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- Listed: July 23, 2012 9:23 am
Ben Voss is a writer, actor and radio personality. He was born in Zimbabwe, grew up in the Ciskei and moved to South Africa in his teens. He was at boarding school at Uthongathi – South Africa’s first non-racial, coed, boarding school, where he matriculated in 1990. He went on to complete an honours degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Natal in Durban as well as a BCom honours in Human Resources.
After two years as a divisional engineer he started acting and writing, without any training (at the ripe old age of 25) in January 1998. Together with John van de Ruit (of Spud fame), he produced and performed the smash hit shows Green and Black Mamba to sell out audiences throughout Southern Africa. Both won all South Africa’s major stage comedy awards and led to a run at the Wimbledon theatre in London.
Ben is best known for his motor mouth Alter ego Beauty Ramapelepele. Beauty has scooped many theatre awards and garnered support on Radio where she is a regular character on both East Coast radio and Jacaranda FM. She?? recently returned from London’s Oval House Theatre and toured all of Southern Africa’s major cities including Durban, Cape Town, Pretoria, Harare, Gaborone and elsewhere. She has shared the stage with Pieter Dirk Uys’s “Evita” and is fast becoming a leading South African personality. Africa’s Edna Everage!
Ben’s other interests include radio sketch production for Kagiso Media and the writing of his first novel. His most recent film credit is as “Mr. Lilly in “Spud – The Movie”.
2010 – Natal Mercury Award – Best Performance in a Comedy.
2010 – Natal Mercury award – Best new South African Script.
2008 – Natal Mercury Award Best Performance in a Comedy.
2007 – Naledi Award winner – Best Play, Best Actor in a review and Best review.
2006 – Fleur de Cap winner, Best performance in review.
2005 – Durban theatre award – best script – Black Mamba.
2003 – Naledi Awards, Best Comedy Performance – Green Mamba.
2003 – Fool awards, Best New SA script – Green Mamba.
2003 – Fool awards, Best Comedy Performance – Green Mamba.
2002 – FNB Vita Award, Best Actor – Macbeth.
2001 – FNB Vita award. Best supporting actor – Twelfth Night
2002 – FNB Nominee – Best Actor, Best new script – Men’s Night
2001 – FNB Vita Award Nominee – Best Actor, Best Script – The Final Cut
2002 – Voted KZN Best Actor, Sunday Tribune SM Magazine
2000 – FNB Vita Award Nominee, Best New Comer – Final Cut
1998 – Best Actor, Playhouse Festival – Private Universe
1990 – Best Actor, Natal Eistedfodd – Royal Hunt of the Sun
Radio personality, writer and comic sensation Ben Voss is back with his razor-sharp, motor mouth alter – ego Beauty Ramapelepele in Bend It Like Beauty.
As the gap between Africa and the West widens, Beauty is torn between the capitalist trappings of western society and the familiar traditions of her home, South Africa. To keep her options open she has strengthened her ANC ties and at the same time taken an all expenses first class trip with the department of tourism to showcase South Africa to the old foe, England as well as some other western powers. That’s what her itinerary says anyway. But is she just looking to fast track her own immigration?
In Bend it Like Beauty South Africa’s loudmouth seers the colonizer she is trying to impress and skewers the ailing colony she is tired of living in. With vitriolic candor she dishes out her verdict on her trip to the United Kingdom and what it is like to be a South African abroad.
In the process she answers such pressing questions as: Should “British Museum” not just read “Britain – a Museum” Why do Indians in London talk with an English accent and why are western politicians so much more expensive? Also she checks out whether, on his visit to the UK, Jacob Zuma made it into Buckingham palace during the changing of the guard and showed the Queen his own crown jewels and could Julius get into Britain on a woodwork scholarship?
From an anal probe at Heathrow airport (the British were convinced she was smuggling cocaine) to her final speech to the South African cabinet she gives us a fly on the wall account of being a Black Beauty in Britain.
Ramapelepele who is fast becoming a recognized socialite and self made woman amongst South Africa’s business and political elite will enjoy a brief season where she shares a few secrets of her success.
Funny, fiery and fresh, Bend It Like Beauty has played in London for a three week season and now tours South Africa, taking in Durban, Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria, and The National Arts Festival in Grahamstown where Bend it Like Beauty won and Ovation Award for Best Comedy
Lighting and Technical Requirements for “Beauty and the B.E.E’ Show
Stage is to be a minimum of 3m deep by 4m wide
A change area behind or next to the stage is needed with a mirror for makeup
Cd player with appropriate speakers and Amp to suit venue.
Sound desk with channel for one microphone.
NB* 1 headset microphone is provided
A minimum of one powerfull spotlight so that the stage area is clear and lit. 4 Parcans in amber and red for atmosphere is a definite benefit. NB* A technician is to be supplied by client to run the lights and sound from the same position in the room. The technical running of the show is however very straightforward.
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