Few entertainers today are as accomplished or versatile as Ben Vereen. His legendary performances transcend time and have become woven into the fabric of this country’s artistic legacy. His electrifying success is the result of rare talent, superb mastery and strong discipline. His first love and passion is and always will be the stage. “The theater was my first training ground. It taught me discipline, dedication and appreciation of hard work and values that will stay with me a lifetime. The stage sharpens the creative instrument and encourages you to go deeper inside and try new things.” states Vereen.
On Broadway, Ben Vereen has appeared in Wicked, Fosse, I’m Not Rappaport, Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, Pippin, Grind, Jelly’s Last Jam, and A Christmas Carol. His role in Pippin garnered him both the prestigious Tony Award and the Drama Desk Award for “Best Actor in a Musical”. Clive Barnes of the “New York Post” stated “Ben Vereen - unquestionably one of the finest performances seen on Broadway.” Ben has toured the country in Pippin, Sweet Charity, and Hair. Ben also headlined with Chita Rivera in Chicago, the first Broadway production to play Las Vegas. In 2002, he received the Black Theatre Award.
For over 25 years, Ben has showcased his versatility and creativity, performing countless one-man shows not only in the United States, but also Europe, Asia and the Caribbean. He was the first simultaneous winner of the “Entertainer of the Year”, “Rising Star”, and “Song and Dance Star” awards from the American Guild of Variety Artists (AGVA). He has also earned a coveted spot in the Casino Legends Hall of Fame. Vereen is currently touring his one man show, “Vereen Sings a Tribute to Sammy Davis Jr, featuring the music of Sammy Davis Jr.
While performing worldwide, Vereen’s acting credits continue to give us memorable roles that will forever be etched in our minds. Ben recently co-starred opposite Ciara and Patti Labelle in the Fox Feature, Mama I Want to Sing, and opposite Vanessa Williams in the And Then Came Love. In 2006, while filming Idlewild with the award winning group Outkast, Vereen served as the acting coach for both Andre 3000 and Big Boy. In addition, Ben has been coaching the singing sensation Usher both as an entertainer and an actor. Ben was featured in the movie, On The One - Preaching to the Choir directed by Charles Randolph-Wright. Additional acting roles include the unforgettable Chicken George in Roots and as Louis Armstrong in Louis Armstrong - Chicago Style, Anne Rice’s Feast of All Saints, Intruders They are Among us (Emmy nomination), The Jesse Owens Story, Ellis Island (Golden Globe Nomination), Lost in London, Salute to Liberty Special, Christmas in Washington and Faerie Tale Theatre’s Puss N’ Boots with Gregory Hines, and Zoobilee Zoo. His own network specials are Ben Vereen: His Roots (Seven Emmy Awards), Tenspeed and Brownshoe, and You Write the Songs. Vereen’s television guest appearances include OZ, Touched By An Angel, Second Noah, New York Undercover, The Nanny, Star Trek - The Next Generation, The Jamie Fox Show,
The Promised Land, and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air as well as recurring roles on Silk Stockings, Webster, J.J. Starbuck and Booker. In the early 90’s, he released a number of well-received children’s Sing-Along musical videos. Vereen’s film appearances include Sweet Charity, All That Jazz, Funny Lady (Golden Globe nomination), Why Do Fools Fall in Love, the animated movie Once Upon a Forest and The Painting which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. In 2004, Vereen was nominated for a “Career Achievement Award” by the Le Prix International Film Star Awards Organization.
In June of 2007, he celebrated Eartha Kitt’s 80th birthday in concert at Carnegie Hall to multiple standing ovations. Three months later, he honored Martin Luther King Jr. in The Dream Concert at Radio City Music Hall and presented the Outstanding Mini-series award for the 2007 Emmy Awards. For Nickelodeon, Ben provided voice-overs on the show Wonder Pets! Recently, Ben appeared on Lifetime’s Your Mama Don’t Dance, The View, and NBC’s Law & Order: Criminal Intent. He guest starred on ABC’s hit primetime drama Grey’s Anatomy for which he won the Prism Award and just wrapped the feature film An Accidental Friendship for Hallmark and the independent film 21 and Wake Up starring Faye Dunaway. In July, Ben performed in front of the Armed Forces for those men and women who have served in Iraq, truly a major highlight of his career. In October Ben will perform concerts in London, his tribute to “Sammy Davis Jr.”