October 3-5, 2003
Please do not repost, reproduce or hot link to photos
Many thanks to Claudia from Krefeld, Germany for these memories of the recent Galileo Convention.
Please bear in mind that this is a report, done from memory, and not a transcript of the event.
John de Lancie and his son Keegan had almost finished their own panel on stage when sudden enthusiastic shouts sounded from the audience and an elegant woman entered from backstage.
Dressed in a long, dark-grey skirt, black boots, a black twin-set consisting of a t-shirt and cardigan and a long, black satin scarf, Kate Mulgrew hugged John, and whispered something into his ear. Suddenly, John pulled Kate into his arms and it looked like they kissed each other passionately. Kate even let herself fall backwards, only held by his arms around her.
The audience freaked out at that time and just a moment later Kate hugged Keegan warmly.
Thundering applause and standing ovations welcomed Kate.
Then Kate started her welcome speech in perfect German: “Hier ist Captain Kathryn Janeway vom Föderationsraumschiff Voyager.” There were several more sentences in German, which meant how happy she was to be in Germany and so on ….
Most people in the audience (including myself) were really astonished until they realized that it was not Kate who spoke, although her lips moved in sync.
From backstage - unseen by the audience – Kate’s German dubbing voice, Gertie Honeck, was the one who talked and Kate played this trick on us to show how she sounded in German.
While the audience applauded enthusiastically, Gertie came on stage and was welcomed warmly by Kate. They hugged and Kate introduced Gertie to us.
Then they talked about the difficulties in dubbing “Captain Janeway” and Kate was kidding Gertie by asking her to translate several words of technobabble into German which were misunderstood by Gertie. The audience helped her (because everyone noticed that Gertie was very nervous) and then Kate wanted a translation for “Commander Chakotay into my ready room. Now!” After that, she said that actually Chakotay never came, which prompted loud laughter from us and especially from all present J/Cers in the audience.
Gertie left the stage and Kate started her Q&A, beginning with a hint that she will answer all questions except any questions concerning the ‘never-starting love story’ between Janeway and Chakotay.
Then she made some statements why she was happy to be in Germany again, how nicely she had been cared for by a young con staff member called Pinky, and last but not least she thanked two groups of fans in the audience who had met with her just before the panel started.
Kate asked our Group of Five to get up and told the audience that we had given her a gift – the scarf she was wearing now - and how she was touched by what we had said to her, namely that meeting some very good friends would not have happened without her.
Kate told us that this was why she loves what she does and the audience applauded her and (how embarrassing) us.
Later during the Q&A session Kate stopped with a naughty look on her face and told us that we were allowed to ask questions about Chakotay even though we knew that she didn’t like to talk about Chakotay or her hair.
Then she asked - exasperated “Why the obsession with Commander Chakotay!?”
Shout from the audience “Because he’s cute!”
Kate nodded. “Yeah, he is cute.”
After the crowd had stopped cheering and applauding, she introduced her husband Tim to us and told us that he had just lost his best friend on Thursday, but still wanted to accompany her to Germany to attend this convention.
The audience applauded Tim while he kissed her tenderly.
Kate mentioned that when Tea at Five finished in July, it was the first time in their 5 years of marriage that they had had more than two weeks to spend time together and that she really enjoyed all these housewife’s duties, like cooking, cleaning, milking the cows, slaughtering the pigs ….
She talked about their vacation in Cornwall two years ago, where Tim had probably never even put one toe into the sea. They usually spend their spare time with quiet walks, long dinners and a lot of reading for both of them.
It was all very personal and it was obvious how well they harmonize.
Kate called Tim ‘honey, darling, sweetheart’ all the time and I think everyone could feel their togetherness very clearly.
Then she returned to her play Tea at Five and mentioned that it will also be in London and Germany, probably next year.
Very happy cheers from the audience!
Tim asked her if she would do it in German then and Kate told him that she would love to do so, because in her opinion all people who visit other countries should know the native language. But then she admitted that it would not be possible to perform “two kinds of Hepburn in another language than English”, giving us a short sequence of the older Hepburn’s voice to show how difficult this would be.
Tim was teasing Kate and when he was asked if he liked to be called “Mr. Mulgrew” it actually was not clear what he thought about it, as they were playfully quarrelling about this. Kate, at least, made the statement that she would not like it!
Meanwhile, Kate started matchmaking to find a girlfriend for Pinky, the young, single con-staff-member.
Each girl that asked Kate a question was examined in regards to her age and called to come on stage to meet Pinky. The poor guy was really embarrassed, but in the end he hugged each of the girls and disappeared backstage until he was called another time by Kate who had found another girl in his age. That was very funny for the audience and, honestly, for Pinky, too.
