Thursday, August 23, 2018

Happy Birthday to Theater, Film, and TV Actor-Singer Andrew Rannells

Andrew Rannells was born today, August 23, in 1978. He is an American actor and singer known for roles in The Book of Mormon, Girls, and The Boys In the Band.

Rannells was born in Omaha, Nebraska. He was 11 when he did his first play. He did voice-over work and commercials, including a 1996 Grease spoof with Amy Adams. Rannells moved to New York City in 1997 after high school, studying theater at Marymount Manhattan College for 2 years before he started auditioning full-time and was landing roles.

Before winning his first Broadway role, Rannells had parts in a number of regional theater productions, including Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Miss Saigon, and Thoroughly Modern Millie.

In 2006, he won the role of Link Larkin in the Broadway production of Hairspray. This was his first Broadway show, what he considers his big break. 

Rannells originated the role of Elder Price in The Book of Mormon. For his performance, he was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Musical. He won the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album for his performance in the musical's Original Broadway Cast Recording. His last performance was June 10, 2012.

Rannells played a stripper in the 2012 film Bachelorette and played a lead character, Bryan Collins, in the 2012-13 television series The New Normal. He played the recurring role of Elijah on the HBO television series Girls.

Rannells temporarily replaced Jonathan Groff in the role of King George III in Hamilton on Broadway from October 27 to November 29, 2015, while Groff fulfilled pre-arranged filming commitments.

Most recently, Rannells starred in the Broadway revival of the iconic gay play, The Boys In the Band. It enjoyed a very successful limited run revival also starring Jim Parsons, Zachary Quinto, Matt Bomer, Charlie Carver, and Robin De Jesús.

Rannells has said he knew he was gay since high school. He came out to his family when he was 18, but by then they had already figured it out. He also came out to his theater friends but not at his all-boys Catholic school. 

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