From left to right: Ian McKellen, Sean Mathias and Patrick Stewart celebrate "Waiting For Godot" opening night on November 24, 2013, at the Cort Theatre.
Sean Mathias with his former partner, Ian McKellen.
From left to right: Sean Mathias, Ian McKellen and Evgeny Lebedev at The Grapes public house.
Ian McKellen and Sean Mathias are giving an interview on "Waiting for Godot" and "No Man's Land".
In 1977, Sean Mathias began his career as an actor by appearing on the television in a small role in an episode of the BBC TV series "Survivors". The same year, he played the role of an Irish Guards lieutenant in the movie "A Bridge Too Far". The following year, in 1978, Mathias took part in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. He continued to act as an actor throughout the 1980s, appearing on TV and in different movies, such as "The Scarlet Pimpernel", "Priest of Love" and others. However, one of his most notable appearances in movies at that time was in the 1988 film "White Mischief" as Gerald Portman.
In 1988, Sean started his career as a theatre director with his first play "Exceptions". In 1989, he directed a revival of "Bent" at the Adelphi Theatre, a play by Martin Sherman, that had opened on Broadway in 1979. Sean continued directing in London as well as on Broadway. Amongst his first pieces was Anton Chekov’s "Uncle Vanya" and Alan Bennett's "Talking Heads".
In 1998, Mathias directed "Antony and Cleopatra" play in London, starring Alan Rickman and Helen Mirren. The following year, in 1999, he acted as a director for Tennessee Williams' "Suddenly Last Summer" at the Comedy Theatre (present-day Harold Pinter Theatre) in London.
In the early 2000's, Mathias moved to New York City, where, in October 2001, he directed Ian McKellen and Helen Mirren in August Strindberg's "Dance of Death" on Broadway. Later, in 2003, this play was directed by him in London and Sydney.
In March 2001, Sean directed an Off-Broadway production of "Servicemen" by Evan Smith. In April 2002, Sean directed "The Elephant Man" at the Royale Theatre (present-day Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre). Throughout the 2000's, he continued to direct different plays in several cities, including London, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles.
In 2004, he made his South African directing debut with Jean Anouilh's "Antigone" at the Rhodes Theatre at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival, starring the South African actor John Kani. In 2007, Mathias acted as a director for the novelist Edna O'Brien's play, "Triptych", in Johannesburg.
In 2009, Mathias became artistic director of the Theatre Royal Haymarket and opened his season with Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, starring Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart. In 2013-2014, he directed McKellen and Stewart again in "Waiting for Godot" and "No Man’s Land", this time on Broadway. His production of "No Man’s Land" was the highest grossing play in the history of the Wyndham's theatre.
In 2015, Sean directed "The Unbuilt City" play at the New York Stage and Film establishment. In 2015, his "The Exorcist" took place in Birmingham Repertory Theatre. The following year, the same play was directed by Mathias at Phoenix Theatre in London. In 2018, "Savage love" was performed at the Public Theater in New York City.
Despite the fact, that Mathias is best known as a theatre director, he directed the movie "Bent" in 1997, which won Best Feature Film in the Torino International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.
Sean Mathias is openly gay.
During the period from 1978 till 1988, Sean had a relationship with actor Ian McKellen. In 2007, he married his partner Paul de Lange.