Born Sean Patrick Hayes on June 26, 1970 in Chicago, Illinois, Patrick Hayes was educated in Glen Ellyn, Illinois at Glenbard West High School and Illinois State University where he studied piano performance and conducting. He also worked as a classical pianist and music director at the Pheasant Run Theater in St. Charles, Illinois. He composed original music for Antigone production at the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago. Hayes was also part of The Second City improvisational comedy troupe. In 1995, he moved to Los Angeles to work as a stand-up comedian, stage and television actor.
One of Sean Hayes’ first roles was a small one in Winona Ryder’s Lucas, which was filmed in his high school. In 1998, Hayes made his professional film debut, playing Billy Collier in Billy’s Hollywood Screen Kiss. This brought him the attention of audiences and critics, as well as the executives of NBC who cast him in the comedy series Will & Grace. He played Jack McFarland on the show, an effeminate gay man with a passion for acting and theater. Hayes’ portrayal earned him several Emmy Award nominations as Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, and won it during his first. His success on the long-running sitcom was followed by appearances on movies like Cats & Dogs, as Lewis in the made-for-TV movie Martin and Lewis,and Pieces of April in 2003. His next role was in The Cat in the Hat in 2003, and Win a Date With Tad Hamilton! in 2004. His television credits include a guest role in 30 Rock and Scrubs. He has also served as executive producer for Bravo’s Situation: Comedy, and is also recognized for two winning scripts chosen by NBC, The Sperm Donor and Stephen’s Life. In 2006, he became a guest star on the Adult Swim cameo-filled show Tom Goes to the Mayor. Hayes has since established his own production company, Hazy Mills, with his production partner from college, Todd Milliner. His next role was in The Bucket List in 2007, with Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson.