Benjamin Schiff Platt was born September 24, 1993 and is an American actor, singer, and songwriter.
Platt was born in Los Angeles, the fourth of five children of Julie (née Beren) and Marc Platt. His father is a film, television, and theater producer whose credits include Legally Blonde, Into the Woods, La La Land, Mary Poppins Returns, and the musical Wicked. He and his family are Jewish.
He attended the Adderley School for Performing Arts in Pacific Palisades, performing in productions like Bye Bye Birdie and Into the Woods. Platt attended Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles, graduating in 2011. He then enrolled at Columbia University in New York but dropped out after seven weeks to fulfill his contract with The Book of Mormon. During his time at Columbia, he was a member of the campus a cappella musical group Nonsequitur.
At 9 years old, Platt played Winthrop Paroo in The Music Man at the Hollywood Bowl alongside Kristin Chenoweth. At 11, he appeared in a brief national tour of Caroline, or Change, by Jeanine Tesori and Tony Kushner. At 17, he played Jean Valjean in Kidz Theater’s production of Les Misérables. His other early roles include the role of Claude Bukowski in Columbia University’s production of Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical. He has also collaborated on a workshop of Alice by Heart, by Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater, a new take on Alice in Wonderland.
In 2012, Platt was cast as Elder Arnold Cunningham in the Chicago production of The Book of Mormon. The show premiered at the Bank of America Theatre in December 2012, after a week of previews. Platt later reprised his role as Elder Cunningham on Broadway at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre from January 2014 to January 2015. In 2012, Platt had a supporting role in the musical comedy Pitch Perfect, loosely based on the non-fiction book Pitch Perfect: The Quest for Collegiate A Cappella Glory. Platt played the magic-loving Benji Applebaum. In 2015, Platt reprised his role as Benji Applebaum in the sequel, Pitch Perfect 2. He has since made film appearances in Ricki and the Flash and Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk.
Platt became attached to Steven Levenson and Pasek and Paul’s then Untitled P&P Project in 2014, participating in early read-throughs and workshops. By 2015, the musical, titled Dear Evan Hansen, had begun production in Washington, D.C. at the Arena Stage with Platt originating the titular role. The overwhelming positive reception toward the production and Platt’s performance resulted in the show being transferred to Off-Broadway.
In 2016, Platt once again originated the role of Evan Hansen at Second Stage Theatre. In December 2016, Platt originated the title role in Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway at the Music Box Theatre.
In November 2018, it was announced that Universal Pictures and Platt’s father, Marc Platt, secured the film rights to the musical. In June 2020, Platt confirmed that he was set to reprise his role as Evan Hansen in the film
In 2017, Platt signed a record deal with Atlantic Records.
In March 2018, Platt and Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda released “Found/Tonight”, a mashup of the Hamilton song “The Story of Tonight” and the Dear Evan Hansen song “You Will Be Found”. Platt donated a portion of the proceeds to support the March for Our Lives anti-gun-violence initiative, and also performed on stage with Miranda at the rally in Washington, D.C. on March 24, 2018. In March 2018, Platt was confirmed to star in the indie drama Broken Diamonds.
In January 2019, Platt announced that his debut studio album Sing to Me Instead was scheduled for release on March 29, 2019. It was made available for pre-order, along with the songs “Bad Habit” and “Ease My Mind” a few days later. Following the release of his debut album, Platt embarked on his first North American tour in May 2019. The tour ended on September 29, 2019 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, in which the concert there was taped for release on Netflix. Platt released a new single “Rain” on August 23, 2019, followed by a music video on September 10, 2019. On April 21, 2020, Platt revealed on Instagram that the taping of his Radio City concert, in the form of a TV special entitled Ben Platt Live from Radio City Music Hall, was to be released on Netflix on May 20, 2020.
On August 29, 2019, it was announced that Platt would be starring in Richard Linklater’s film adaptation of Merrily We Roll Along alongside Beanie Feldstein and Blake Jenner. The project is set to be shot over the course of twenty years, with principal photography of the first sequence of the film having already been completed prior to the announcement.
Platt currently stars as Payton Hobart on the Netflix comedy-drama series The Politician, which tells the story of a very driven teen convinced that he’s destined to become President of the United States.
Platt released a new single, “So Will I”, on May 8, 2020. On May 20, 2020, Platt released Sing To Me Instead (Deluxe), which includes “So Will I”, “Rain”, and six songs recorded live at Radio City Music Hall, including cover versions of Brandi Carlile’s “The Joke” and Elton John’s “Take Me to the Pilot”. On June 8, 2020, Platt released “Everything I Did to Get to You”, a new single written by David Davis, which he picked as the winner of his episode of NBC’s songwriting competition show Songland.
On March 2, 2021, it was announced that Platt was in talks to star in the film adaptation of Grant Ginder’s novel The People We Hate at the Wedding. Amazon Studios is going to produce the film.
In April 2021, Platt teased the chorus of his new single, “Imagine”, on TikTok. The complete song was released on April 23, 2021, followed by a remix by Dutch electronic producer Tiësto on May 28, 2021. In July, he announced on Twitter that his second studio album, Reverie, for which “Imagine” was released as its first single, was to be released on August 13, 2021. Its second single, “Happy to Be Sad”, was released on July 16, 2021.
On June 25, 2021, Platt released a cover version of the song “Yoü and I” by Lady Gaga, as part of the 10th anniversary of the Born This Way album.
Platt is gay; he told his family when he was thirteen years old, and publicly came out in 2019, before the release of his song “Ease My Mind”.