About Benjamin Maio Mackay
Benjamin is a director, producer, comedian, actor, host/MC, podcaster, musician, writer and all-round performer. They have been working for more than a decade, have hosted programs for ABC Radio and toured stage shows around Australia.
Benjamin is the artistic director and founder of Preachrs Productions. They've been thrilled to shape and grow the company over the past 12 years with the great help of Calixta Cheers, as well as all the artists that have been involved in the various projects.
Benjamin personally has been in over 75 plays/musicals with tens of thousands of performances and has been interviewed for radio and TV numerous times. They attended vocal and acting training through various institutions including NIDA, SA Casting, Heesom Casting and Urban Myth Theatre. Benjamin has a musical background and sings, as well as playing piano and guitar. Benjamin graduated the AMEB Speech and Drama course with honours and received an associate Diploma in speech and drama through Trinity College UK.
Benjamin has written, directed, produced and performed in numerous sell out shows at the Adelaide Fringe since 2008 - celebrating their 15th consecutive year participating in Fringes in 2022. They also performed one of their own shows at the 2014 Melbourne International Comedy Festival to great critical acclaim (4 1/2 Stars - Herald Sun).
In the Adelaide Fringe 2015 Benjamin directed, produced, adapted and performed in the critically acclaimed premier production of Great Detectives! They was then seen in the award winning Australian production of The Cripple of Inishmaan. As part of the 2016 Adelaide Fringe Benjamin adapted, directed and performed in the world premiere production of Matthew Reilly’s Ice Station Live. To date this is the only official adaptation of one of Reilly’s works.
Between 2016 and 2018 Benjamin focused on growing the company and toured a new version of Great Detectives, receiving 6 Broadway World Sydney Theatre Nominations including, Best Actor, Best Director and Best Play. They were also a supa-star guest MC at Supanova between 2017 and 2020.
Benjamin directed, produced, adapted, performed in and completed the sound design/editing for the official audio drama adaptation of The Phoenix Files. Based off the best-selling YA novels by Chris Morphew the series stars BAFTA nominee Paul McGann and Chaser Andrew Hansen. There is also a bonus soundtrack album available featuring Sean Braithwaite’s original score, which Benjamin produced.
Benjamin directed the professional premiere of Anne of Green Gables: The Musical, which opened in SA in December 2018 to critical acclaim. They also directed/produced a sequel to Great Detectives, Great Detectives 2! which premiered to 5-Star reviews in the Adelaide Fringe 2019 and 2021. Benjamin was one half of the comedy show, #BunnyPastards - Hardly Trivial Trivia - a sell out Fringe darling in Fringe 2019. They also performed in the Australian professional premiere of Sex and the Musical, as well as the improvised show Tales of Adventure.
Benjamin was also a guest comedian on a variety of panel and game shows across the Adelaide Fringe, including [Late Night] Panel Show and Gameshow of Thrones. Benjamin also hosted the Hutt St Variety Hour, which was a charity gala benefiting the homeless community of Adelaide. Over the 2019 Adelaide Fringe Benjamin performed in 55 shows. In early 2020 Benjamin debuted the 5-Star solo show, (Please) Validate Me, produced Andrew Silverwood: Call Me Janice, appeared in and produced Disney Delights and [Late Night] Panel Show and also directed and co-produced Dr Selflove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love My Thighs.
Benjamin, in 2020, directed and produced the audio version of the award nominated Socially [un]acceptable, which was released via streaming on April 24.
Benjamin produced & curated the award winning and record breaking Adelaide Fringe slates for Preachrs Productions alongside Calixta Cheers in 2021 and 2022. They are looking forward to working on RENT, as well as some exciting musicals across 2023.
About Calixta Cheers
Cali has been part of the arts community in Adelaide for more than 15 years, with amateur theatre, comedy and all things Fringe featuring heavily. From production to teching, venue management to directing, crowd control to ticketing, there isn’t much she hasn’t experienced - including writing and producing her own show in 2018 Adelaide Fringe season.
Cali joined the Preachrs Productions team in late 2020 and has since been a driving force behind the expansion into running more than 100 per shows per festival. Cali's work has included the 2021 & 2022 Fringes, both where Preachrs Productions had the largest local program in the Adelaide Fringe. The shows Cali worked on in 2021 Fringe included Great Detectives 2!, Disney Delights, Bella Green is Charging For It, It's Rabbit Night!!, Pretending Things are A Cock, [Late Night] Panel Show, Jon Bennett vs Jason Donovan, Jon Bennett: Playing with Men, Rich Jay: Being Rich but Dying Trying, JP: Normal People Are Just People You Don't Know That Well and Naked Cabaret.