Stephen Mangan was born in the Ponders End in Enfield in 1968, and was educated in Hertfordshire. He attended Cambridge University earning a Bachelor’s degree in Law from Caius College, and went on to study at RADA for three years, when he graduated in 1994.
Upon graduating, Mangan concentrated on stage roles in London and around the UK such as tours of As You Like It, The Tempest and Twelfth Night. He then joined the world-renowned Cheek by Jowl and toured a production of Much Ado About Nothing to New York, Moscow, Barcelona, Stockholm and in the West End, and appeared in School for Scandal at the RSC. These performances saw Mangan nominated for an Ian Charleson Award, which recognises classical actors under the age of 30.
More West End roles came his way, such as Noises Off at the Piccadilly Theatre, The People Are Friendly at the Royal Court and The Magic Carpet at the Lyric Hammersmith. As he gained notoriety, he was offered more and more screen roles, including a part in the film Billy Elliot, Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years and I’m Alan Partridge.
In 2004, he landed a lead role in the Channel 4 series comedy Green Wing, was a soap opera-style sitcom set in a hospital. The series also starred Olivia Colman and Tamsin Greig, and won the first BAFTA Audience Award in 2005.
Mangan’s other screen work includes the film Confetti, voicing Postman Pat in a film adaptation of the children’s TV show, and Episodes, a sitcom about a married comedy team trying to remake their British hit TV show in Hollywood. The series starred Tamsin Greig and Matt LeBlanc and ran for five series.
In 2008, Mangan took on the title role in Matthew Warchus’ The Norman Conquests at The Old Vic. The play went on to run on Broadway at the Circle in the Square Theatre, and Mangan was nominated for a Tony Award for his role, with the play winning the best revival category. In 2012 he took on the role of a pregnant man in Joe Penhall’s Birthday at the Royal Court.
Mangan played Bertie Wooster in David and Robert Goodale’s play Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense at the Duke of York’s Theatre in 2013. The play was based on PG Wodehouse’s novel The Code of the Woosters, which features the “idle rich” Bertie Wooster and his valet Jeeves. Mangan starred in the show for six months, with the playing winning Best New Comedy at the Olivier Awards.
In 2018, Mangan returned to the West End stage in The Birthday Party, Harold Pinter’s play about a guesthouse in an English seaside town. Mangan plays Goldberg alongside a cast including Zoe Wanamaker. The following year, he starred in the world premiere of The Man in the White Suitat the Wyndham's Theatre alongside Kara Tointon. In 2021, he played Ebenezer Scrooge in Jack Thorne's adaptation of A Christmas Carol.
In 2023, he'll star in Private Lives at the Donmar Warehouse.