We report on a polymer-on-silicon optical bench platform that enables the hybrid integration of elemental passive and active optical functions. Planar polymer circuits are produced photolithographically, and slots are formed in them for the insertion of chips and films of a variety of materials. The polymer circuits provide interconnects, static routing elements such as couplers, taps, and multi/demultiplexers, as well as thermo-optically dynamic elements such as switches, variable optical attenuators, and tunable notch filters. Crystal-ion-sliced thin films of lithium niobate are inserted in the polymer circuit for polarization control or for electro-optic modulation. Films of yttrium iron garnet and neodymium iron boron magnets are inserted in order to magneto-optically achieve non-reciprocal operation for isolation and circulation. Indium phosphide and gallium arsenide chips are inserted for light generation, amplification, and detection, as well as wavelength conversion. The functions enabled by this multi-material platform span the range of the building blocks needed in optical circuits, while using the highest-performance material system for each function. We demonstrated complex-functionality photonic components based on this technology, including a metro ring node module and a tunable optical transmitter. The metro ring node chip includes switches, variable optical attenuators, taps, and detectors; it enables optical add/drop multiplexing, power monitoring, and automatic load balancing, and it supports shared and dedicated protection protocols in two-fiber metro ring optical networks. The tunable optical transmitter chip includes a tunable external cavity laser, an isolator, and a high-speed modulator.