Shauntelle Benjamin is a word artist. While loving movement, dance and physical comedy, her primary occupation is the crafting of words into fun and interesting shapes. This may come in any form, and in fact, could include the use of turning what’s on the page into something physical, so she shouldn’t speak too soon.
Shauntelle is an Australian actor/writer/singer, born and raised in London. She trained at Actors Centre Australia, graduating in 2010, and since her arrival in the country in 2007, has valiantly attempted to take a holiday longer than two days, finally managing to go on holiday for three weeks in 2013.
Her ultimate aim as an artist is to understand every aspect of the creative arts in order to create meaningful, strong, risky theatre, using the stage, screen and anything else she can get her hands on, possibly a park.
Shauntelle suffers from/is blessed with synaesthesia, a sixth sense of sorts, that means she can see sounds. As well as presenting with the challenge of visual headaches just from noises, this means she has a love of noises that can’t be overcome through listening and appreciating alone. She loves to sing, loves to mimic, learn accents, learn poetry, write poetry, play with words, dance with them. She has an awful sense of rhythm physically, but the hop, skip and jump of words in the mouth give her a sensation similar to that of ecstacy, and make her more relaxed than a hash brownie at an Amsterdam coffee shop in spring. And words are cheaper. Which is great.
If man could live on words alone, she would be pudge, to say the least.
Shauntelle spent 2011 exploring theatre from many different angles, from writing (“Boxed In (and Vulnerable)” springboards, Springboards theatre), to assistant direction (“Feed’em Fighters” – Zenith Theatre) to stage management (“Feed’em Fighters” again, “The Cunning Little Vixen” – Sydney Chamber Opera, Carriageworks) to technical crewing (“No Cold Feet” – De Quincey Co., Cook and Phillip Park) and of course, in performance (“As You Like it” – Siren Theatre Co., Carriageworks, “A Quiet Night in Rangoon” – subtlenuance/The Spare Room, New Theatre, “How to lose sight” – Shh, site specific house in Parramatta). She learned a lot in twelve months and does not plan to purely adopt any of the above roles permanently.
Among other things, she spent 2014 touring as one the Bell Shakespeare Players, and as she writes this, is absolutely exhausted but absolutely thrilled with the experience, and there will be more to come in response to her essential rebirth as a performer and a person over the course of the year.
For a full performance CV, which hasn’t at all been provided, click here: