Star Trek fans will remember Kaitlin Hopkins for her two roles on Deep Space Nine, and on Star Trek: Voyager. She played Kilana the Vorta in The Ship, and Dala in Voyager‘s Live Fast and Prosper.
Hopkins auditioned for the Vorta role. “I had a wonderful agent at the time at the Gersh Agency who submitted me and was able to get me an appointment,” she said “Also, the casting director had seen my work in the theater in Los Angeles. I think that helped.”
The actress was impressed with the stories and the writing on Deep Space Nine. ” just loved that the writers were willing to take a risk and trust that basically two people just standing still for the large majority of the episode, negotiating, was going to be compelling enough to sustain the audience,” she said. “I have to say, and not because I was in it, but I thought the writing on DS9 was incredible, but most especially I thought the structure of the storytelling and writing on that episode was both unique and brilliant.”
For her role on Live Fast and Prosper, Hopkins also auditioned. “It was an audition,” she said. “And honestly, I’m not sure if having done DS9 was a factor in my being cast. I just remember I did a kickass Janeway impersonation from watching every episode. I was a big fan, as I said, and I think that more than likely was what booked it for me. This is probably not known, but there was an amazing scene in that episode where I also impersonated Seven of Nine. It was so fun playing her, and I loved that scene, but the episode was too long and ultimately, they cut it.”
What Hopkins remembers most about the Voyager work was the heat. They shot the episode in the desert where it was “close to 113 degrees that day.”
“The ship that we were standing on was metal,” said Hopkins. “I can’t even imagine what the temperature was with the sun beating down onto that metal and these waves of heat would waft up and smack us in the face. I remember every time they yelled cut, they would bring water, trying to keep us hydrated and had shammy cloths soaked in ice water to put on our necks and wrists during breaks. So, the poor actors who were the Jem’Hadar standing behind me, their head pieces covered their heads almost completely in rubber, and we were in the middle of a scene and all of a sudden I hear a big ‘clunk’ behind me, and the director yells “Cut!’ One of them had fainted from the heat.”
Hopkins is the Head of Musical Theater at Texas State University. She is still acting, although she is “more selective” about the roles she takes on these days and is more apt to be found in a play than on television or in a movie.