Rachel Pickup is a British theatre, television and film actress. She was born in London on 15 July.
Before she graduated she got a leading role in the BBC series No Bananas, her first professional engagement. This was followed by a role opposite the late Alan Bates in Mike Poulton's Fortune's Fool. Other major theatre roles followed, including Irina in Mike Poulton's translation of Three Sisters for Bill Bryden, Olivia in Twelfth Night for Terry Hands, Helena in All's Well That Ends Well for Irina Brook, Portia in Julius Caesar for David Farr at the RSC, Sylvia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona and Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream also for the RSC.
In 2003 she appeared at The Old Vic in King Lear playing Cordelia. This was followed by Ophelia in Calixto Bieito's Hamlet, for which she won a Herald Angel award, and Helen of Troy in Troilus and Cressida for Peter Stein.
She is the daughter of actor Ronald Pickup, with whom she acted for the first time in 2008 in an episode of Midsomer Murders, and daughter of playwright Lans Traverse. Rachel starred at the Criterion Theatre in The 39 Steps and has worked with Sir Peter Hall several times, including his 2009 revival of Bedroom Farce. She was nominated for a Critics' Circle Best Actress Award for her performance in Miss Julie with Stephen Unwin at the Rose Theatre, Kingston.
In 2011 she moved to the USA to appear in the Shakespeare Theatre Company's production of An Ideal Husband, and subsequently moved from Washington DC to New York. In August 2011 she made her New York Off Broadway debut in the Irish Repertory Theatre's 20th Anniversary production of Dancing at Lughnasa.