do my mother-in-law first.
"Actually, it's just a comment. I just like to say, God Bless You – 14 children, I think everybody needs to give you a hand! One more other thing, how does it feel being a Trekkie?"
Kate Mulgrew: I wanna see… I wanna see how this Roman Catholic answers this one. 'How does she feel, being a Trekkie?' (She asks her mother in law)
Ada Hagan Laughs.
Kate Mulgrew: That’s what I thought.
Ada Hagan: I love being the mother-in-law of a Trekkie!
Kate Mulgrew: You're going to have to go to two masses this weekend, Ada.
"Kate, just a last other thing, I think if, uh, this is for Tim - Tim, we want you as our governor. I'll become one of the first volunteers. Kate, I love you. You're the best."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Thank you so much.
"First off, Kate, I think it probably was subconscious. I saw you 3 years ago at Bellevue and next thing I knew, I became a driver for Greyhound. So in a way, I've become the Captain of my own starship."
Kate Mulgrew: Bravo! And Greyhound will never be the same.
"Now I know Janeway has a love for dogs, so I would like to present you with a dog - it's a greyhound."
Kate Mulgrew: Because my other dog, Janeway's dog, Molly died. This is a greyhound? It's the tiniest greyhound I've ever seen. Bring him up here. Does it have a name?
Kate Mulgrew: No? Ferocious Beast. Thank you. Yes, darling.
Kate Mulgrew: How are you? Oh, this girl is sooo pretty. Come on up here, let them see how pretty you are. How old are you, sweetheart? She's almost 11. Isn't she divine? What a face.
"Me and my mom made this for you and… we made it for you because we love you so much."
Kate Mulgrew: Aww, sweetie, what's your name?
Kate Mulgrew: Candace. What is this, sweetie, a quilt? Aww, it's a blanket. Very pretty. Is this the mother? Look at the hair on these two. Wait a minute. I've got a dog in one hand, a mike in the other and I've got a blanket here. Ada, I need your help. Please take this creature. (She hands Ada the greyhound) Shall I read the card or shall I just open the blanket. I’m going to open the blanket. Oh, Favorite Voyager Moments - Look at this. Isn't that great? Let's give 'em a hand. It's marvelous. Thank you. Thank you very much. What a beautiful mother and daughter team. Gorgeous. Ada…I don't want to ruin this. What should I… (She puts blanket on floor) Ada, would you like to lie down? All right, let me get this…
"I'm really nervous, um."
Kate Mulgrew: That's ok.
"I just have more of a comment, than I have a question. My family is not exactly the greatest family in the world and my life is not exactly the greatest, but I was looking for a role model when I was around 11 because I was getting into serious trouble and I found it in you and I just want to tell you that you're my role model."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you.
"And that I don't' know how I could have gotten through half my teenage years without you and without Star Trek: Voyager and it seems so pathetic, but it's just…"
Kate Mulgrew: It doesn't seem a bit pathetic and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart.
"I just wanted to say that. I had to say that."
Kate Mulgrew: May I say something to you? I'm sorry if this sound a bit intrusive, but I will say it. If Janeway is, in fact, or I am your role model, I would say this to you - Life is choice and really we can't be happy in our lives if we're not happy with our families and we're not happy with ourselves and it takes a lot of courage, I know, to make those choices. If you really to revere what Kathryn Janeway would do…That’s the first thing she’d do - call her mother.
"It's not that it was Captain Janeway. Captain Janeway introduced me to you and I just have to say thank you for being you.”
Kate Mulgrew: I want to thank you.
“And also… I love you."
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Thank you very much. Live and be happy. Be happy. Go find it. You can have it.
Kate Mulgrew: Yes, darling. Ah. Love the wardrobe!
"Thank you. I finally grew into. Had it for awhile. It's a little big. I'd like to say...I forgot what I was going to say..."
Kate Mulgrew: You forgot?
"First of all, this is Carrie (previous questioner) and I'm proud to know her. We met each other this morning, talking about how excited we were to meet you. I'm Katie."
Kate Mulgrew: What's your name. Wait a minute. Wait a minute, honey. What's your name?
Kate Mulgrew: Katie. This is Katie. Okay.
"And, um, and we just want to say … Sorry. Sorry. We just want to say thank you because you've taken what you do seriously and some people think it's just a show and some actors just think it's a show, but you really do inspire people and you've been my role model since I was 10, you and my mom. And my mom will think it's the biggest compliment in the world that I'm putting her in a paragraph with you, but seriously, I'd like to say thank you for taking it seriously; Thank you for enjoying Star Trek."
Kate Mulgrew: How gratifying. Is this the beginning of a great friendship? Promise me you'll try. There's nothing better in life than a great friendship.
Kate Mulgrew: Oh the cocktail party. I’ll see you at the cocktail party. Thank you ladies. You see why I love women? Can you imagine men doing…? (Lowers voice in imitation of a male) I just wanted to say, I think you did okay. There's a doll. Yes, sweetheart?
"I came here for my 10th birthday and I turned down a birthday party because I wanted to meet you so much"
Kate Mulgrew: Let's give her a hand for that! A birthday party? Thank you for coming! What's your name?
Kate Mulgrew: Well, I think the least we can do is...shall we.....(Kate leads audience in singing 'Happy Birthday')
Kate Mulgrew: What do you have?
"I wrote a page for you because of how much you mean to me."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, sweetheart, thank you. What little doll you are. You're going to have a birthday party tonight when you go home, aren't you? Or tomorrow? Right Mom?
(Lindsay’s mother indicates no birthday party)
Kate Mulgrew: Happy birthday to Lindsay. Thank you darling. Father and daughter.
"Father and daughter."
Kate Mulgrew: In uniform.
"In uniform. She became a little Star Trek fan with me."
Kate Mulgrew: She's a first season Janeway, that one. See the little bun?
"She uh…I grew up being a Star Trek fan and watching Voyager, it became a Daddy/Daughter kind of thing and I have been waiting for you to come in this area somewhere just so I could get her to meet you because she has become… got the attitude of Janeway."
Kate Mulgrew: Wait a minute. Wait a minute. Just what is your implication?!
"She's headstrong and she knows how to take charge of things."
Kate Mulgrew: Is it 'Daddy, get to your quarters, now!'?
"She outranks me today. I've only got 3 and she’s got 4 pips."
Kate Mulgrew: What is your name, darling?
"My name is John."
Kate Mulgrew: No, I meant your daughter.
"This is Amberly..."
Kate Mulgrew: Again, gender differentiation. What is your name, sweetheart? Amberly? What an unusual and beautiful name. Well, thank you for supporting me and Voyager.
"...and I was wondering if she could step right up there and I can get a picture."
Kate Mulgrew: You hop right up on this stage now. Come right up these stairs, quickly. Let me put this down. Amberly. I never heard of anything like that. It's lovely, isn't it? See? (indicates the child’s bun!) First season. See?
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. That's unusual, father and daughter. Keep up the good work. Yes ma'am?
”I got a couple of things. First of all, I just wanted to know, did you personally ever see Janeway, especially in earlier episodes, as leading her crew and ship as more of a dictatorship rather that as a democracy?”
Kate Mulgrew: Answer for me.
Kate Mulgrew: No. No!
"She's always a little headstrong. 'I'm the captain. I said so. This is the way it's gonna be.'”
Kate Mulgrew: That's not a dictatorship. That's the height of femininity. There's the distinction. What's the second part of your provocative question?
”This part is actually not a question. A friend of mine, whose name is Dave, can't be here today and he wanted me to tell you Hi."
Kate Mulgrew: Oh good. Hi Dave. Thank you.
”Number one, I want to start a wave cheer for you.”
Kate Mulgrew: A wave cheer? Like they do at baseball games? This is rather daunting. A wave cheer… just pretend I’m Alex Rodrigues! (Boos and feedback from the audience) What are they saying? I thought that was correct....Where are you going? My mother-in-law is leaving the stage. Ada, thank you. Find a seat. Unbelievable. I would just like to ask this one question - Who in this room knows anybody who's had 14 children
(From the audience)'My mother had 12'!
Kate Mulgrew: Boy, I am in Cleveland. How remarkable and how great.
”There was two other things.”
Kate Mulgrew: What are they?
