With a Leo Award under her belt and another nomination for her role as the Blue Fairy, Once Upon A Time’s Keegan Connor Tracy is certainly trailing something like fairydust over her career. But even though she’s floating high above the other characters in Fairy Tale Land, the Ontario-born Vancouverite says “I never even know if I’m at the top; I never seem to stop looking at what else I can do.”
With a broad career ranging from comedy to tragedy and writing to design, Keegan is perhaps best known for her role in the series Beggars and Choosers as Audrey Malone. But she’s also appeared in a range of Sci-Fi and Fantasy shows, including Stargate SG-1, The 4400, Battlestar Galactica and Supernatural. So her latest role, as the powerful Blue Fairy and the rather more retiring Mother Superior in ABC’s Once Upon A Time should have something of a natural step – or float – forwards….
Can you tell us more about the audition process and how you got the role of Blue?
“I think it was 3 auditions in total? I wore a full length green velvet vintage coat and brought a very small baby. So they tell me.”
You’ve worked on other fantasy/sci-fi shows before; how does “Once Upon A Time” compare?
“OUAT is quite incomparable. I’ve been a lot of things, but never a fairy. Though I did fly on Nightman…”
How much of Blue’s backstory was explained to you by the showrunners? Are there any details we’ve still yet to see?
“Uhm…zero? I think there have been bits and pieces of her story (Rheul Ghorm etc) that tell us about Blue, but I think that’s just the tip. I sure hope it is!”
What’s filming like? Do you do a lot of green screen work or do you play scenes with the other actors?
“A mix of both, but Blue is always green screen. Actually, I should have them change that. I demand a blue screen! Course then I might appear as A floating head… scratch that.”
Blue appears to be extremely powerful – is she a force for good or does her magic come with a price too?
“All magic comes with a price, dearie…
Whether Blue is bad or good remains to be seen, non?”
How do you see the relationship between the dwarves and the fairies? Blue clearly didn’t approve of Nova having a romance with Dreamy – do you think the dwarves work FOR the fairies or WITH them?
“I think people misunderstood Blue’s role in the Nova scandal. For her, all she knew was that dwarves can’t love, she didn’t know about the fairy dust accident. And I suppose she had high hopes for Nova as her protege, and that thing with Dreamy sure would complicate things. As for their relationship – I think we couldn’t have fairy dust without them working the mines. Technically Slave labor? Hmm, maybe Blue is an evil dictator, profiting from a huge diamond dust empire!”
In Storybrooke, all the fairies became nuns, which seemed like a bold choice in terms of how they might be represented in OUR world. Can you talk a little about how you interpreted Blue’s character in Storybrooke?
“Well, I suppose it was meant to represent benign power, benevolence, kindness, things fairies are known for. However, we’ve all seen what Mothers Superior are willing to do to keep power – who knows what Blue is waiting for? I think she’s remained awfully quiet considering she’s one of the few beings with magic in SB.”
Blue seems to have a “difficult” relationship with Rumpelstiltskin. Do you think that might play out in future episodes? Should we be scared for the Blue Fairy if Rumple decides to enact his revenge on her for sending Bae to a land without magic?
“I would have to go with yes’ on that one. There was talk that Rumple blamed Blue for losing Bae (though it sure looked like his own fault) and it’s likely Bae might feel the same way. I think there’s some family dynamics waiting to be hashed out.”
What would you like to see happen for the Blue Fairy? What’s your dream storyline for her?
“I’d love to see her have ‘her’ episode where we finally learn about her. I think there are lots of people who’d like to know more about the fairies in general, how they came to be, how they got so powerful, how she became Rheul Ghorm?”
You spent some time in Europe – do you think that broadened your experience and do you have any plans to return in the near future?
“Absolutely – I travelled and lived there for two years and it gives you a whole different perspective on life. I learned about being French, but I also learned about being Canadian. It was very formative. And yes, hopefully this spring for the MCMExpo.”
Can you tell us about your upcoming role on “Bates Motel”? Is it difficult filming two shows at once?
“Juggling the schedules with two kids and a voice career has been a challenge, yes! My role on Bates is vastly different from Once – I play that teacher in Norman’s life who gets him, who has a great influence on him – it opens lots of questions…and it’s been a great role to bite off.”
Look out for Keegan in Bates Motel, airing later this year on A&E, and also at the MCMExpo in the UK this spring. In the meantime, however, in order to uncover more secrets about the Blue Fairy and her background and to see more of Keegan’s award-nominating performance on the show, keep watching ABC’s Once Upon A Time, returning next Sunday, February 10th.