Benny Claessens (b: 1981)is an actor and performer. In 2003, he studied at the legendary Herman Teirlinck Studio in Antwerp. He was later engaged at the Toneelhuis Theatre in that same city until 2006, during which time he collaborated with directors such as Luk Perceval, Tom Jansen, and Josse De Pauw. Claessens worked with director Sarah Moeremans and actor Louis van der Waal to create the project Jachtkamp. He also directed his own original work entitled Gollygosh no! For a second there I thought I was involved. From 2006 to 2010, he worked as a free-lancer on projects at the CAMPO arts center (Ghent), the Kaaitheater (Brussels), Les ballets C de la B (Ghent), Ultima Vez (Brussels), Dood Paard (Amsterdam), and Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz (Berlin). In 2009, Claessens received the Arlecchino Theatre Prize in Amsterdam for his role in the Dood Paard theatre collective’s staging of Ritter, Dene, Voss. From 2010 to 2015 he was a member of the Münchner
Kammerspiele, working with such directors as Johan Simons, Alvis Hermanis, and René Pollesch. He also gave guest performances at the Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg. Claessens received a special mention/award at the Münster Film Festival for his performance in Julie Kreuzer’s film Bumpy Night. In 2013, he collaborated with Risto Kübar on the project Spectacular Lightshows of Which U Don’t See the Effect. Then in 2015, Claessens and Jan Decorte worked together to create the performance Much Dance. Since 2015, Claessens has been a member of the NTGent theatre ensemble. He performs in Accattone (a coproduction with the Ruhrtriennale) as well as in De kersentuin (both are directed by Johan Simons). He also makes guest performances for René Pollesch at the
Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz in Berlin.