MTV Artists

Millions of artists.
Your pocket.
One app.
Download now

Download on the App Store Stay in
My Browser
Jesse Tyler Ferguson (born October 22, 1975) is an American actor known for portraying Mitchell Pritchett on the ABC sitcom Modern Family, which has earned him four nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. Previously he played the role of Richie Velch in the CBS sitcom The Class. In September 2012 Ferguson announced his engagement to lawyer Justin Mikita, his boyfriend of nearly two years. They married on July 20, 2013, in New York City. Early years: Ferguson was born in Missoula, Montana, then moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he was raised. At age eight he decided to become an actor, and joined the Albuquerque Children's Theater, where he was a member for six years. At St. Pius X High School Ferguson played Albert Peterson in Bye Bye Birdie and General Bullmoose in Li'l Abner. He participated on the speech and debate team and graduated in 1994. He worked as a dancer/singer at Cliff's Amusement Park. After high school Ferguson attended The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in New York City. Career: In New York City Ferguson worked mainly in off-Broadway and Broadway theatre, including the Tony Award-winning The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, where he originated the role of Leaf Coneybear. In the summer of 2007 Ferguson starred in the Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Then he co-starred in the 2008 thriller Untraceable. On television Ferguson was among the large ensemble cast on the short-lived CBS sitcom The Class, playing Richie Velch. He plays the role of Mitchell Pritchett, the openly gay lawyer on the ABC sitcom Modern Family. For his performance Ferguson has received four consecutive Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (2010-2013). He has also appeared as a judge on So You Think You Can Dance. In March 2012 Ferguson was featured as Dr. Ilan Meyer in a performance of Dustin Lance Black's play, 8, a staged reenactment of Perry v. Brown, the federal trial that overturned California's Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage. The production was held at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre and broadcast on YouTube to raise money for the American Foundation for Equal Rights, a non-profit organization funding the plaintiffs' legal team and sponsoring the play. Tie The Knot: In September 2012, Ferguson with his husband Justin Mikita, who is a lawyer, started Tie The Knot, a non-profit charity effort to raise funds to support marriage equality for same-sex couples, using bow ties sold retail. They officially launched it as their engagement announcement in an online video where they explain only seven states at the time had marriage equality. In an interview Ferguson stated that he wanted to do something that was smaller and manageable in case it didn't work out as a business model. The foundation sells limited-edition bow ties with "proceeds going to organizations nationwide that are working toward marriage equality." Their collections are designed by the couple plus guest designers, and is sold by Tie Bar, a Naperville, Illinois-based online men's neckwear company. In January 2011, the couple was recruited by Lieutenant Governor of Illinois Sheila Simon to lobby legislators to pass SB10 which would allow same-sex marriage. The bill passed both legislative houses, and Governor Pat Quinn signed the bill into law, going into effect on June 1, 2014. In October 2013 Ferguson was named by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) as a celebrity ambassador for the LGBT community, in part for his Tie The Knot charity. Specifically for the ACLU's "Out for Freedom" campaign to "promoting the adoption of marriage equality across the United States." They noted that Ferguson travelled to New Mexico, his home state, to take part in same sex marriage efforts. New Mexico does not explicitly permit or prohibit same-sex marriage; it is the only state lacking a statute or constitutional provision explicitly addressing same-sex marriage. The couple's non-profit made a grant of $10,000 to the ACLU of New Mexico for same sex efforts. In November 2013, a pop-up retail store for Tie The Knot is located at the Los Angeles Beverly Center featuring the fourth collection from the couple, including professional athlete designs with NFL's Scott Fujita, and Chris Kluwe, WNBA player Brittney Griner. They are also bringing back every previously sold-out line including from Isaac Mizrahi and George Takei. The store is planning to be there through mid-January 2014. Filmography: Film Year Title Role Notes 2000 Sally Hemings: An American Scandal Young Tom Hemings TV Movie 2001 Ordinary Sinner Ogden 2004 Mercury in Retrograde Duane Short 2006 Griffin and Phoenix Student 2008 Untraceable Arthur James Elmer 2009 Wonderful World Cyril 2012 The Procession Short 2012 8 Dr. Ilan Meyer 2012 Red Short 2013 2013 Do Something Awards Honoree TV Movie Television Year Title Role Notes 2006-2007 The Class Richie Velch 19 episodes 2007, 2010 Ugly Betty Dr. Gabe Farkus Episode: Icing on the Cake (2007), Episode: The Passion of the Betty (2010) 2008 Do Not Disturb Larry 5 episodes 2009 The Battery's Down Shamus McKelvy Episode: "The Party's over" 2009-present Modern Family Mitchell Pritchett Main character 2011-2013 So You Think You Can Dance Himself 7 episodes, Guest judge 2012 Submissions Only Jared Halstead Episode: Another Interruption 2013 Web Therapy Steve Olson 3 episodes 2013 Hot in Cleveland Wes Episode: Love Is All Around 2013 Project Runway Himself Episode: Tie the Knot, Guest judge Theatre Year Title Role Notes 1998-1999 On the Town Chip Broadway Revival, November 19, 1998 - January 17, 1999 The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told Off-Broadway Little Fish Marco Off-Broadway Where Do We Live Newyorkers Hair Margaret Mead SantaLand Diaries A Midsummer Night's Dream Francis Flute Public Theater, (Shakespeare in the Park) The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) 2005-2008 The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee Leaf Coneybear Broadway, May 2, 2005 - January 20, 2008 2005 On the Twentieth Century Max Jacobs Special concert, September 26 2010 The Winter's Tale Shepard's Son Public Theater, (Shakespeare in the Park) 2010 The Merchant of Venice Launcelot Gobbo Public Theater, (Shakespeare in the Park) 2012 The Producers Leo Bloom Hollywood Bowl, July 27-29, 2012 2013 A Comedy of Errors Public Theater, (Shakespeare in the Park) Awards: 2005 Drama Desk Award Outstanding Ensemble Performance - The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, 2010 Screen Actors Guild Award: Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series - Modern Family

Source: Wikipedia

Text from this biography licensed under creative commons license