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Romford, London, UK
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Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London's National Theatre (Apprentice)
Michelle Suzanne Dockery (born 15 December 1981) is an English actress and singer. She is most widely known for her leading performance as Lady Mary Crawley in the ITV (UK) and PBS (U.S.) television period drama series Downton Abbey (2010–15), for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award and three consecutive Primetime Emmy Awards in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series.
Full Name at Birth
Michelle Suzanne Dockery
Profile Bio Text
Michelle Suzanne Dockery (born 15 December 1981) is an English actress and singer. She is best known for her role as Lady Mary Crawley in the ITV drama series Downton Abbey for which she received Golden Globe and Emmy award nominations. For her role in the play Burnt by the Sun she earned a Laurence Olivier Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Her other notable stage credits include Pygmalion, The Pillars of Society and Hamlet.
Michelle Suzanne Dockery was born on 15 December 1981 in Rush Green Hospital, Dagenham, London. She has two elder sisters, Louise and Joanne. Her father, Michael Francis Dockery, was born at Athlone, Ireland, and worked his way up from driving a van to becoming a surveyor; her mother, Lorraine (née Witton) is from Stepney, East London. Dockery's maternal great-grandmother, Maud Malyon, was born in 1910 in Newham, East London, and was a domestic servant. Malyon was 17 when she married Dockery's great-grandfather, grocer's assistant William Henry Oakman, 18, at West Ham Register Office.
Dockery was educated first at the Chadwell Heath Foundation School (now the Chadwell Heath Academy) in Chadwell Heath, Essex. She was then trained at the Finch Stage School. After her A Levels she enrolled at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, graduating in 2004.
Dockery was a member of the National Youth Theatre, studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where she won the Gold Medal for drama and made her professional debut in His Dark Materials at the Royal National Theatre in 2004. In 2006, she was nominated for the Ian Charleson Award for her performance as Dina Dorf in Pillars of the Community at the National Theatre.
Dockery appeared in Burnt by the Sun at the National Theatre for which she received an Olivier Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. She won second prize at the Ian Charleson Awards for her performance as Eliza Doolittle in Peter Hall's production of Pygmalion at the Theatre Royal, Bath, which toured the UK and transferred to The Old Vic in 2008, and for the same production was nominated Best Newcomer at the Evening Standard Awards 2008. In 2010, she played Ophelia in Hamlet at the Crucible Theatre alongside John Simm.
Dockery made her television debut as Betty in Fingersmith in 2005. In 2006, she starred as Susan Sto Helit in a two-part adaptation of Terry Pratchett's novel Hogfather. In 2008, Dockery played Kathryn in Channel 4's The Red Riding Trilogy and played the guest lead of tormented rape victim Gemma Morrison in BBC's Waking the Dead. In 2009, she appeared in the two-part Cranford Christmas special for the BBC, and starred as the lead character in a modernised BBC adaptation of The Turn of the Screw.
Dockery came to public prominence in 2010 when she played Lady Mary Crawley in Julian Fellowes' series Downton Abbey, the first season of which was screened on ITV between September and November 2010. She was nominated for a Southbank Award in January for Best Breakthrough Performance in a TV drama. A second series of Downton Abbey was shown in 2011, followed by a special Christmas Day episode, with Dockery nominated for an Emmy Award in the category of Best Actress. The show's third series premiered on 16 September 2012 in the UK, and on 6 January 2013 in the US. A fourth series has been commissioned for broadcast and began filming in February 2013.
She starred with Charlotte Rampling in a two-part dramatisation of William Boyd's spy thriller Restless on BBC One in December 2012.
Dockery is a jazz singer. She sang at the 50th Anniversary of Ronnie Scott's Jazz club in London and has occasionally sung with Sadie and the Hotheads, a band formed by Elizabeth McGovern, who plays her mother in Downton Abbey. Dockery cites her musical influences as Peggy Lee, Melody Gardot and Billie Holiday in her more melancholy moods.
Couple Profile Source
Chadwell Heath Foundation School (now the Chadwell Heath Academy) in Chadwell Heath, Essex, Finch Stage School
Talent Agency (e.g. Modelling)
(2011) Voice over for Kellogg's Special K TV Commercial
Claim to Fame
Downton Abbey, Good Behavior
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