Last weekend, fans who attended the Creation Entertainment Official Star Trek Convention were entertained by many actors from various Star Trek series, including Nichelle Nichols, Leonard Nimoy, Grace Lee Whitney, the Duras Sisters, Connor Trinneer, Dominic Keating, Nana Visitor, Rene Auberjonois and other guest stars.
On the first day of the convention, held in San Francisco, Richard Arnold, former assistant to Gene Roddenberry, started things off with a 45th anniversary slideshow and reminisced about 1970s fandom and the birth of the Star Trek conventions.
Grace Lee Whitney told the audience about her favorite Star Trek episode, The Enemy Within, which featured two Kirks, a good and a bad one. She was bruised during the scene when the bad Kirk grabs her and drags her across the floor of his cabin, she told the audience. Whitney also shared details about the “Janice Rand look” which included makeup, the way she was lit and of course, that famous basket-weave hair-do.
On the second day of the convention, Nichelle Nichols answered questions and sang for the fans, including a song about Charlie X from the episode of the same name. After her appearance, the Duras Sisters (Gwynyth Walsh and Barbara March) appeared in costume. “It all comes right back,” said March, who explained that the Klingon teeth they were obliged to wear were “like torture, so you can get in character and be pissed off already before you get on camera.”
The highlight of the second day was the appearance of Leonard Nimoy, who shared stories about his career in acting and photography. He spoke about his (at the time) controversial memoir, I Am Not Spock. “I called the chapter, I Am Not Spock,” he said. When his publisher asked him for the title of his book itself, he said, “Let’s go with I Am Not Spock. People will find that interesting.” But Nimoy soon found out that the fans ” found it interesting, all right, in the wrong way.”
The final day of the convention featured actors from Star Trek: Enterprise and Deep Space Nine. Connor Trinneer and Dominic Keating entertained the audience and updated them on the actors’ current projects. When asked if the cast members stay in touch, Keating gave a reply which will surely please Scott Bakula fans, “Connor and I are very close,” he said. “And every Christmas we go to Scott Bakula’s Christmas party. I’m still on the list for that.” Keating also said that fans will be seeing a lot of Scott Bakula at conventions this year, because he’s signed on for several. “He recently remodeled his house,” said Keating.
The final appearance was that of Rene Auberjonois and Nana Visitor, on stage together. The pair talked about their careers and current projects, and of course, about their projects. Auberjonois told the audience why he developed a gruff voice for Odo. “When I went in to audition for the role … The casting director said nobody had been grouchy enough.” So Auberjonois chose to go into the audition already in character as Odo, gruff voice and all.
Visitor shared her memory of the Take Me Out to the Holosuite episode; where it turned out that she had no baseball skills whatsoever but had to acquire them quickly. “I was never so nervous because we had to stay there until I hit the ball,” she said. But when the cameras started rolling, she (and those working with her) were in luck. “I cracked the ball right away,” she said. “The crew was so thrilled they carried me on their shoulders.”
Auberjonois and Visitor also gave a unique dramatic presentation called “Cross Our Hearts: Poems and Prose,” which they plan to do at other conventions this year.