”Second, when TV Guide did the 'Sexiest Women of Sci-Fi', they left you out.”
Kate Mulgrew: I was working.
”And the third thing, a request: Would you 'strike the pose'? The hands on hips.”
Kate Mulgrew: (Does as requested to much cheering and applause) Thank you. Picard did not strike that pose too often, did he? But then he didn't have the bun problem either. Yes?
”Good afternoon. Thank you for seven years. ...It's been wonderful and thank you...my mother is a huge fan of yours from your Ryan's Hope days and she named me Ryan from that show. I'd be Mary if I were a girl. Twenty-five years ago, where did you think you would be?”
Kate Mulgrew: Twenty-five years ago?
”Starting out, where did you think you would be today?”
Kate Mulgrew: I certainly didn't think I'd be here, but I'm awfully glad I am. And I think that… that's the beauty of the whole thing. The serendipity of it. The fortuitousness of it. The chance of it all. In my wildest dreams, I didn't think I'd be a Captain on a Star Trek series. I suppose any actress could say that, right, without fault? But I think it's a damn good place to be, don't you?
”Thank you for seven years and I'm incredibly envious of your husband.”
Kate Mulgrew: Now wait a minute, don't run away... How old are you?
Kate Mulgrew: 24. Do you have a girlfriend?
Kate Mulgrew: You don't? Handsome strapping thing like you? I've got a lot of nieces, don't I? We'll work something out before the end of the day. Okay. Thank you very much. Thank you.
”I just want you to know that I’ve admired your work from the beginning. And there’s no one who could have played Mrs. Columbo, except for you.”
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you.
“And I don’t think anyone else could have played Captain Janeway, but yourself. My question is we, as the fans, of course, want to see a movie of Voyager. If that happens, will you accept the job, and if it doesn’t happen, will you bless us with the same thing that George does, which is continue your missions on video or cassette tapes, like the audio that George does for Captain Sulu?”
Kate Mulgrew: I learned a long time ago, never say never and never say die. A Voyager movie would be, I think, a very compelling idea, but it’s purely speculative at this point. If and when it becomes a reality, I think I would take a very serious look at that. It’s hard to say good bye to a character you love this much, and I hope that I have not. Is that sufficient?
You’ve got to see something though, ladies and gentlemen. If Chakotay had dressed in like fashion, I may have had to call him into my ready room. I’m going to bring you on the stage just so the audience can see you. You! Come on up. (Man comes up on stage) How I would have designed the wardrobe. Leather pants, Baby! Love those.
Is that your son?
“Yes it is.”
Kate Mulgrew: Oh, God. Are you going to ask me something? (child shakes his head – no) Your son is very smart. Come on up here and have a picture taken with me. What a doll. How old are you, honey? Six? What’s your name? Is it Sidney? What’s your name? It’s… Jimmy! Jimmy!
The next speaker told Kate of her personal tragedies – and Kate responded kindly and sympathetically. She presented Kate with two teddy bears representing herself and Kate.
Kate Mulgrew: Life is awfully hard, isn’t it? I don’t know how we do it, but we do. It’s all about who you love and how you love them. I’m convinced of that.
“… Just came up for a picture, but I thought I’d say hi and just …”
Kate Mulgrew: Oh pleeease!! Don’t you just love men?
Kate Mulgrew: Yes?
“You’re witty, you’re gracious… would you like to come over for dinner?
Kate Mulgrew: I thought you’d never ask! We’re free tonight! Can I bring my fourteen brothers and sisters in law?
“Sure! Can you find your way to Painesville?”
Kate Mulgrew: I’m sure we can!
“I too would like to give you a small gift. I would also like to ask you to give one to Roxann Dawson. Thank you very much for Janeway…”
Kate Mulgrew: Of couse I would. She's a great pal of mine. Thank you very much. Roxann are you here? (When someone says she isn't) Oh, she told me 'I'll be there to see you'.
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you, thank you very much. People are so generous.
“I wanted to ask you…I don't know if you're aware of it, but you have such a distinctive voice. Did that cause you any prejudice in Hollywood in getting roles?”
