Michael Cumpsty

Michael Cumpsty (born 28 February 1960) is a British actor. He has been acting since childhood. He has worked extensively performing Shakespeare, as well as both musicals and dramas on Broadway. He also performs in films and on television.

Michael Cumpsty
Born (1960-02-28) 28 February 1960 (age 60)
Partner(s)John Dias

Life and careerEdit

Cumpsty was born in Wakefield, West Riding of Yorkshire,[1] and moved to South Africa with his family when he was 9.[2] Cumpsty attended Haileybury College in Hertfordshire and received a Bachelor of Arts in English from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1982.[3][4]

On the Broadway stage he appeared in dramas, including La Bête (1991),[5] Timon of Athens (1993),[6] The Heiress (1995),[7] Copenhagen (2000),[8] and The Constant Wife (2005).[9] He appeared on Broadway in the play End of the Rainbow in 2012 and received a Tony Award nomination for Featured Actor for his performance.[6][1] He appeared in the Los Angeles production of the play, which ran in March and April 2013 at the Ahmanson Theatre.[10] He appeared in the Roundabout Theatre production of Machinal as the "husband" from December 2013 to 2 March 2014.[11]

In Broadway stage musicals, he played John Dickinson in the revival of 1776 (1997),[12] and Julian Marsh in the revival of 42nd Street (2001).[13][6] He played the role of Jules in the revival of Sunday in the Park With George in 2008.[14]

In Off-Broadway work, he both played the title role and co-directed a Classic Stage Company production of Richard III in 2007.[15] Other Shakespeare roles include Timon in Timon of Athens in 1996, Parolles in All's Well That Ends Well in 1993, Laertes in Hamlet in 1990, Time/Lord in The Winter's Tale in 1989, and Escalus in Romeo and Juliet in 1988, all at the Public Theater.[16] He played the title role in the Classic Stage Company production of Hamlet in 2005, winning the Obie Award, performance.[16]

Cumpsty's television credits include the daytime soap operas One Life to Live and All My Children, recurring roles on the primetime dramas L.A. Law in 1991 as a "killer litigator."[17] and Star Trek Voyager, and guest appearances on Matlock (7 May 1995)[18] and Law & Order.

Cumpsty's feature films include State of Grace (1990),[19] Fatal Instinct (1993),[20] Starting Out in the Evening (2007),[21] The Ice Storm (1997),[22] Eat Pray Love (2010)[23] and The Visitor (2007).[24]

Cumpsty appeared at the Two River Theater in Much Ado About Nothing in October 2011,[25] in Present Laughter in 2013, and directed the Wendy Wasserstein play Third in 2014.[26][27] He appeared in Absurd Person Singular as "Ronald" in January and on 1 February 2015.[2] He said of the Two River Theater: "It’s similar to off-Broadway, but at a much nicer theater. And it’s different from Broadway because it’s not commercial so there’s less pressure. It’s exhilarating, too. The run is short (three or four weeks) then it’s gone. It’s kind of special..."[2] He further said that he likes "language oriented work" and mentioned as examples Copenhagen and the plays of Tom Stoppard.[2]

Personal lifeEdit

His boyfriend, John Dias, is the artistic director of the Two River Theater Company in Red Bank, New Jersey, and they moved to New Jersey in 2010.[25]


  1. ^ a b Blank, Matthew. "PLAYBILL.COM'S CUE & A: End of the Rainbow Tony Nominee Michael Cumpsty" Playbill.com, 2012
  2. ^ a b c d Van Benthusen, Gretchen. "Actor Michael Cumpsty Shows 'Slap-Sticky’ Side At Two River Theater" theatercues.com, 30 January 2015
  3. ^ http://alumni.unc.edu/article.aspx?sid=9547
  4. ^ Rickwald, Bethany."The Colleges and Universities Attended by Tony Award Nominees" Theatermania.com, 31 May 2012
  5. ^ Rich, Frank."Review/Theater; High Art Battles Low in Rhymed Couplets" THe New York Times, 11 February 1991
  6. ^ a b c "Michael Cumpsty Broadway" playbillvault.com, accessed 19 August 2015
  7. ^ Canby, Vincent."Theater Review: 'The Heiress'" The New York Times, 10 March 1995
  8. ^ Brantley, Ben."THEATER REVIEW; A Fiery Power In the Behavior Of Particles And Humans" The New York Times, 12 April 2000
  9. ^ Isherwood, Charles."Theater Review:'The Constant Wife'" The New York Times, 17 June 2005
  10. ^ Hetrick, Adam. "Michael Cumpsty, Erik Heger and Miles Anderson to Join Tracie Bennett for L.A. Run of End of the Rainbow" Playbill, 2013
  11. ^ Gioia, Michael. "Broadway Revival of Machinal, Inspired by Murder Trial of Ruth Snyder, Opens Jan. 16", Playbill, 16 January 2014
  12. ^ Brantley, Ben."Singing the Course Of Human Events" The New York Times, 15 August 1997
  13. ^ Kenrick, John."'42nd Street', Ford Center, NYC - April 2001" musicals101.com, accessed 1 April 2011
  14. ^ Brantley, Ben."Theater Review:'Sunday in the Park With George'" The New York Times, 28 February 2008
  15. ^ Dziemianowicz, Joe."Taking a new stab at 'Richard III'" New York Daily News, 9 November 2007
  16. ^ a b "Michael Cumpsty Listing, Internet Off-Broadway Database" Archived 12 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine Internet Off-Broadway Database, accessed 31 March 2011
  17. ^ Carter, Bill. "For 'L.A. Law,' a New Skipper and a New Course", The New York Times, 30 July 1991
  18. ^ " Matlock Episode. The Scam" tv.com, accessed 19 August 2015
  19. ^ State of Grace rottentomatoes.com, accessed 1 April 2011
  20. ^ "Cast, Fatal Instinct" allmovie.com, accessed 1 April 2011
  21. ^ "Starting Out in the Evening Cast", The New York Times, accessed 19 August 2015
  22. ^ "Cast, The Ice Storm" allmovie.com, accessed 1 April 2011
  23. ^ "Cast, Eat Pray Love" rottentomatoes.com, accessed 1 April 2011
  24. ^ 'The Visitor' Internet Movie Database, accessed 1 April 2011
  25. ^ a b Filichia, Peter. "Much Ado About Nothing preview: Michael Cumpsty to play Benedick" Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine, nj.com, 9 September 2011
  26. ^ Chesak, Tom. The Third Man tworivertheater.org, accessed 19 August 2015
  27. ^ "Present Laughter Listing" tworivertheater.org, accessed 19 August 2015

External linksEdit