Bintley was born in Huddersfield, England. He trained professionally in classical ballet at the Royal Ballet School in London. While training at the school, some of his choreography was seen by Sir Frederick Ashton, founder choreographer and artistic director of The Royal Ballet.
In 1976, Bintley was offered a contract to dance with the Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet, now the Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB). He received his first commission as a choreographer in 1978, creating the ballet The Outsider for that company. Later in 1985, he was appointed resident choreographer of The Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. He has subsequently created numerous works for the Royal Ballet, the BRB and as an international guest choreographer. In 1995, he succeeded Sir Peter Wright as artistic director of the BRB. In March 2018 he announced his plan to retire from the BRB at the end of July 2019. In his time he choreographed at least ten full-length and 12 one-act ballets for the BRB and commissioned a further 21 ballets by other choreographers.
- Still Life at the Penguin Cafe (1988)
- Hobson's Choice (1989)
- Edward II (1995)
- Carmina Burana (1995)
- Far from the Madding Crowd (1997)
- Beauty and the Beast (2003)
- Cyrano (2007)
- E=mc² (2009)
- Cinderella (2010)
- Aladdin (2012)
- Faster (2012)
- Prince of the Pagodas (2014)
- The King Dances (2015)
- The Tempest (2016)
- "Birthdays". The Guardian. 17 September 2014. p. 35.
- "Biography of David Bintley from Birmingham Royal Ballet". Archived from the original on 4 January 2009. Retrieved 3 March 2009.
- Biography of David Bintley from The Free Library
- "Interview with David Bintley by Ballet.co.uk". Archived from the original on 17 October 2008. Retrieved 3 March 2009.
- "David Bintley to step down as Director of Birmingham Royal Ballet". 7 March 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2019.
- "No. 56237". The London Gazette (Supplement). 16 June 2001. pp. 7–8.
- "Ballet, opera, TV, WMD and tropical medicine all feature in latest honorary degrees announced by University of Warwick". University of Warwick. 8 January 2015. Retrieved 18 December 2017.