Kate Mulgrew: You mean, were they auditioning me for male roles? I've heard about my voice all my life, but, thanks be to God Almighty, I can't hear my own voice so I don't know what it is, but I suspect it must have an original enough quality to find this remark is often made. And no, in fact my voice has stood me in very good stead over the years.
“It’s a very strong voice.”
Kate Mulgrew: Strong, yes, it helped me. No bimbo roles, right? That's true. You know. You just couldn't get away with a bimbo role with a voice like this, could ya? 'Yeah, honey'... it doesn't work. Hi! How are you?
A young woman tells Kate that she has inspired her to strive to become an actress. “I saw you. I watched your career… that’s the kind of person I want to be as an actor…thanks for inspiring me…”
Kate Mulgrew: What a great thing to say. Thank you. You’ve made my day. How great. Good luck to you. Don’t give up. Be strong. Be passionate. Be disciplined. Be driven. And stay away from boys!
Kate Mulgrew: Hi!
“I’m a teacher of history and religious studies and you know how some people have used the original Star Trek series as commentary on U.S. involvement in Vietnam at that time as the Prime Directive, and I was wondering what you thought of Voyager’s social and political messages for today and what values or ideals are taught by that series in particular?”
Kate Mulgrew: It takes a very erudite man to come up with this question, doesn’t it? And heartwarming to me. Obviously, and you and I should sit down and talk about this – this was the most compelling aspect of Voyager. From suicide to the violation of the Prime Directive to save an alien species, the Vidiians, who are organ snatchers – need that to survive. Every single issue is topical and timely I found. Very provocative, very challenging. The essence, not only of Voyager, but of really good science fiction. And I hope I am not amiss in saying I think that Voyager, of all the Star Trek series, was particularly faithful in that regard. We attacked a lot of good social issues. We attacked them with fervor and with resolution. So… I hope you agree. Thank you. Thank you. Yes? Hi, how are you?
“I first wanted to thank you, on behalf of young people, both men and women for portraying a role model to believe in.”
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you.
“Second, I just wondered from all the controversy, which was your favorite Janeway hairdo?”
Kate Mulgrew: You know, they just couldn't figure it out, could they? They tried. They tried to drive me crazy. I'm not kidding you. The bloody hair. From the bun to the 'shunkah' to the 'hockah'... I mean Patrick Stewart had it easy. A little bit of powder...and eighteen hours… nothing! And you know why they did that? I think now, in hindsight, about the hair. I think they were so nervous about putting a woman in the captain’s seat because, of course, the franchise was very successful with men before, that they applied themselves to a symbol rather than the reality of their consternation which was can this actress pull this thing off - and they picked the hair. And it was really diabolical and utterly boring and do I have a favorite? No. I wish I'd shaved my head from day one. But thank you for your question. The hair…. Really, don’t you find all that stuff … you might be interested in this, the ladies in this room. I had a very hard time on Voyager. Cosmetically. I can’t stand to be touched like that with the ‘sheek and the hoook and the sheek… fifty two times a day. Right? Touching. Tim… true or false? Come on up here sweetheart. Come on up. My husband… I want my husband to address this. Because he watched. I couldn’t bear it. That alone is a discipline I hope to God I never have to…
(Tim Hagan arrives on stage)
Kate Mulgrew: Tell them honey. Tell them.
Tim Hagan: I don’t know what the hell you’re talking about! You know, I didn’t know anything about this, by the way. As she pointed out, I go to these… I’d go to work with her. I don’t know why, but I’d go to work … and I can’t tell you… for those of us who’ve never been involved in this, how hard they work and how diligent they are. But the makeup drove me crazy and they weren’t touching me. Might have been interesting, but in any event that makeup and that combing of the hair – each one of those little scenes you would watch that were ten or fifteen seconds at a time – then they’d come back on and do the makeup again, do the hair again. It drove me crazy. But I fell in love with her anyhow so…
Kate Mulgrew: Did anyone have any questions for my dear husband while he’s up here? You do? Yes? Come here honey she wants to take a picture.
“Two years ago I had the opportunity to thank you for saving my life. This was at the ICC gala.”
Kate Mulgrew: Oh really? At the Copacabana.
