‘My time at Bird College was invaluable. The all round training was crucial for sending me out into the acting profession. You need technique, stamina and artistic creativity to make it in the entertainment world and Bird College nurtures these disciplines perfectly’
Gavin Lee graduated from Bird College in 1991 and recently starred in the role of Jerry Travers in the West End production of Top Hat. He previously originated the role of Bert in the original West End production of Mary Poppins and was then chosen for the Broadway role because of his critically acclaimed performance. He departed the Broadway production after nearly two years to launch the US National Tour, but returned to the Broadway production in August 2010.
Gavin has been involved in various musicals as a performer and choreographer. In 2004, he auditioned to be the Bert understudy in the London production of Mary Poppins, but managed to win the role outright. He was nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Musical at the 2005 Olivier Awards and the 2005 Theatregoer’s Choice Awards. For his Broadway performance, Lee was nominated for the 2006 Outer Critics Circle Awards (Outstanding Actor in a Musical) and the 2007 Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Musical. He also won the 2007 Drama Desk Award for Featured Actor in a Musical and an award for Outstanding Broadway Debut at the 63rd annual Theatre World Awards. In August 2007, Gavin was added to Sardi’s caricature gallery with other Broadway actors.
In June 2008, Lee performed in a concert version of Show Boat at Carnegie Hall. Gavin is married to Emily Harvey, an American actress who was playing role of Mme Firmin in London’s The Phantom of the Opera during his own run in London’s Mary Poppins.
In addition, he has worked as part of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera film adaptation, appearing as one of the singers/dancers in the “Masquerade” scene. Alongside former London co-star Laura Michelle Kelly, they performed as Bert and Mary Poppins in the America Celebrates July 4 at Fords Theatre in front of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama on June 6, 2010.