I don’t know if he finally found a girlfriend or not – perhaps Kate will know …
Tim was still on stage and Kate began to talk about their love story, but she was rudely (!) interrupted by her husband, who asked the audience if they wanted to hear the true story.
Guess what we all answered?
Of course we wanted to hear it and Tim started at the time when they were reunited in 1998 when Kate’s mom called on him to contact Kate again.
You remember, Voyager was in season 4 when this happened and Kate told Tim on the phone to come to L.A. on this Friday to that hotel to meet her, because there was no time left during the shooting of the current episode of Voyager.
Tim complained that this second meeting was a very expensive trip from Cleveland to L.A. and Kate was terrified that he would tell this to all of us.
Now Kate told her version of their common story, but not the one which we all know – instead she talked about the day when Tim had to accompany her to the set for the first time.
He had to do this, because he actually did not believe that being an actress in Voyager was really such a hard job!
Kate roused him at 03:30 on a Monday morning and they got back home very late at night.
Being home again, Kate asked Tim if he wanted to add something to his opinion about her job, but then she remembered that Tim had already succumbed into a coma at that time!
You can imagine how much the audience was laughing about this new story of Mr Hagan’s and Ms. Mulgrew’s private life.
Then Tim went to the microphone and delivered a speech on politics, after ordering Kate to take a break, sit down on a chair and relax.
Well, now we heard a very well-said statement against George W. Bush, the Iraq war and Tim’s concern to make German people understand that not all Americans are supporters of their current president. His opinion was that the USA urgently needs a new president.
BTW, Mr. Schwarzenegger was also mentioned…
Meanwhile, Kate sat on her chair, nodding and being very proud and supportive of Tim and of what he said.
When he had finished she looked very happy as the audience gave her husband a really huge ovation and then they both shared a kiss and Tim left the stage.
Kate mentioned how proud she is that she managed all difficulties in those 7 years of her life - getting her sons into the college “no idea how I survived that”. She said that as an Irish Catholic she always knew how to work hard and stay standing upright.
Kate made a statement that she would never have made it if she would not have had the support of all her fans and that she is very grateful for it.
Then Kate talked about her first day on the Voyager set, when 50 officials from Paramount watched her - ‘let’s see if this fraulein will get it.’
Finally, she talked about the good friends she had made during this time, like Robert Picardo, Robbie McNeill, Ethan Phillips and Roxann Dawson.
Questions & Answers:
Will Tea at Five be coming to Europe?
How do you feel after 7 years living in the same place and now travelling around the country from theatre to theatre?
Actors and actresses never live in the same place, although it gets harder the older you get.
How did you like your Borg costume and make up?
I hate all make up. I don’t even like people touching my hair, which was bad because I had 9 different hairdos alone in Season 1. But the Borg costume was worth it because I could be bold like most of all Star Trek Captains.
BTW, I usually wear it on Saturdays for my husband.
Tim from the background: Yeah, but I actually wanted to see her in Seven of Nine’s outfit!
Keep on dreaming, darling!
What does your husband think, when he learns that there are lesbian women present who are in love with you?
Tim supports gays and lesbians in the USA, that’s nothing to be ashamed of.
Are you lesbian?
Tim: Support is important! Nobody should be treated differently just because some mad person will not get it that some people are different.
Is it more difficult to play Katharine Hepburn after her death?
No. I did not know her personally, I was not a friend of hers.
If you were 19 years old again, would you think that you’d be so successful in Hollywood once more?
Yeah, it’s like that when you are 19.
What do you think about Enterprise?
I’m sorry, I’ve never watched it. But each Captain thinks that HIS ship and crew are the best one.
And the best ones even have got hair… I envy Patrick Stewart… as I told you I don’t like my hair touched – no one could touch his hair….
What´s your favorite episode?
That’s the same thing as asking parents for their favorite child. I like all two-parters, all Doctor episodes and all episodes dealing with social problems.
Could our future be similar to Star Trek?
Yeah, mankind can only get better.
Were there any practical jokes played on you on the set?
Friday night ... after midnight … men turn into 12-year-old children. And after 65 hours of working, they turn into ‘naked’ 12-year-old children. Spitballs … dirty jokes. .. dirty socks… that was what the bridge of Voyager looked like.
Did you know what Tim Russ was wearing when he was behind his tactical station? Only his underwear and slippers – can you believe that??
After this last question Kate had to leave the stage, because her talking time had already been 30 minutes longer than scheduled.
When René from the Galileo Organisation Staff came on stage to tell her so, the audience was really angry with him. Poor guy!
The audience did not want to let her go and Kate had to return to the stage three times.
Standing ovations for 10 minutes and cheering people all over the place.
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