With three older brothers and two younger sisters, Baker took dance, music and singing classes at a young age. His early life was as tough as that of the character he plays. "Growing up in New York, you have to learn very quickly how to handle yourself. My brothers and I took acting lessons as a way of expressing ourselves but boxing is a lot like acting. It's all about reacting. Somebody throws something at you, and you react to it."
His parents separated when he was nine and Baker followed in the footsteps of his mother, a former professional singer and dancer. At 14, he made his Broadway debut in the ensemble of Tommy Tune's My One And Only. He graduated from New York's Fame school--the High School for the Performing Arts--and received a Presidential Scholar of the Arts Award from President Ronald Reagan. "I was very excited about being able to take my mother to the White House for the awards ceremony," Baker says.
After gaining experience on stage in New York and in touring companies, Baker moved to Los Angeles to break into films and television. He appeared in the 1990 movie House Party and won guest spots on such series as NYPD Blue, Martin and Chicago Hope. He played the gang leader Kevin Kline runs into when his car breaks down in Lawrence Kasdan's Grand Canyon (1991) and was a semi-regular as the Jamaican music editor Russell on the hit FOX/Warner Bros. series Living Single.
Shaun Baker Facts
|Birthplace||Harlem, New York, USA|
|Tomorrow Never Dies|
|Notes on a Scandal|
|Black Men Can Jump|