“And I didn’t have the words to thank you for everything you’ve done for me. So…”
Kate Mulgrew: How beautiful. Come up here. (The woman presents Kate with a framed picture). Can you see it? It’s a rather steamy embrace. How are you? That was a pretty marvelous event, wasn’t it? My dear friend isn’t doing so well. Thank you… thank you. (Tim shows Kate the picture again) Oh… It’s my husband! Yes darling… oh… oh… yes! Uh huh! Come here honey.
“Actually this is for you. I want him to stand here for that. I had a chance, working in trauma, to see your influence on people first hand with traumazation. It’s amazing the scope of influence that you had as yourself or as the persona of Captain Janeway. What I want to know is…us… as fans… how we have changed you?”
Kate Mulgrew: I told you when I began, I couldn’t have done this without you. And because I did it my entire life has changed.
“I think what I’m looking for is what are you taking with you? As you continue the next chapter, what, from us, are you taking with you?”
Kate Mulgrew: I’ll tell the truth. One thing, more importantly than all the rest… it’s numerous, the accounting of the virtues of this fandom. Generosity. Of spirit and of person. To a man and to a woman, I’ve seen it over and over and over again. And if you’re generous of spirit… that’s why you’re such a wonderful audience.
“Kate! Kate! I have a question for Tim.”
Kate Mulgrew: Yes sir.
“If you move forward enough in your political career what’s your thought about putting a little bit more money towards NASA, towards space exploration. Because as of right now…as of right now…”
Tim Hagan: I’m only running for governor here, pal!
“What would you do? How would you vote if it came to a vote and it said do we give more money to space exploration. Or do we not give money to space exploration.”
Kate Mulgrew: That's a good question. Does everybody understand the question? Answer…
Tim Hagan: Would I give more money to space, or wouldn’t I give more. What the hell do you think I’m going to answer at this convention!!!?
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you…very good question! We heard you here, baby!
“Good afternoon ma’am. I’m a military officer myself in the Royal Australian Air Force.”
Kate Mulgrew: How do you do!
“And I just wanted to let you know that another group of people that you’re a role model for and that’s people like me who command, and in fact some of my colleagues in the U.S. Air Force and I have actually started a mantra, which is ‘what would Janeway do?’ if we have to make a tough…”
Kate Mulgrew: Really!?
“Sometimes we might do the opposite, but we still think about it.”
Kate Mulgrew: (laughing) You mean generally speaking you would do the opposite of…?
“Sometimes. My question is from a leader’s point of view, the big question in Voyager is… why didn’t Janeway ever promote Harry Kim?”
Kate Mulgrew: I did! But I waited for the seventh season finale! Because. He got himself into a lot of trouble!
“So did Tom.”
Kate Mulgrew: Tom. Married man, child on the way. Thank you. Thank you very much. Highly gratifying! Thank you. Those Australians are terrific. They are, aren’t they, Hon? Yes ma’am? Oh…
“I’m trying so hard not to cry.”
Kate Mulgrew: Don’t cry… put the mike down.
“I’ve waited over five years to say this to you…but you saved my life.”
Kate Mulgrew: How did I do that darling?
The young woman explains that during a deep depression she had watched ‘Death Wish’, and when Janeway said “I like this life, you might too” she realized that she couldn’t go through with her planned suicide because Captain Janeway would not have approved.
Kate Mulgrew: You’re right. It’s not that Captain Janeway would not have approved of suicide, your word was much better. She would be heartbroken. Life is pretty sweet honey. Promise me you’ll live it. You going to promise me that?
“I’ll keep trying.”
Kate Mulgrew: Okay, come shake my hand.
A woman with an infant arrives at the mike.
Kate Mulgrew: (To Tim) Oh, Hon (then starts to laugh at his reaction) What was your mother talking to you about this…look at this baby.
“I want you to meet my daughter. She was born on March 14th after three years of trying. And we named her Kathryn after Captain Janeway.”
Kate Mulgrew: Oh… can I see her? Honey take the… (she hands Tim the mike) Come on up… come on up.
Tim Hagan: Just don’t get any big ideas here!
Kate takes the baby and holds her.
Tim Hagan: If a politician did this they’d say what a bunch of phonies!
Kate Mulgrew: Yes…can you imagine that.
“I have one more question. My friends have a nickname for me. They call me ‘Powerful Force’ and I just wondered how your husband deals with you being such a powerful force?”
Kate Mulgrew: I think perhaps he should answer that question. Darling?
Tim Hagan gets down on his hands and knees and bows low…
Kate Mulgrew: I cannot believe this…You are unbelievably full of …!
“If he deals with it the way my husband deals with it… he just keeps his mouth shut.”
Kate Mulgrew: Well. I’m afraid it doesn’t work that way in our house! Thank you. Congratulations on your beautiful baby. Yes?
“I want to say thank you for coming today. It’s great to see you again. And I had a unique opportunity Wednesday night to go see the final episode of Voyager on a big T.V. screen.”
Kate Mulgrew: Did you?
“UPN station in my area sponsored it. And I want to say that you and the rest of the cast did an excellent job in that and my friends back home all say that it’s movie quality…”
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you… thank you. Poured my heart into that one.
Kate Mulgrew: You know, playing two characters is really tough to do. How many of you are familiar with motion control? You don’t know what that is. When you play against yourself… Admiral Janeway against Captain Janeway, we would do it three different ways. Once I would do it with a stand in. Once I would do it with the stand in off camera, and finally and most exactingly, alone. Nothing there. And I would have to take the measure of her height, gauge every movement that I made when I took the coffee cup… do you remember that scene where I took the coffee from her and smelled it? Ten hours. That moment, to shoot. It really was difficult. But didn’t Allan Kroeker do a splendid job directing? Didn’t he?
(Tim Hagan makes a move to leave) Well come up sweetheart. Please don’t buy this… who buys this act? Don’t. You know the truth. Mr. Dominant at home. I’m very quiet and very mousy at home.
“…. Did Miss Bujold ever call you to acknowledge your work or to acknowledge that she could never fill your captain’s boots!?”
Kate Mulgrew: No… I haven’t received that phone call! You know, I always thought she was remarkably, not only insightful, but gutsy. It was a good choice. She understood constitutionally there was no way she could pull it off. Right. She was raising a young son. Had that woman protracted her engagement. Had she stayed on, for three - even six months, it could have put the whole thing so seriously in the toilet. Are you aware of that? I admire her for that. She forewent a great deal, I’m sure, of money and security. And I admire her. She just didn’t … it wasn’t for her. No. I don’t think she was afraid of filling those boots. Genevieve Bujold is a spectacular actress.
“You are too.”
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you. Thank you. I am soooo glad she left! We say au revoir! Yes?
“… when you were told you would be Captain Janeway, did you sit down and look at old films of Next Generation, The Original, or Deep Space Nine?”
Kate Mulgrew: I didn’t look at anything. They sent me ten, twelve tapes. I didn’t look at them. First of all, I had two days to pull it together. And I thought what am I going to do? Look at Jean Luc Picard. I’d walk in here and the whole thing would be absurd. Right? And I think when you’re shot out of the cannon, the best thing is to just let ‘er rip. I came in. I had an original concept of Janeway, obviously it was sufficient for them and I’m glad I did. I’m glad I did.
“Were you conscious of the fact that a lot of guys would say… this is not the captain… did you have a conscious thought of that…”
Kate Mulgrew: That they would understand that I was a woman and not a man?
“Did you portray her in a different way?”
Kate Mulgrew: Well I think when they saw me, and they did recognize the gender difference … I mean well… we hope so… or we are in real trouble… why are you leaving?
Kate Mulgrew: Hi.
“Someone asked my question, but I wanted to come up and say hello anyway and let you know I’m from a family of fourteen kids …”
Kate Mulgrew: No!
“My mother’s from fourteen children also. I’m from Texas, you know, we do everything big down there.”
Kate Mulgrew: You’ve got thirteen or fourteen brothers and sisters and your mother has thirteen or fourteen brothers and sisters…
Kate Mulgrew: (To Tim) Look at this honey… I’m sorry, he’s taking a nap! How terrific. I can’t tell you how much I admire that. I know that it’s no longer popular or even tolerable in our society, and I don’t buy it.
“Your mother in law will probably tell you there was never a dull moment.”
