Groff at Outfest in 2013
Jonathan Drew Groff
March 26, 1985
|Education||Conestoga Valley High School|
Jonathan Drew Groff (born March 26, 1985) is an American actor and singer. Groff rose to prominence in 2006 for his performance in the lead role of Melchior Gabor in the original Broadway production of Spring Awakening , for which he was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical. He returned to Broadway in 2015 to play the role of King George III in Hamilton , a performance for which he earned a nomination for the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical. He also appeared on the cast recording, which won the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album.
Groff is also known for his television appearances, such as Ian Todd in the Starz political drama Boss ; lead-character Patrick Murray in the HBO comedy-drama series Looking , and its subsequent series finale television film, Looking: The Movie ; and the recurring role of Jesse St. James in the Fox musical-comedy series Glee . He voiced the role of Kristoff in Walt Disney Animation Studios' films Frozen and Frozen II . Since 2017, Groff has starred as FBI Special Agent Holden Ford in the Netflix period crime drama Mindhunter .
Jonathan Drew Groff was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, to Julie (née Witmer), a physical education teacher, and Jim Groff, a harness horse trainer. He has an older brother, David. Groff is a first cousin of singer James Wolpert, a semifinalist on the fifth season of The Voice .Groff was raised in Ronks, Pennsylvania. He is of German and Swiss descent.
When he was three years old, Groff fell in love with Julie Andrews' performance as Mary Poppins, watching a video of the movie over and over, and dressing up as the character for Halloween in a family home movie in which he also attempted to sing.
Groff's father's family is Mennonite; of his upbringing, he has said: "My mother's side of the family is Methodist, which is how I was raised. It was conservative in that I had strong values – sitting down and eating with the family every day, listening to authority and going to church every week and having perfect attendance at Sunday school. But at the same time, my parents always encouraged my brother and me to be happy with what we were doing. ...they never pushed my brother and me to be anything we didn't want to be."
Groff graduated from Conestoga Valley High School in 2003 and intended to attend Carnegie Mellon University, but deferred his admission for a year when he was cast as Rolf in a Non-Equity national tour of The Sound of Music . After the tour, Groff decided to move to New York City instead.While still living in Lancaster, Groff performed at the Fulton Opera House in The Sound of Music, Ragtime , Evita , My Fair Lady , Peter Pan , The Pirates of Penzance , and Rags and The Ephrata Performing Arts Center as Edgar in Bat Boy: The Musical and Ugly in Honk! .
Groff earned his Actors' Equity Association card in 2005, with the musical Fame at the North Shore Music Theatre. That same year, he made his Broadway debut as an understudy for the lead role and a swing for the musical In My Life by Joseph Brooks.Groff originated the role of Melchior Gabor in the Broadway production of the rock musical Spring Awakening . He played the role from its debut on December 10, 2006, through May 18, 2008, when he departed the production with his co-star and best friend Lea Michele. He had previously played the role in the original Off-Broadway production earlier in the summer of 2006. Groff was nominated for a Drama Desk Award and a Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Musical for his performance.
He played the recurring role of Henry Mackler on the ABC soap opera One Life to Live . His storyline about a school shooting was cut due to the Virginia Tech shooting in April 2007, and Groff only appeared in eleven episodes.From July 22 through August 31, 2008, Groff played as Claude in the Shakespeare in the Park production of Hair . He also appeared as Michael Lang in Ang Lee's comedy-drama film Taking Woodstock . Groff next appeared in the off-Broadway production of the play Prayer for My Enemy by Craig Lucas. In August 2009, Groff performed in The Bacchae as Dionysus, as a part of the Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park.
In 2010, he guest-starred in eight episodes of the Fox musical comedy-drama Glee as Jesse St. James alongside Lea Michele. [ citation needed ]Groff continued to guest-star as the character in subsequent seasons, including the final episode of the series. In August 2010, he made his West End debut in Deathtrap , at the Noël Coward Theatre, directed by Matthew Warchus.
From August to October 2012, Groff appeared as Ian Todd in the second and final season of the Starz series Boss .Groff then portrayed Ken in the Center Theatre Group's production of the play Red , alongside Alfred Molina. The show ran from August 1 through September 9, 2012. In March 2013, Groff and Molina reprised their roles for six more performances of the play, this time in the L.A. Theatre Works. These performances were recorded for broadcast on radio.
In 2013, Groff voiced one of the lead roles in Disney's animated feature Frozen . His character, Kristoff, is a rugged mountain man and ice trader. The film premiered on November 19, 2013.Following the film's massive commercial success and its ranking as the highest-grossing animated film of all time, the fifteenth highest-grossing film of all time, and the highest-grossing film of 2013, Groff reprised his role in the short film sequel Frozen Fever , which premiered on March 13, 2015.
