Hall of Fame
Ben Brooks began his performing career early on, acting in self-written and directed short films, comedy sketches and countless live performances. Once Ben had exhausted his captive audience of family and friends, Ben took his work public and started performing in high school plays and shows. At nineteen, Ben had his first book, “Lemonade Parade”, published by Canada’s top children’s book publisher, Kids Can Press. This publication was a natural build on writing Ben had started from a very early age. With this book, Ben had the wonderful opportunity to travel to hundreds of schools and perform for thousands of kids. At twenty-one, Ben moved to Vancouver where he began studying improv comedy. His training and performing there led him to continue with The Second City in Toronto. During this same period, Ben was also undertaking an acting/writing degree at York University, where he was also appearing in university productions. While still in university, Ben created sketch comedy duo Joe’s Convenience. Joe’s was a perfect blend of Ben’s comic performing and writing and in just under three years Joe’s became established as Canada’s preeminent sketch troupe. The Toronto Star writing “They are not only the best thing in Toronto, Joe’s Convenience is the best thing going in Canada.” The heat created by Joe’s saw Ben flown to New York to audition for Saturday Night Live, and shortly after landed Joe’s Convenience an option deal with Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video for their cutting-edge, TV concept. This deal saw Joe’s showcasing in front of hundreds of L.A. industry, (ACME Comedy Studio) indoctrinating them to their quick and unique brand of comedy. After their L.A. showcase, Ben was invited to bring Joe’s to Montreal’s Just for Laughs Comedy Festival. After eight sold-out hit shows, the Toronto papers were again raving, saying Joe’s, “Ate up the town!” and were, “The hit of the Festival!” The success of the festival landed Joe’s a ½ hr. special on the CBC show COMICS! This episode has since been rebroadcast numerous times, and was recently purchased by Canada’s Comedy Network. Following the excellent reception of his ½ hr. special, Ben was contracted by the CBC to write, perform and produce comedy material for the nation’s radio broadcaster. This resulted in Ben creating more than one hundred minutes of original comedy material for the CBC, and found Ben being asked to create a radio series. The result was “The Gig”, a ten part comedy/drama series. After moving to Los Angeles, Ben went to work writing and producing comedy for nationally syndicated radio – having numerous bits appear on some of the nation’s biggest shows. Ben also returned to the stage performing standup, while also working on several independent films, M.O.W.’s (Universal Soldier), shorts and national commercial spots (Compaq with Sting), as well as Comedy Central’s “Premium Blend”. Ben is currently in production on “Slacker Dads” (aka “The Greatest Dad in the World”), an internet series which is due to be released this year.