Arthur Darvill

Last updated 09 January 2020

Arthur Darvill
(this image appears for illustrative purposes only and no attempt is made to supersede any copyright attributed to it)

Thomas Arthur Darvill

Born: Thursday 17th June 1982 (age: 41)


Thomas Arthur Darvill, known professionally as Arthur Darvill, is an English actor and musician. He is perhaps most recognised as Rory Williams, one of the Eleventh Doctor's companions in the television series Doctor Who, and as Rev. Paul Coates in Broadchurch (2013–2015). In 2013-2014 he appeared in the lead role in the theatre musical Once in the West End and on Broadway.

Early life

Darvill's mother Ellie is an actress and during Arthur's early childhood she worked with masks, puppets and live acting as a member of Cannon Hill Theatre, which was based at Midlands Arts Centre, and toured Britain and the world. She is also known as the puppeteer and voice behind Why Bird from Playdays. Prior to the birth of his sister, Darvill went on some of the tours, helping with the setting up of the shows. His father Nigel played the Hammond organ for artists including Edwin Starr, Ruby Turner, Fine Young Cannibals and UB40. Darvill attended Bromsgrove School in Worcestershire from 1993 to 2000.

Early work

Darvill joined Stage2 Youth Theatre Company at the age of 10. At the age of 21, Darvill moved to London with four friends from youth theatre, each having secured a place at a drama school. They moved into a house in White City together. Darvill trained in acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, and is trained in stage combat.

Darvill made his professional stage debut playing condemned criminal Harrison in Edmund White's Terre Haute, which ran at the Assembly Rooms during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. His performance was praised by Nicholas de Jongh of the Evening Standard and Susannah Clap of The Observer. Darvill appeared in Terra Haute‍ '​s transfer to Trafalgar Studios in 2007. His performance gained him a Best Newcomer nomination at the 2007 Evening Standard Theatre Awards.

Darvill played Rob in the 2007 monologue Stacy, in a performance The Times described as "compelling".Later that year, he appeared in the Vaudeville Theatre's production of Swimming with Sharks with Christian Slater, Helen Baxendale and Matt Smith (which gained him a London Newcomer Award nomination). In 2008, Darvill made his television debut in the ITV crime drama He Kills Coppers. The same year, he played Edward "Tip" Dorrit in the BBC serial Little Dorrit.

2010–2012: Doctor Who

Darvill began playing Rory Williams, companion to the Eleventh Doctor, in the fifth series of the BBC's science fiction show Doctor Who (reuniting with his Swimming with Sharks co-star Matt Smith). He became a regular character in the sixth series, and confirmed that he would be appearing in the seventh series; however, the seventh series was his last. His character, along with Amy, was written out of the show midway through Series 7; they were separated from the Doctor forever by the Weeping Angels in "The Angels Take Manhattan".

Darvill had a minor role as a stable groom in Ridley Scott's Robin Hood, and played Mick Gallagher in Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll. In summer 2011, he appeared in Doctor Faustus at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London. After his departure from Doctor Who he was cast in the highly-rated crime drama Broadchurch as the vicar, alongside former Doctor Who stars David Tennant and Olivia Colman.

Other work

Darvill is also a musician and composer and composed the score for Che Walker's 2008 play The Frontline at Shakespeare's Globe. In June 2009, the musical Been So Long, based on Ché Walker's 1998 play, opened at the Young Vic and in September 2013 another collaboration, The Lightning Child, opened at the Globe. Darvill had worked with Walker for a number of years since they had first met at RADA, developing the songs and music for the show. The musical was performed at the Latitude Festival in July and had a run at the Traverse Theatre in August. Darvill received a Judge's Discretionary Award from MTM for his music. In 2010, Darvill helped promote the solo album of Fyfe Dangerfield, playing with him on sessions for Graham Norton's show and on Xfm.

Darvill has undertaken a number of radio and voice projects, including Doctor Who audiobooks. In December 2011, he played Keith Moon for BBC Radio 4's Burning Both Ends. In 2012, he voiced Gulliver in Radio 4's Gulliver's Travels and Sam in the short film Penguin.

He gave an interview and appeared on the front cover of the October 2012 issue of Gay Times.

On 19 April 2013 he took over the lead male role of Guy from the musical Once, on Broadway, New York opposite new co-star Joanna Christie. The two also made an appearance on the 2013 Tony Awards to perform a number and to present the award for best scenery Darvill continued the role in the West End production from 17 March 2014 until 10 May 2014.

In March 2015, it was announced that Darvill had been cast as Rip Hunter in the upcoming spin-off of Arrow and The Flash.

Personal life

Darvill plays the guitar and keyboard and formed an indie band called Edmund in his teenage years, named after Edmund Pevensie, his favourite character in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. He enjoys cookery and attending the theatre and music concerts. He collects taxidermy. He is close friends with his Doctor Who co-stars Karen Gillan and Matt Smith. He supports Premier League football team Aston Villa.

Darvill was one of the celebrities, along with Tom Hiddleston, Jo Brand, E. L. James and Rachel Riley, to design and sign his own card for the UK-based charity Thomas Coram Foundation for Children. The campaign was launched by crafting company Stampin' Up! UK and the cards were auctioned off on eBay during May 2014. On 8 March 2015 Arthur announced on Twitter that he was engaged.

Biography from the wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA