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50 facts about English actor, theatre director and playwright Mark Rylance

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Mark Rylance
(Photo : Credit: Ben A. Pruchnie ) Caption:LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 19: Mark Rylance attends a gala performance of Matthew Bourne's 'The Car Man' at Sadlers Wells Theatre on July 19, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Ben A. Pruchnie/Getty Images)
Mark Rylance
(Photo : Credit: Ian Gavan) Caption:LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Mark Rylance attends the World Premiere of 'The Gunman' at BFI Southbank on February 16, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Ian Gavan/Getty Images)
Mark Rylance
(Photo : Credit: Nicholas Hunt ) More from this photographer
Caption:NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 04: Mark Rylance attends the 53rd New York Film Festival - 'Bridge Of Spies' - Arrivals at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center on October 4, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)
Mark Rylance
(Photo : Credit: Frederick M. Brown ) Caption:PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 19: Actor Mark Rylance speaks onstage during the 'MASTERPIECE “Wolf Hall”' panel discussion at the PBS Network portion of the Television Critics Association press tour at Langham Hotel on January 19, 2015 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
Caption:NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 08: Mark Rylance, winner of the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor for 'Twelfth Night' poses in a press room during the 68th Annual Tony Awards on June 8, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)
(Photo : Credit: Andrew H. Walker ) Caption:NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 08: Mark Rylance, winner of the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor for 'Twelfth Night' poses in a press room during the 68th Annual Tony Awards on June 8, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)

Rylance took the stage name of Mark Rylance because his original choice, Mark Waters, was already taken by someone else registered with Equity. Learn 50 facts about Mark Rylance.

1. His real name is David Mark Rylance Waters.

2. He is an English actor, theatre director and playwright.

3. He was the first artistic director of Shakespeare's Globe in London, from 1995 to 2005.

4. His film appearances include Prospero's Books, Angels and Insects, Institute Benjamenta, Intimacy and Bridge of Spies.

5. Rylance made his professional debut at the Citizens Theatre, Glasgow in 1980.

6. He went on to win the Olivier Award for Best Actor for Much Ado About Nothing in 1994, Jerusalem in 2010.

7. Won the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play for Boeing Boeing in 2008 and Jerusalem in 2011.

8. In 2014, he won a third Tony Award for Twelfth Night.

9. On television, he won the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actor for his role as David Kelly in the 2005 Channel 4 drama The Government Inspector.

10. Received an Emmy Award and Screen Actors Guild Award nomination for playing Thomas Cromwell in the 2015 BBC Two miniseries Wolf Hall.

11. Rylance was born in Ashford, Kent.

12. His mother and fathere were both English teachers.

13. His parents moved to Connecticut in 1962 and Wisconsin in 1969, where his father taught English at the University School of Milwaukee.

14. Rylance attended the University School of Milwaukee.

15. He starred in most of the school's plays with the theatre's director, Dale Gutzman, including the lead in a 1976 production of Hamlet.

16. He played Romeo in the school's production of Romeo and Juliet.

17. Rylance took the stage name of Mark Rylance because his original choice, Mark Waters, was already taken by someone else registered with Equity.

18. At the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) in London he trained from 1978-80 under Hugh Cruttwell.

19. He trained with Barbara Bridgmont at the Chrysalis Theatre School in Balham, London.

20. In 1980, he gained his first professional work at the Glasgow Citizens' Theatre.

21. In 1982 and 1983, he performed with the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) in Stratford-upon-Avon and London.

22. In 1988, Rylance played Hamlet with the RSC in Ron Daniels' production that toured Ireland and Britain for a year.

23. Hamlet toured to the United States for two years.

24. In 1990, Rylance and Claire van Kampen (later his wife) founded "Phoebus' Cart", their own theatre company.

25. "Phoebus' Cart" staged The Tempest on the road in 1991.

26. Rylance played the lead in Gillies Mackinnon's film The Grass Arena, and won the Radio Times Award for Best Newcomer.

27. In 1993, he starred in Matthew Warchus' production of Much Ado About Nothing at the Queen's Theatre, produced by Thelma Holt. His Benedick won him an Olivier Award for Best Actor.

28. He took the leading role as British weapons expert David Kelly in Peter Kosminsky's The Government Inspector, an award-winning Channel 4 production for which he won the British Academy Television Award for Best Actor in 2005.

29. In 2009, Rylance won the Critics' Circle Theatre Award Best Actor, 2009 for his role of Johnny Byron in Jerusalem written by Jez Butterworth at the Royal Court Theatre in London.

30. In 2010, Rylance starred in a revival of David Hirson's verse play La Bête. The play ran first at London's Comedy Theatre before transferring to the Music Box Theatre on Broadway, on 23 September 2010.

31. Also in 2010, he won another Olivier award for best actor in the role of Johnny Byron in Jerusalem at the Apollo Theatre in London.

32. In 2011, he won his second Tony Award for playing the same role in the Broadway production.

33. It was announced in October 2014 that Rylance would star in the title role of The BFG, director Steven Spielberg's film adaptation of the children's book by Roald Dahl. Filming was set to begin filming in 2015 with release scheduled the next year.

34. In 2007, he received a Sam Wanamaker Award together with his wife Claire van Kampen, Director of Music, and Jenny Tiramani, Director of Costume Design, for the founding work during the opening ten years at Shakespeare's Globe.

35. In 2013, Shakespeare's Globe brought two all-male productions to Broadway, starring Rylance as Olivia in Twelfth Night and in the title role in Richard III, for a limited run in repertory.

36. He won his third Tony Award for his performance as Olivia and was nominated for his performance as Richard III.

37. He is married to Claire van Kampen.

38. His wife Claire van Kampen, is a musical director, director, composer and playwright.

39. The couple started dating in 1987 while working on a production of The Wandering Jew at the National Theatre.

40. The couple married in Oxfordshire on 21 December 1989.

41. He has a sister named Susannah, an opera singer and author.

42. His brother, Jonathan, works as a sommelier at Alice Waters' restaurant Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California.

43. His stepdaughter is actress Juliet Rylance, who is married to actor Christian Camargo.

44. His younger stepdaughter, filmmaker Nataasha van Kampen, died in July 2012 at the age of 28, as a result of which Rylance withdrew from his planned participation in the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony. He was replaced by Kenneth Branagh.

45. Rylance has been a supporter of the indigenous rights organisation Survival International for many years.

46. He is the creator and director of "We Are One", a fundraiser that took place at the Apollo Theatre in April 2010. The evening was a performance of tribal prose and poetry from some of the world's leading actors and musicians.

47. Rylance is a patron of Peace Direct.

48. He performed the life and words of Henri, a man living in war-torn eastern Congo, during a presentation in New York City in 2011.

49. He is also patron of The Outside Edge Theatre Company. It works from the perspective of creating theatre and drama with people affected by substance abuse. It provides theatre interventions in drug and alcohol treatment and general community facilities throughout Britain, as well as producing professional public theatre productions that take place in theatres, studio theatres, and art centres.

50. Rylance became a patron of LIFT (London International Festival of Theatre) in 2013. He said about the festival: "I feel LIFT has done more to influence the growth and adventure of English theatre than any other organisation we have."

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Mark Rylance

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