Russ was born in England and emigrated to Australia at the age of five. He first performed with the Royal Shakespeare Company at the age of 9 and has been performing ever since. He graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts drama school in 2007 and has performed nationally with companies including Thin Ice Productions, The Hayloft Project, Little Ones Theatre and Deckchair Theatre Company for the Perth International Arts Festival. Russ studied a post grad in Community Cultural Development in 2012. He spent 4 years working with groups of artists with disability at Arts Access Victoria. He currently also manages a program through Merri Community Health Services called YGLAM, which is a GLBTIQ youth theatre ensemble. In 2016 Russ was awarded the Commonwealth Nations Youth Worker of the Year award (Pacific Finalist).