Anthony Rapp was born on 26 October 1971 in Joliet, Illinois. He was raised by his mother and had an older brother and sister, Anne and Adam, a playwright. Anthony also lived with a cousin, Rachel, whom his mom adopted. He attended high school at Joliet West High School in Joliet and theatre camp at Michigan Interlochen Arts Academy. He continues to teach master classes there, and at Interlochen Arts Academy
Anthony was interested in becoming an actor for as long as he could remember. He started singing and acting professionally at the age of 9. He first performed on Broadway in 1981, at the age of ten, in The Little Prince and the Aviator. In 1987, Anthony stared in the movie Adventures in Babysitting. He went on to appear in many movies, best known for A Beautiful Mine, Dazed and Confused, and Six Degrees of Seperation, and shows.
In 1993, Anthony auditioned for the role of Mark in a 3 week workshop for a new play, RENT. He then went on to star in the off-Broadway version, the Broadway version, also opening the show in Chicago and London. He won an OBIE Award with the rest of the original cast for his performance. In 2005, RENT was made into a movie by Revolution Studios and Sony Pictures and Anthony played Mark yet again, making him the only cast member to follow RENT from the workshops to the film. He had a very strong relationship with Jonathon Larson who wrote many of the the RENT songs especially for his voice. Anthony appears in the RENT DVD special feature "No Day But Today" and can be heard on the RENT DVD commentary along with costar Adam Pascal and director Chris Columbus. Because he has been with the show so long, he is considered to be the unoffical RENT spokesman. Anthony preformed in a RENT 10th Anniversary Benefit where then entire Original Broadway Cast came back for one special preformance on 4/24/2006. Tickets cost $1000 and the event took place at the Nederlander Theatre.
In 2000, Anthony released a CD, entitled Look Around. He doesnt know what genre to call it, so he named it alternapop. He is also currently the head of a band named AlbinoKid. Anthony's musical infulences include The Cure, The Smiths, OMD, New Order, Crowded House, Talking Heads, Prince, Cyndi Lauper, the B-52s, Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush, REM, Nirvana, U2, Radiohead, Superchunk, the Beatles, Cole Porter and George Gershwin.
Anthony is bisexual and has been publicly out since 1992. He says he prefers guys over girls, but has had very fullfilling relationships with girls. He's an advocate in show business for LGBT rights and he considers himself a role model for young people strugging with their sexuality. Anthony's partner, Rodney, and him live together and have three cats. They are currently in the process of adopting a kid.
In 2006, Rapp released a book about his experiences with RENT and his mother's death. It is entitled Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and the Musical RENT. Over spring 2005, he traveled across the country doing book signings.