Irene Vanbrugh was born in Exeter in 1872. The sister of the actress Violet Vanburgh, her first performance was as Phoebe in As You Like It in 1888. In 1895 Oscar Wilde selected Vanbrugh and George Alexander to act in the first production of The Importance of Being Ernest. She also appeared with Beerbohm Tree and Robertson Hare. Irene Vanbrugh died in 1949.