Groff starred as Patrick Murray, a gay video game developer, in HBO's comedy-drama series Looking .On March 23, 2015, HBO cancelled Looking after its second season but greenlit a television film to conclude the story. In April 2013, Groff joined another HBO production, playing Craig Donner in the film adaptation of Larry Kramer's play The Normal Heart . He returned to the London stage on May 19, 2015, to star in a one-night-only concert of the musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying , at the Royal Festival Hall.
Groff starred in a production of the musical A New Brain , presented as part of the New York City Center's Encores! Off-Center staged concert series. The show was directed by James Lapine and took place from June 24 through June 27, 2015.On March 3, 2015, he joined the cast of the musical Hamilton , replacing Brian d'Arcy James in the role of King George III. He held the role for the remainder of the show's off-Broadway production, through May 3, 2015. He reprised the role in the Broadway production, which started performances July 13, 2015. Groff, along with the rest of the cast, won a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album for appearing as a featured performer on the original Broadway cast recording. He was also nominated for the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical.
In March 2016, it was reported that Groff would star in the Netflix series Mindhunter , executive produced by David Fincher and Charlize Theron. The series was released in October 2017, and he portrays Federal Bureau of Investigation agent Holden Ford, a serial killer investigator in the Behavioral Science Unit.Groff also starred in the second season of the series, which premiered on August 16, 2019.
In July 2017, Groff starred in the first podcast musical, 36 Questions, which was released in three parts.
In November 2019, Groff reprised his role as Kristoff in Frozen II . He sang a solo song for the movie, titled "Lost in the Woods". The film was released early on Disney+ in March 2020.
Groff was diagnosed with skin cancer in his early 20s.
Groff publicly came out as gay during the National Equality March in 2009and was romantically linked to actor Gavin Creel that same year. From 2010 to 2013, he was in a relationship with actor Zachary Quinto. Since early 2018, he has been dating New Zealand choreographer Corey Baker, whom he met while both were teaching at Christchurch International Musical Theatre Summer School (CIMTSS).
In April 2015, Groff was honored by the Point Foundation with the Point Horizon Award honoring a "trailblazer who has taken a leadership role as an advocate" of LGBTQ communities.In December 2015, he was honored by Equality Pennsylvania with the Bayard Rustin Award, which "recognizes a Pennsylvanian who is continuing the work to ensure that the LGBT community will be visible, accepted, and celebrated in our society."
|2009||Taking Woodstock||Michael Lang|
|2010||The Conspirator||Louis Weichmann|
|2014||Russian Broadway Shut Down||Nikolai the Athlete||Short film|
|2014||American Sniper||Young Vet Mads|
|2015||Frozen Fever||Kristoff (voice)||Short film|
|2017||Olaf's Frozen Adventure||Short film|
|2021||The Matrix 4||Filming|
|2007||One Life to Live||Henry Mackler||11 episodes|
|2010–15||Glee||Jesse St. James||Recurring role; 15 episodes|
|2012||The Good Wife||Jimmy Fellner||Episode: "Live from Damascus"|
|2012||Boss||Ian Todd||Main cast; 10 episodes|
|2014–15||Looking||Patrick Murray||Lead role; 18 episodes|
|2014||The Normal Heart||Craig Donner||Television film|
|2016||Looking: The Movie||Patrick Murray||Television film|
|2016||LEGO Frozen Northern Lights||Kristoff (voice)||Television special|
|2017–present||Mindhunter||Holden Ford||Lead role|
|2018||The Simpsons||Actor Playing Bart||Episode: "Bart's Not Dead"|
|2008||The Battery's Down||Himself||Web series • Episode: "The Big Apple"|
|2009||Web series • Episode: "The Party's Over"|
|2015||One True Pairing (Season 1)||Dennis||Web series • Episode: "What's 'Your' Nickname"|
|2016||One True Pairing (Season 2)||Web series • 4 episodes|
|2017||36 Questions||Jase||Podcast Musical • Released through Two-Up podcast channel|
|2019||Kingdom Hearts III||Kristoff|
|2002||Honk!||Ugly||The Ephrata Performing Arts Center|
|2004||Bat Boy: The Musical||Bat Boy||The Ephrata Performing Arts Center|
