Instruments: Vocals
Date of Birth:
Place of Birth: Birmingham, Alabama

Ray Benson started tap dancing lessons when he was not quite 3 years old. By the time he was 5 he was in Gypsy with Fannie Flagg at Town and Gown, and at 9 was in Peter Pan with Cathy Rye. He was also taking piano lessons for six or seven years during this period.

When he reached college age, Benson went off to Auburn University. He joined the University Singers and during Summerfest's first season in 1979 he played the older Patrick in Mame with Patrice Munsel, and was also in Desert Song and Carousel, the season's other shows.

West Side Story for Town and Gown came next, with Benson playing Tony. During this time Benson met New York casting agent, Barry Moss.

Following a summer at Opryland where he met his future wife, Jodi, the pair traveled to New York City and met with Barry Moss. Within 10 days he was in rehearsals for Oklahoma for a national tour traveling all over the states for seven months. Almost from the start they landed major roles. Benson landed a role in Singin' In The Rain and also was understudy to star Don Correia. He got to play the leading role in the smash hit for several weeks when the star was out because of illness and later when he was on vacation.

Source: Alabama Music Hall of Fame

 

Credits:

Singin' in the Rain

[Broadway, Broadway Production, 1985]

Enemy of the King ("The Royal Rascal")

Ensemble

Dreamgirls

[US Tour, 1st National Tour, 1983]

Dave & The Sweethearts

Film Executive

Ensemble

Dreamgirls

[Broadway, Original Broadway Production, 1981]

Dave & The Sweethearts

Film Executive

Ensemble

Source: http://broadwayworld.com/bwidb/people/Ray_Benson/

 

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