Star Trek Picard Actress Michelle Hurd wears a white shirt with a cloak and a leather vest.

Jasmin blazer and Daytona trousers by Manuri Clothing. Dress shirt, corset, and belt by Uncuffed Leather. Earrings by M.M.LaFleur. Rings by Natalie Mills Jewelry. Shoes by Stuart Weitzman

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

Picard's Michelle Hurd may be a relative newcomer to the legendary Star Trek universe, but her talent, ferocity, and compassion have already won her a legion of fans.

By Mara Reinstein

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

Yup, Michelle Hurd watched Star Trek as a kid. A lot of Star Trek. But her fandom took on special meaning as she caught a classic episode in 2019—just a few months after landing the role of Starfleet Lieutenant Commander Raffaela “Raffi” Musiker on the new spinoff series Picard.

“It actually brought me to tears,” she says. “I couldn’t believe that I was on this show with this family and this legacy. It made me want to live up to the responsibility and do it justice.”

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Mission Accomplished

Star Trek Picard Actress Michelle Hurd wears a white shirt with a leather vest.

Jasmin blazer and Daytona trousers by Manuri Clothing. Dress shirt, corset, and belt by Uncuffed Leather. Earrings by M.M.LaFleur. Rings by Natalie Mills Jewelry. Shoes by Stuart Weitzman

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

Mission accomplished. After just 10 episodes of Picard, Raffi has made her mark on the iconic franchise as a strong-willed character unafraid to go toe-to-toe with Sir Patrick Stewart’s titular captain. (In Season 1, Raffi battled a substance addiction, shared a kiss with Jeri Ryan’s Seven of Nine, and helped save the galaxy.)

Now, after a pandemic-induced delay, she’s boldly going where no man . . . OK, fine, she’s returning for another round. But still. “I’m really excited about it because it’s so action-packed with a lot of surprises,” Hurd adds, speaking broadly as not to give away spoilers. (She won’t even confirm that it’s partially set in the 21st century!)

Career Highlight

Star Trek Picard Actress Michelle Hurd leaps gracefully raising in the air wearing a sleeveless black gown

Gown by Winnie Couture. Bracelets by Sterling Forever and Elise Paige Jewelry. Rings by Natalie Mills Jewelry.

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

Per the native New Yorker, her Picard tenure is the highlight in a diverse TV career that’s spanned more than three decades. She’s certainly the only actress who can lay claim to appearing on Law & Order: SVU, ER, The Good Wife, Ash vs. Evil Dead, and both The O.C. and Gossip Girl. (Ironically, she met her husband of 15 years, fellow veteran TV actor and Fear the Walking Dead star Garrett Dillahunt, while starring in a play with him.) During a break from filming Season 3 of Picard, Hurd, 55, discussed her past and Raffi’s future.

Returning To Raffi

Star Trek Actress Michelle Hurd in shiny and bow bedecked grey cocktail dress.

Cocktail dress by Falguni Shane Peacock

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

When we last saw Raffi, she was in a pretty good emotional place. Where is she now?

MH: She still is in that good place at the start, especially in comparison to the beginning of Season 2. But she’s a walking heart, right? And with that heart comes deep feelings. So she has to deal with a world of challenges and ends up walking through all the difficulties that caused her to spiral into dark places. She becomes determined to fix things —I’m not sure if she can, but she is going to try.

Whoopi Goldberg reprises her role as Guinan. Did you work with her directly?

MH: I’m in a scene with her, and I got to hang out with her. She is the coolest person, and seeing her and Patrick converse was an insane moment in time.

First Day On Set

Star Trek Actress Michelle hurd in a black gown that is gem encrusted along the collar.

Gown by Winnie Couture. Earrings by Catherine Weitzman.

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

You waited an extra six months to start production on the season. What was it like that first day back?

MH: Oh my god. I refer to my crew as my motley crew. We’re this family that loves each other and laughs with each other. It was so great to see them, though we all sort of stayed in this connective state with Zooming and texting. But we also had to take care of each other with the protocols. My lead actor is a mature man, and I was going to do everything in my bones to make sure he was safe.

Impromptu Shakespeare

Star Trek Actress Michelle hurd insheer print dress.

Dress by Falguni Shane Peacock. Earrings by Zarianas. Bracelets by Sterling Forever and Elise Paige Jewelry. Rings by Natalie Mills Jewelry. Shoes by Femme LA

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

Sir Patrick read a Shakespeare sonnet on social media every day during the height of the pandemic. Does he ever do that on set?

MH: Actually, there was a moment when we were promoting the show at this gorgeous old-fashioned theater in Lucca, Italy. We’re onstage and had just finished the questions, and Patrick took the mic and said, “I’m having a very difficult time fighting the urge to stand up and do Shakespeare, and I’m not going to fight it anymore.” He put the mic down and did this beautiful monologue! I feel spoiled because not only do I get to act with him, but he’s my friend, too. He knows how much I love him.

Trekkies Know

Star Trek Actress Michelle hurd in an auquamarine ruffled dress.

Gown by Alina Anwar Couture. Earrings by Natalie Mills Jewelry

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

How are the Trekkie fans treating you? It’s a whole other level of adoration.

MH: I’ve been humbled at how welcoming and how warm they’ve been. And I’ve discovered that they really know their s--t. They know it better than we do. I’m always impressed with their deep questions about the foundation of Star Trek. They know the importance of inclusivity and that everyone has a voice and we should give each other time and make eye contact and hold space.

Mutual Support

Star Trek Actress Michelle hurd in an auquamarine ruffled dress.

Gown by Alina Anwar Couture. Earrings by Natalie Mills Jewelry

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe.

So you and your husband have over 100 TV credits between the two of you. What’s the best part about being married to a fellow actor?

MH: We understand what our worlds are like, and then we’re also able to work with each other. I love talking to Garrett about the arts. And I love running lines with him and helping him with auditions. And he inspires me to just make bold choices and go for it. We have no competition between us—just support, encouragement, and love.

Acting With Authority

Star Trek Actress Michelle hurd in a gauzey black dress and leather boots.

Dress by Winnie Couture. Bracelets by Sterling Forever and Elise Paige Jewelry. Rings by Natalie Mills Jewelry. Boots by Magnanni

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe.

You’ve played a lot of authority figures in your career. Is that intentional?

MH: My first job out of college was playing a district attorney on Another World. Mind you, I was 22. I remember my very first day of shooting: I was so nervous that my knees were shaking. But I stood in front of the courtroom and I said to myself, “Get up and claim that space.” I loved that feeling so much that I told my agents that I wasn’t interested in being the girlfriend or the wife or the lover or the ingenue. I wanted to be the boss.

A Platform And A Voice

Star Trek Actress Michelle hurd in bright pink gown.

Overcoat by Stello. Earrings by Natalie Mills Jewelry. Shoes by Flor de Maria.

Photography by Max Hemphill and Styled by Toye Adepipe

Was that personally important to you too?

MH: I grew up a little biracial kid in New York and didn’t see a lot of people like myself on television. So I wanted young ladies who look like me to see themselves as leaders who walk into a room and control it and have something to say and contribute. But I love playing Raffi because you also get to see imperfections. We don’t always get it right. We stumble and fall and make mistakes—but we’re still valuable human beings and deserve a voice and platform.

HAIR & MAKEUP STYLIST: Sara Denman

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Stream Star Trek: Picard on Paramount+.


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