|2005||Fame||Nick Piazza||North Shore Music Theatre|
|In My Life||Understudy • Swing||Music Box Theatre • Broadway • Broadway debut|
|2006||Spring Awakening||Melchior Gabor||Atlantic Theater Company • Off-Broadway|
|2006–08||Eugene O'Neill Theatre • Broadway|
|2007||Hair||Claude Hooper Bukowski||Delacorte Theater|
|Prayer for My Enemy||Billy Noone||Playwrights Horizons • Off-Broadway|
|2009||The Singing Forest||Gray Korankyi • Walter Rieman||The Public Theater • Off-Broadway|
|The Bacchae||Dionysus||Delacorte Theater|
|2010–11||Deathtrap||Clifford Anderson||Noël Coward Theatre • West End London, UK|
|2011||The Submission||Danny Larsen||MCC Theater • Off-Broadway|
|2012||Red||Ken||Mark Taper Forum|
|2013||L.A. Theatre Works|
|The Pirates of Penzance||Frederic||Delacorte Theater|
|2015||How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying||J. Pierrepont Finch||Royal Festival Hall • West End London, UK|
|Hamilton||King George III||The Public Theater • Off-Broadway|
|A New Brain||Gordon Michael Schwinn||New York City Center • Lincoln Center|
|2015–16||Hamilton||King George III||Richard Rodgers Theatre • Broadway|
|2017||Hair||Claude Hooper Bukowski||Jazz at Lincoln Center • Lincoln Center|
|Sondheim on Sondheim||Performer||Hollywood Bowl|
|2018||The Bobby Darin Story||Bobby Darin||92nd Street Y • Off-Broadway|
|2019–20||Little Shop of Horrors||Seymour Krelborn||Westside Theatre • Off-Broadway|
|Year||Title||Peak chart positions||Album|
| US || AUS || CAN || IRE || UK |
|2010||"Highway to Hell"||—||—||88||—||89||Glee: The Music, The Complete Season One|
|"Run Joey Run"||61||64||45||12||27|
|"Another One Bites the Dust"||79||—||53||41||101|
|"Hello"||35||79||37||31||35||Glee: The Music, Volume 3 Showstoppers|
|"Total Eclipse of the Heart"||16||28||17||3||9|
|"Like a Virgin"||87||99||83||47||58||Glee: The Music, The Power of Madonna|
|"Like a Prayer"||27||28||27||2||16|
|2011||"Rolling in the Deep"||29||—||—||—||49||Glee: The Music, Volume 6|
|"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in the region|
|2007||Tony Award||Best Actor in a Musical||Spring Awakening||Nominated|
|Drama Desk Award||Outstanding Actor in a Musical||Nominated|
|Drama League Award||Distinguished Performance||Nominated|
|Theatre World Award||Outstanding Debut Performance||Won|
|Broadway.com Audience Choice Award||Favorite Leading Actor in a Broadway Musical||Won|
|Favorite Male Breakthrough Performance||Won|
|Favorite Onstage Pair (shared with Lea Michele)||Won|
|Favorite Ensemble Cast (with cast)||Won|
|BroadwayWorld.com Theatre Fans' Choice Award||Best Leading Actor in a Musical||Nominated|
|2009||Obie Award||Outstanding Performance||Prayer for My Enemy • The Singing Forest||Won|
|2011||WhatsOnStage.com Theatregoers' Choice Award||London Newcomer of the Year||Deathtrap||Won|
|2012||BroadwayWorld.com Los Angeles Award||Best Leading Actor in a Play (Touring Production)||Red||Nominated|
|2013||Behind the Voice Actors People's Choice Voice Acting Award||Best Vocal Ensemble in a Feature Film||Frozen||Won|
|Behind the Voice Actors Feature Film Voice Acting Awards||Best Vocal Ensemble in a Feature Film||Won|
|Best Male Lead Vocal Performance in a Feature Film||Nominated|
|2014||Gold Derby TV Awards||Best Comedy Actor||Looking||Nominated|
|EWwy Award||Best Actor in a Comedy Series||Nominated|
|NewNowNext Award||Best New Television Actor||Won|
|2015||Gold Derby TV Awards||Best Comedy Actor||Nominated|
|Point Horizon Award||LGBT activism||Won|
|Bayard Rustin Award||Won|
|CinEuphoria Awards||Best Ensemble Cast – International Competition||The Normal Heart||Won|
|2016||Tony Award||Best Featured Actor in a Musical||Hamilton||Nominated|
|Grammy Award||Best Musical Theater Album||Won|
|Broadway.com Audience Choice Award||Favorite Featured Actor in a Musical||Won|
|Favorite Funny Performance||Won|
|Favorite Diva Performance||Won|
|2017||Out100 Award||Entertainer of the Year||LGBT activism||Won|
|Satellite Awards||Best Actor in a Drama / Genre Series||Mindhunter||Won|
|2018||Dorian Awards||TV Performance of the Year – Actor||Nominated|
|2020||Satellite Awards||Best Actor in a Drama / Genre Series||Nominated|
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Note: A short clip from the home movie was played for the television audience.
Note: A short clip from the home movie was played for the television audience.