Kate Mulgrew: I’m sure.
Kate Mulgrew: You seem to have survived very nicely.
Kate Mulgrew: You’re welcome.
“Anyway, I’d like to invite you down to Texas some time…for a Texas bar b q.”
Kate Mulgrew: Well… I’ve got a little problem going down near to Texas, I’m sure you can figure out why… Where do you live in Texas?
Kate Mulgrew: What’s your political inclination? If I may ask?
“You may. I usually vote for who I think is the better candidate, whether Republican or Democrat.”
Kate Mulgrew: I see…that’s really difficult…who did you vote for?
Kate Mulgrew: Ah…I’m sorry! Thank you… thank you. Large family – there’s hope for the others! I believe we have a seeing-eye dog here. Yes. What is your name?
“My name is Virginia.”
Kate Mulgrew: Hello Virginia. How are you?
“I’m fine. I want thank … if you can get the message back. On Next Generation they had a blind man on it and as far as I know that’s the only TV show that has somebody who’s handicapped in a regular series.”
Kate Mulgrew: Geordi.
“And I also want to thank you for the courage that you portray on the series and I look up to you very much.”
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you very, very much. She makes an excellent point, doesn’t she? More of that has to be done on television. Much much much more. Or we’re never going to dispel the myth of the handicapped, are we? Those days have to change. Oh boy…hon. Can you see this? Look at this little doll. Come up here, let everybody see you, sweetheart. You’re such a doll. Now here’s some hair for you! Come on! Jump up… jump… run! Oop! What’s your name?
Kate Mulgrew: Look at this face. Yes. Is that your dad? Does he have a question for me or do you have a question?
“What was it like fighting the Borg?”
Kate Mulgrew: It is great fun! You know what I did to the Borg Queen in the end, don’t you darling? What did Captain Janeway do to the Borg Queen in the end?
“You killed her.”
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you very much! Do you have question?
“Yeah. I just have two quick comments, one for you and one for your husband. I wanted to thank you – there’s not a lot of television on these days that a father and daughter can watch together, so I appreciate that.”
Kate Mulgrew: Well you have one beautiful daughter.
“Thank you. She owes that to her mother.”
Kate Mulgrew: Ahh… and a nice one too!
“And a comment for your husband, if I could. As someone who is married to a very strong willed woman, I admire your technique.”
Tim Hagan: How many people are from Cleveland here? How many listen to Lanagon and Malone in this group? And how many know, knew who the hell I was before I married Captain Janeway? You know, I was involved in public life for 25 years. I thought I’d made a contribution! And now I’m introduced as Captain Janeway’s husband. So… Thanks very much Kate!
Kate Mulgrew: Don’t mention it, Mr. Mulgrew! (much laughter from Kate, Tim and the audience) Hi, what’s your name?
Kate Mulgrew: Christine.
“I was wondering what one of the I’m sure many fun moments on Voyager that was.”
Kate Mulgrew: What one of the more fun moments. Fun moment… I had a lot of fun moments. Very very dangerous after midnight with those boys on the bridge. I mean very dangerous. Do you know what scatological means? All right. Well I will not define it for you. But I will put it to you thusly: Most men, between the ages of ten and eighty after midnight, turn into something that their mothers would rather they didn’t. And because I was the only woman in their presence, they really felt that they could overlook my being there. Are you understanding what I’m saying? There’s been a great deal of pants falling down, spit balls being hurled. Lovely, just lovely. Great fun. Thank you.
At this point Emily Barth interrupted to say that was it!
Kate Mulgrew: Why Emily?
“Because everybody wants your autograph.”
Kate Mulgrew: I promise nobody’s going to leave here without my autograph. Let me just take one more question. One more question… please. Yes.
“Kate. Great, great privilege. I would consider it one of the absolute high points of my life if you would order me to your ready room.”
(From the back of the stage where he's been standing Tim, with a mock "hey, that's my wife" look, starts to come forward. Kate indicates Tim) He wants to know – can he come too?
Kate Mulgrew: Thank you very much. I don’t have any more time for questions because I want to sign these autographs. This has been the best group, the best time, I have ever had. Thank you very, very much.
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