Caption: Robert Picardo at Star Trek Mission NY
Robert Picardo’s parents initially weren’t supportive of his desire to become an actor. Divine intervention—or the closest earthly thing to it—changed all that when, while attending Yale, Picardo’s vocal abilities landed him a part in Leonard Bernstein’s musical theater piece Mass. Bernstein saw Picardo perform and encouraged him to pursue his thespian ambitions, leading Picardo to suggest the maestro inform his parents of that fact! Bernstein did, gracefully easing the way for Picardo to change his major from pre-med to drama without any parental dissonance. After receiving his BA from Yale (where he had appeared in a university production of Aristophanes’ The Frogs with Sigourney Weaver, Christopher Durang and Meryl Streep), Picardo moved to New York City and enrolled at Circle at the Square Professional Theater Workshop; while there, he appeared with young actress Diane Keaton in The Primary English Class. Subsequent theatrical roles on both coasts found him paired with Danny Aiello (in Gemini), Jack Lemmon (Tribute) and Paul Dooley (Lend Me a Tenor). While working on the West Coast, Picardo decided to try out for film and television roles. Although he found work in both media, his performances on the small screen attracted the most attention, and he began racking up ongoing roles in multiple series, including Alice, The Wonder Years and China Beach. Following his seven-year run on Star Trek: Voyager, he went back to splitting his time between stage, big screen and small screen. Among recent highlights, he has guested on The 4400, Smallville, Chuck, Pushing Daisies, and Castle; appeared regularly as the character of Richard Woolsey in both Stargate SG1 and Stargate: Atlantis; and performed in several musicals, including a 2004 production of Mame at the Hollywood Bowl.