Jonathan Larson was born on February 4, 1960. He grew up in White Plains, New York with his parents, Al and Nan, and older sister Julie. One of his best friends was Matt O'Grady, inspired Jonathan to write "Rent" and the character Angel is based on Matt, also Matt is "Michael" in "tick...tick...BOOM!". Jonathan was active in the music and drama department. He wrote his first musical at Aldelphi, "Sacrimoralimmortality" with David Armstrong.
Later on Jonathan wrote music often. For extra money even wrote money for kid's shows like "Sesame Street" and the video "Away We Go!", finally after much work, he created "Rent". Jonathan brought it to the New York Theater Workshop in 1994. "Rent" was revised and works on a lot; finally in 1996 it was ready for an opening. Jonathan did not live to see "Rent"; Jonathan collapse in his apartment while making tea at 3AM and died from aortic aneurysm.