The oldest and first dedicated online New York Theatre Guide Stay up to date with our newsletter
David Mark Rylance Waters was born on January 18, 1960, in Ashford, Kent, in England. In 1962, he moved with his parents to Connecticut and on to Wisconsin in 1969. He attended the University School of Milwaukee, where his father also taught English. He returned to the UK in 1978 and trained for the next two years at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and the Chrysalis Theatre School in London.
Rylance’s first professional job came at the Glasgow Citizens’ Theatre in Shaun Lawton’s Desperado Corner in 1980. He subsequently worked for the Royal Shakespeare Company and soon became a regular on both the London and New York stages as an acclaimed Shakespearean actor. His early work includes RSC productions of The Tempest, Hamlet, and Romeo and Juliet, as well as A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Royal Opera House, Macbeth at the Greenwich Theatre, and Much Ado About Nothing at the Queen’s Theatre (which earned him his first Olivier Award in 1994). He also appeared off-Broadway in the Theatre for a New Audience productions of Henry V, As You Like It, and Two Gentlemen of Verona.
In 1995, he famously became the first Artistic Director of the Shakespeare’s Globe theatre in London and continued in the position until 2005, acting and directing in every season at the popular theatrical landmark. After his tenure, he returned to the West End in Boeing Boeing at the Comedy Theatre in 2007, picking up another Olivier Award nomination and resulting in his Broadway debut. Boeing Boeing opened at Broadway’s Longacre Theatre in May 2008 and Rylance went on to win his first Tony Award that same year.
His next big, theatrical success came in the form of Jez Butterworth’s Jerusalem, which played London’s Royal Court Theatre in 2009, the Apollo Theatre in 2010 and Broadway’s Music Box Theatre in 2011. For his performance as Johnny ‘Rooster’ Byron, he picked up a second Olivier Award (in 2010) and a second Tony Award (in 2011). Between the London and New York runs of Jerusalem, he also managed to squeeze in both a West End and a Broadway engagement of David Hirson’s La Bête. He would return to Shakespeare’s Globe in 2012 and take on the role of Olivia in Twelfth Night and the title role of Richard III in two all-male productions, which played in repertory. These productions would transfer to the West End’s Apollo Theatre and then onto Broadway’s Belasco Theatre in 2013, winning his third Tony Award for his performance as Olivia and earning a Tony nomination for his portrayal of Richard III.
He starred as Philip V of Spain in Farinelli and the King at Shakespeare’s Globe’s Sam Wanamaker Playhouse in 2015, which transferred to the West End’s Duke of York’s Theatre later that same year. He then starred in Nice Fish (which he co-wrote with Louis Jenkins) at the St. Anne’s Warehouse in Brooklyn, before it transferred to London’s Harold Pinter Theatre in 2016. He would then reprise his acclaimed performance in Farinelli and the King on Broadway, playing a limited engagement at the Belasco Theatre from December 5, 2017 through to March 25, 2018. Over the course of his astounding stage career, Mr. Rylance has earned a total nine Olivier Award nominations (winning two) and four Tony Award nominations (winning three).
Mark Rylance has also enjoyed a prolific career on both the silver and small screen. He won an Oscar and a BAFTA for “Bridge of Spies” in 2016, whilst other major film credits include “Dunkirk,” “The BFG,” “Anonymous,” and “The Other Boleyn Girl”. His TV highlights include BAFTA wins for “The Government Inspector” in 2006 and “Wolf Hall” in 2016 (with the latter also earning him Golden Globe and Emmy Award nominations).
Dec 5, 2017 - Mar 26, 2018