grew up in the Chicago suburb of Glen Ellyn, Illinois. He supported himself as a classical pianist and performed in a pop band for five years while attending Illinois State University where he majored in performance and conducting. Hayes began his professional career in the Chicago theatre community, serving as musical director at the Pheasant Run Theater for several years, appearing in several productions as well. He also appeared in the original production of Role Play
at the Organic Theatre. An alumnus of the famed Second City improvisational comedy group, Hayes also had gigs as a stand-up comic, performing at The Comedy Club in Los Angeles. While still in Chicago, Hayes won roles in television shows as well as the television movie A & P (1996), based on a story by John Updike, before landing the role which earned him an Emmy Award in 2001 - Jack McFarland on the hit NBC comedy series Will & Grace
(1998). He has also been honored with a SAG Award, an American Comedy Award and a TV Guide Award. He has been nominated for six Golden Globe Awards.
Sean made his feature film debut in 1998 in the title role of the art-house hit Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss (1998) which won critical acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival. He also made film appearances in Cats & Dogs (2001), as Jerry Lewis in the made-for-TV movie Martin and Lewis (2002), Wayne in Pieces of April (2003), The Cat in the Hat (2003) and Win a Date With Tad Hamilton! (2004). In 2007, Hayes was featured in a major role as Matthew, also called Thomas, in Rob Reiner's film The Bucket List, starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman. He was the voice of Brain in the 2008 film Igor. He has also guest starred in several television programs, including Scrubs and 30 Rock. On July 5, 2008, Hayes made his New York stage debut as Mr. Applegate/Devil in New York City Center's Encores! production of Damn Yankees opposite Jane Krakowski and Cheyenne Jackson. Sean Hayes was host of the 64th Annual Tony Awards in 2010.
: This profile was written in or before 2012
Read earlier biographies on this page
Sean Hayes Facts
|Dr. Seuss' The Cat In The Hat|
|Being John Malkovich|
|Tangled: Before Ever After|
|The Bucket List|
|Win A Date With Tad Hamilton!|