‘General Hospital’: What Nationality Is Liesl Obrecht Actor Kathleen Gati?

Dr. Liesl Obrecht is a well-known recurring character on General Hospital. She is known for being an antagonist who happens to have a strong German accent.

Obrecht has made an impression on a lot of viewers, and some fans might be curious to know about the character’s actor, Kathleen Gati. For example, what nationality is Gati and where is she from? 

Kathleen Gati
Kathleen Gati | Fred Hayes/WireImage for Sundance Film Festival

Who is Liesl Obrecht on ‘General Hospital’?

Obrecht first appeared on General Hospital in 2012. At the time, she was a doctor at the Swiss clinic where Robin Scorpio (Kimberly McCullough) was being kept against her will.

She later showed up at Port Charles and proceeded to make enemies with several citizens. Obrecht has a track record of doing shady things, including poisoning enemies, kidnapping kids, and taking people hostage.

However, Obrecht is also a complicated character. Despite her evil side, she has been known to be a loving person towards her family members—most notably, her daughter Britt Westbourne (Kelly Thiebaud).

What nationality is Kathleen Gati?

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Her character is Swiss German, but Gati has Hungarian ancestry. She was born and raised in Canada, and her parents came from Hungary.

Gati has acted in a number of Hungarian films in the 1990s. She once commented on her experience in an interview with Soap Opera Spy, saying, “Hungarian cinema has such a rich legacy and sadly, due to the political and economic changes since communism officially ended, the country is simply unable to produce the same quantity and quality as before. My six years in Hungary were some of my professionally richest and most profound moments of my career.”

Some fans might also be curious about what Gati sounds like in real life. She does not actually speak with Obrecht’s distinctive accent.

Kathleen Gati used to be a ballet dancer

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Gati is known for being an actor now, but used to train seriously as a ballet dancer when she was a child.

“Growing up, my sister and I were sent to the theatre, and we saw a lot of plays, and saw a lot of ballets, and heard a lot of music,” Gati said in an interview with Michelle Sandlin. “The ballet was actually what touched me.”

She explained, “Basically for the next 16 years that’s all I wanted to eat, sleep and drink. I just wanted to dance and express myself, because I never felt I could properly express myself with words, but through the music and through dance, I felt that I could express all my emotions.”

Unfortunately, Gati sustained an injury that eventually made her stop dancing. Gati struggled to cope with it for a while.

“I thought my life was over. But it was a grateful injury,” she said. “At the time you’re in the middle of a crisis, but it isn’t until later that you look back and go, ‘Oh that’s why that happened.’ You look back and everything has a reason why it happens, but in the middle of it you don’t know, and I was devastated.”

The injury led her to pursue acting. She moved to New York and performed in theater plays, which eventually got her gigs on television shows.