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October 8, 2015

Kate Voegele Talks the 'One Tree Hill' and 'Life Unexpected' Crossover, Facebook Stalking Exes and More

by Jean Bentley, posted Oct 12th 2010 4:50PM
Kate Voegele on 'Life Unexpected'It's hard to tell what Kate Voegele's day job actually is. As a top-selling musician, she's released two albums and toured around the world. As an actress, she's played musician Mia Catalano on 'One Tree Hill' for four seasons. To make things more confusing, the songs Mia sings on the show are actually Kate's.

When Voegele called TV Squad last week from her family's home in Ohio, she said fans are very good about separating Kate from Mia. "That's what I wanted from the start -- for this to be a great way of exposing my music to everybody but also for people to see [my acting and singing] as separate. It can be so hard to be taken seriously as both. I think 'One Tree Hill' has done a great job of helping me figure out how to show people that I'm able to do both things."

Tonight, fans of another series will see Kate show off both her talents when The CW broadcasts a crossover episode that brings Mia and her fellow 'One Tree Hill' character Haley to a fictional music festival on 'Life Unexpected.' Read on for Kate's thoughts on Facebook stalking exes, playing Mia in a new setting and getting back into the studio to record her third album.

What can you tell us about the crossover episode?
At this point in 'One Tree Hill,' Mia is at a breaking point. She's upset that her ex-boyfriend is dating this new girl who is a nemesis to Mia -- they kind of hate each other and are being really catty. She has a voodoo doll, she's stabbing the voodoo doll, she's freaking out, she's spying on them. And Haley, who is one of her best friends and a big sister figure to Mia, says 'That's it, dude, you've got to get out of town. We're going to play a show somewhere.'

Usually fans would see that scene but they wouldn't actually get to see the show. Whereas in this case, when 'One Tree Hill' is over they can watch 'Life Unexpected' and voila, there's the show. It's a really cool, seamless crossover. I think it's really well done. It was super natural -- not supernatural, in that kind of sense [laughs].

Was it weird to play Mia in a new setting?

For sure -- in a good way. For me as an actor, I'm really learning more and more -- now that it's my fourth season on the show -- just how to be the character. I remember Dakota Fanning said something like ' As an actress, I'm basically playing the same game I used to play in my backyard when I was a kid, just now there's cameras there.' That's kind of how it felt. Being in Vancouver on this new set I was able to fall into Mia's character even more. I felt like 'Okay, I'm not being Kate here. I'm playing a Kate song, but I'm being Mia.' She feels more and more real with every episode I do.

What's it like to play your own songs as a fictional character?
It's an interesting blend. I wondered when I got the role -- would it be better if I was playing Kate Voegele? But I think fans are able to separate Kate Voegele as a musician and Mia as this character who is a part of Tree Hill. The music is the same, but it's the bridge between the two. Rather than confusing people, it's just connected two things I've been doing my career that have both been great. Luckily the writers have made Mia this cute, likable character. They've been good to me. They could've made her some slutty, really crazy, skanky chick who's slept with everyone's boyfriends--

Like Alex.

Yeah! But instead they helped me out and made her this fun, relatable character.

Kate Voegele on 'Life Unexpected'Do you have any fun stories from the 'Life Unexpected' set?
One of the days it rained pretty heavily -- we had shot a bunch of outdoor stuff for the concert the day before, which was beautiful, and then it downpoured the next day. But mostly it went smoothly. The cast was so cool. Brittany, who plays Lux, had me call her mom because she said her mom is so obsessed with my music. She was like 'You have to call my mom!' She was so cute. So I talked to Brittany's mom.

Had you seen 'Life Unexpected'?
I'd seen a little bit of it and I'd heard really good things -- a lot of my friends really like it. The night I got in, the cast was having this party and they were screening the first two episodes of the new season, which hadn't aired yet. They invited me over and it was awesome to be able to sit down and see the reactions of all the people who were watching themselves. It's a great show. Really good characters.

Can you tell us anything about the 'One Tree Hill' Halloween episode?

I wish I could! I'll get in so much trouble if I do. I had to even get permission to say that there was a Halloween episode. But it's going to be great! You'll see a change in Mia. She comes back from Portland feeling refreshed. She's not stabbing any voodoo dolls in the Halloween episode. So that's good -- even though it's Halloween and it would be appropriate, she doesn't go dark for Halloween.

Have you ever made a voodoo doll of anyone?
I haven't! You know, I'm not big into the voodoo stuff. [Laughs] I've always been a little bit more straightforward with the way I deal with stuff. I'm not a big drama person. I'm from Ohio so I'm really easygoing. I also live on a bus with a bunch of guys, so I tend to just solve issues like they do where you confront it straight on.

But it was really funny to play Mia [so crazed]. I've been in that desperate situation before where you just want to know what's going on. I'm surprised we don't have a scene with Mia Facebook stalking Alex, because she's in that stage -- the obsessive, 'Oh my god, I'm just going to waste all my time stalking this person because I'm so threatened by them' stage. Everyone's been in that situation at some point.

Will you sing a new song on the episode?

It's a song the fans haven't heard on 'One Tree Hill' yet, so I think it'll be really fun for everybody to hear. It's just a fun, upbeat, sassy song. It fits perfectly with where Mia is at this point, sort of a 'don't mess with me' kind of tune. Hopefully people will like it.

What was it like recording your cover of the 'One Tree Hill' theme song?
It's a great song already, so it's a tall order to take that and make it something [different]. I think that giving it this sort of piano, moody, melancholy, eerie vibe brought out the desperation of the song. It's great to be back recording because I'm about to put out a third record in the spring. I'll probably be playing some new stuff on 'One Tree Hill' later this season, so getting back into the studio and doing that cover was a fun jumpstart to this recording process that I'm in the middle of right now.

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