Laird Mackintosh was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. He studied at the Banff Centre School of Fine Arts (Alberta), l’Ecole Superieure de Danse du Quebec (Montreal), the National Ballet School (Toronto) and the School of Classical Ballet - created by Mikhail Baryshnikov during his tenure as Artistic Director - at American Ballet Theatre (New York).
At 21, he joined the National Ballet of Canada, under Artistic Director Reid Anderson, subsequently performing with the company in Canada, the United States and across the world in Japan, Hong Kong and Korea.
In 1993, Laird made his musical theatre debut in the Canadian production of “The Phantom of the Opera”. He played the role of Raoul for three years, and notable Phantoms he has performed opposite include Colm Wilkinson, Peter Carrie, Ciaran Sheehan and KISS frontman Paul Stanley. He also covered the title role of the Phantom, giving numerous performances in the part. In total, he gave over 2000 performances of the show at Toronto’s Pantages Theatre – and the production itself went on to become the most successful in Canadian history.
In 1997, Laird played Septimus Hodge in the critically acclaimed production of Tom Stoppard’s “Arcadia” at Calgary’s Theatre Junction.
At the same time, he began a very important relationship with Toronto’s Opera Atelier and it’s co-Artistic Directors Marshall Pynkoski and Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg. The company holds a unique place in the North American theatre community, producing opera, ballet and drama from the 17th and 18th centuries. Laird has performed in ten productions with the company, and roles have included The Music Master in “Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme”, the Narrator in “The Resurrection”, The Sailor in “Dido and Aeneas”, The Prologue in Pygmalion, The Speaker in “The Magic Flute”, The Soldier in “The Coronation of Poppea” and Amphimedon in “Persee”. He has also performed with O.A. at Apollo’s Fire, in Cleveland, twice at the Houston Grand Opera and on tour in Japan (twice), Singapore and Korea.
Other classical roles played at this time included Papageno in “The Magic Flute” for Summer Opera Lyric Theatre,The Soldier in ”The Soldier’s Tale”, for the Friends of Gravity, and Adonis in “Venus and Adonis”, for Arbor Oak.
Laird closed 1999 by spending a hilarious season playing the Prince in Ross Petty’s annual holiday panto “Cinderella” at Toronto’s historic Elgin Theatre.
In 2002, Laird joined the Stratford Festival of Canada, under the Artistic Directorship of the late Richard Monette, where he remained a company member for eight seasons, playing leading roles in many productions including Billy Buck Chandler in “My One and Only”, Lieutenant Joseph Cable in “South Pacific”, Cornelius Hackl in “Hello Dolly”, Rapunzel’s Prince in “Into the Woods”, Lord Evelyn Oakleigh in “Anything Goes” and Freddy Eynsford-Hill in “My Fair Lady”. He was also seen as Ewart Dunlop in “The Music Man”, Leonelo in ”Fuente Ovejuna”, Boo Radley in “To Kill a Mockingbird” and, as understudy, in the role of Mr. Bumble in “Oliver!”. In addition Laird performed a number of roles in workshops, including Ham in “Not Wanted on the Voyage” and Gabriel in “Evangeline”. For many years, Laird was a regular participant in the festival’s annual benefit for the Canadian Cancer Society, “A Grand Night For Stratford”. During his time at the festival, he was the recipient of two Tyrone Guthrie Awards.
For the Stratford Summer Music Festival, Laird was the co-creator of “Cheek to Cheek” – a tribute to the music of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers – which was one of the hits of the 2008 cabaret season.
Out-of-season at the Stratford Festival, Laird did two productions with Toronto Operetta Theatre: “The Land of Smiles”, as Gustl, and the world premiere of “Earnest, the Importance of Being”, as Algernon Moncrieff, based on the famous play by Oscar Wilde. On Canada’s East coast, he played Phil Davis in the Canadian premiere of “White Christmas” at the Neptune Theatre; and on the West coast, Robert Martin in “The Drowsy Chaperone” at the Vancouver Playhouse.
In 2008, Laird was cast in the original company of the (U.S.) 1st National Tour of Disney/Cameron Mackintosh’s “Mary Poppins”, which opened in Chicago on March 25, 2009 at the Cadillac Palace Theatre. He covered the roles of Bert and George Banks, and was the first actor ever to have played both parts. In February, 2010, he took over the role of George Banks in the 1st National Tour, playing opposite fellow-Canadian Blythe Wilson as Mrs. Banks, Gavin Lee as Bert and Caroline Sheen in the title role. On January 21, 2011 he made his Broadway debut in the role of George Banks with the New York company of Mary Poppins, at the New Amsterdam Theatre on 42nd Street with his previous tour-mates Megan Osterhaus (Mrs. Banks), Gavin Lee (Bert) and Ashley Brown (Mary Poppins). He would later also play, on Broadway, opposite Mary Poppins originator Laura Michelle Kelly. Finally, he reprised his role with the 1st National Tour, in all playing some 30 cities, including Los Angeles, Washington (The Kennedy Centre), Chicago (twice), Toronto and Mexico City.
In early summer, 2012, Laird played the role of Victor Prynne in the Pittsburgh Public Theater's production of Noel Coward's "Private Lives". His co-stars were Michael Brusasco, Victoria Mack and Amanda Leigh Cobb. Ted Pappas directed the show.
In August, 2012, Laird began rehearsals for the new revival of Frank Wildhorn's "Jekyll and Hyde" directed by Jeff Calhoun. Mackintosh played the role of Henry Jekyll's best friend and lawyer, John Utterson, opposite Constantine Maroulis in the title roles. Deborah Cox also starred as Lucy, with Teal Wicks as Emma and Richard White as Danvers. The show premiered at the La Mirada Theatre in La Mirada, CA and then played a 25-week national tour launched in San Diego, CA. It opened on Broadway on April 18, 2013 at the Marriott Marquis Theatre in Times Square.
On August 26th, 2013, Laird returned to the show that started it all for him - joining the Broadway company of "The Phantom of the Opera" in the role of Monsieur Andre. The production recently celebrated it's landmark 26th Anniversary, and continues to play to sold-out houses at the famed Majestic Theatre in the heart of Times Square. On January 18, 2014 Laird made his Broadway debut as the Phantom - a role which he now covers in addition to his regular track as Monsieur Andre.
On May 5, 2014 Laird began a limited engagement in the title role of the Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, bridging the gap between outgoing and incoming stars Hugh Panaro and Norm Lewis, respectively. The week-long engagement marked a true milestone in Mackintosh's career: officially stepping into one of the most iconic roles in theatre history.
Laird has also appeared in film and television: as Bob Kachler in “Rad” (Lori Loughlin), the Young Anwyn Noble in “Prince Charming” (Martin Short) and Don Giovanni in “Avenging Angelo” (Sylvester Stallone). He was the lead, Nikky Goldberg, in the independent film “Songbird”.