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John Barrowman

Date of Birth: Saturday, March 11, 1967
AGE: 52
Occupation: Actor Singer

Biography: An Scottish-American singer, actor, dancer, musical theatre performer and media personality. Born in Glasgow yet growing up in Illinois after his family emigrated to the United States when he was eight years old, Barrowman was encouraged to further his love for music and theatre by his high school teachers. He studied performing arts at the United States International University in San Diego before visiting Britain and landing the role of Billy Crocker in Cole Porter?s Anything Goes in London?s West End.

Since his debut in professional theatre, Barrowman has played lead roles in various musicals both in the West End and on Broadway, including Matador, Miss Saigon, The Phantom of the Opera and Sunset Boulevard. After appearing in Sam Mendes? production of The Fix, he was nominated for the 1998 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Musical and, in the early 2000s, returned to the role of Billy Crocker in the revival of Anything Goes.

Aside from his career in theatre, Barrowman has expanded his repertoire into film and television. He has appeared in various films including the musical biopic De-Lovely (2004) and musical comedy The Producers (2005). On British television, he is known for his acting and presenting work for the BBC, including his work for CBBC in its earlier years, his self-produced entertainment programme Tonight?s the Night, and his BAFTA Cymru-nominated role of Captain Jack Harkness, who appears in science fiction series Doctor Who and Torchwood. Barrowman has had a number of guest roles in television programmes both in the United States and in the United Kingdom. He appeared as a contestant on the first series of celebrity ice skating show Dancing on Ice while his theatrical background allowed him to become a judge on Andrew Lloyd Webber?s musical talent shows How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?, Any Dream Will Do and I?d Do Anything. In 2006, he was voted Stonewall?s Entertainer of the Year.

In addition to appearing in several feature films and television series, Barrowman has featured on more than a dozen musical theatre recordings including cover tunes found on his 2007 album Another Side and 2008?s Music Music Music. Both albums accrued places on the UK Albums Chart, as did his self-titled John Barrowman (2010), which reached number 11, his highest chart placing to date. Furthermore, Barrowman has published two memoirs and autobiographies, Anything Goes (2008) and I Am What I Am (2009), with his sister as co-author.

Barrowman was born in the Mount Vernon area of Glasgow; the youngest of three siblings. He lived in Glasgow for the first eight years of his life. His mother was a singer and worked as a clerk in a record shop while his father was employed by the Caterpillar heavy machinery company in Uddingston. In 1976, his father?s company relocated the family to Aurora, Illinois in the United States, where his father managed the Caterpillar tractor factory. Barrowman recalls his family as loving, but strict and mindful of etiquette: always polite and respectful towards others. Comparing the two countries where he was raised, Barrowman concludes: "Scotland gave us, as a family, closeness; America gave us the get-up-and-go." The family settled in Joliet, Illinois, where Barrowman attended Joliet West High School in the heart of a "quintessentially middle-class conservative town". Barrowman?s high school music and English teachers changed the future course of his life, his music tutor instilling in him the love of performing, and his English teacher encouraging Barrowman to realise his true potential. His English teacher moved him into a Gifted Programme and coached Barrowman for the school?s speech team. With the support of his teacher, Barrowman competed with other schools in statewide speech competitions, where he sharpened his skills reading scenes from plays.

As a freshman, Barrowman won parts in several musical productions and from 1983 to 1985 he performed in Hello, Dolly!, Oliver!, Camelot, Li?l Abner and Anything Goes. Looking back, he acknowledges that "without the support he received in high school, chances are that he would not now be appearing in royal command performances in the West End in front of the Royal Family or having Stephen Sondheim ask him to play opposite Carol Burnett." Barrowman spent his senior year shoveling coal for an Illinois power company. His father had arranged the job (and similar jobs for his brother and sister) to give Barrowman the experience of manual labour. Barrowman?s father told him: "If you want to do manual labour for the rest of your life you?ll know that when you do it; it?s a choice. But if you don?t like it, you?ll understand the importance of educating yourself and - if you decide what you want to do - being good at your craft or your skill." Barrowman worked for the power company for the entire summer, but did not like the job. Eventually, he convinced the company to move him to work in the storeroom. Barrowman graduated from high school in 1985, and became a naturalised citizen of the United States (although he maintains dual citizenship in the UK and the US). After he graduated from high school, he moved to San Diego, California, to study performing arts at the United States International University (USIU). As part of an exchange programme, he returned to the United Kingdom, in 1989, to study William Shakespeare for six months.

Barrowman met his partner Scott Gill during a production of Rope at the Chichester Festival Theatre in 1993, after Gill came to see Barrowman in the play. The couple have houses in London and Cardiff. In late 2005, Barrowman said he had no plans to marry. However, a year later, Barrowman and Gill became civil partners on 27 December 2006. Barrowman and Gill do not want to call their relationship a marriage: "We?re just going to sign the civil register. We?re not going to have any ceremony because I?m not a supporter of the word marriage for a gay partnership." Despite believing in God, Barrowman explains: "Why would I want a ?marriage? from a belief system that hates me?" A small ceremony was held in Cardiff with friends and family, with the cast of Torchwood and executive producer Russell T Davies as guests.

Barrowman is bidialectal. He learned an American accent after school children picked on his Scottish accent when he moved to the United States. His accent is often called Mid-Atlantic. On The Friday Night Project, Barrowman stated that he still speaks in a Scottish accent when he is with his parents

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