Julie Benko is an award-winning actress, singer, songwriter, and teacher based in New York City. Lauded by All About Jazz as "someone special... brimming with a fresh creativity and youthful vitality," she has performed on and off-Broadway, on national tours, and in regional theaters across the country. Her debut album was released October 2017. She is currently an MFA candidate at NYU-Tisch's Graduate Acting program, due to graduate in Spring 2021.
Acting highlights include performing in Broadway revivals and national tours of Les Miserables, Fiddler on the Roof, and Spring Awakening, as well as off-Broadway productions of Goldstein and Bar Mitzvah Boy. Favorite regional appearances include leading roles in Once (Wilde Award, "Best Leading Actress in a Musical"), Rags (SF Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award and Theatre Bay Area Award "Best Featured Actress in a Musical" nominations), The Fantasticks (BroadwayWorld Nomination for "Best Leading Actress in a Musical"), Our Town, The Golem of the Havana, Les Miserables, and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.
As a vocalist, Julie is equally accomplished. In addition to selling out concerts across the Northeast (often with partner and collaborator Jason Yeager), she has lent her voice to the 85th Academy Awards and the 70th Tony Awards ceremonies. In 2017, she took home the Gold Medal and the Johnny Mercer Award in the national American Traditions Vocal Competition, and later that year appeared as a soloist in the Savannah Philharmonic's Holiday Pops series.
In February 2020, Julie directed and starred in her first short, "The Newlywed's Guide to Physical Intimacy." The film premiered at New Faces New Voices Film Festival in July 2020, where it won an Honorable mention, and has since been included in numerous other festivals. For future screenings, check the "Upcoming" Page.
Julie regularly volunteers her vocal talents with Sing For Your Seniors and VocalEase, organizations that provide senior centers and nursing homes with Broadway-level entertainment at zero cost. She also donates educational services to members of Footsteps, the only organization in North America that assists people who wish to leave the ultra-Orthodox community. She is the proud guardian of "retired" street cat Thelonious Monk (also known as Monkey the Cat), whom she adopted from the ASPCA.
To keep up with Julie, follow her on Instagram/Twitter @JujujulieBee, or check the UPCOMING page to catch her wherever she may be performing next!