The Hague’s Shay Lachman (26) has only just graduated from theater school and is already shining as Aladdin in the musical of the same name. “The first time on stage as Aladdin I thought it was the most fun and exciting show ever.”

Shay studied music theater at the Fontys School of the Arts. In his senior year, he received a masterclass from Stanley Burleson (Spirit in Aladdin) who convinced him to audition for The Sound of Music. There he was also asked to audition for the cover position of Aladdin. “I got the part and I really didn’t expect that.”

Cover Aladdin

Cover of Aladdin means that Shay only comes on when protagonist Jonathan Vroege drops out. “Sometimes I know in advance, but not always. There were times when I suddenly had to fill in during the show because Jonathan got injured. Then you just have to switch gears and just go.” When not on stage as Aladdin, he joins the ensemble as a dancer and singer.

Aladdin tells the story of a street urchin from Agrabah who falls in love with Princess Jasmine. “In the beginning I had to search a bit and I had the feeling that I had to prove myself, because I had only just finished theater school. Ultimately, the character has to originate somewhere with you. By practicing a lot, I naturally developed my own Aladdin.”

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It is a show full of spectacle, but it also tells a beautiful story. “The love between the two is incredibly beautiful and I can really relate to the growth that Aladdin goes through in the play. I used to be a rebellious street kid too, but one with a good heart.”

Proud Mother

From an early age, Shay likes to be in the spotlight, but a career as musical actor was not self-evident. “I come from a Hindu family and theater is not seen as a profession there. I really had to convince them that this is where my passion lies. When my parents came to see my first performance at school, they saw that this really makes me happy. They were both in tears. That was a special moment.”

Shay has a very good relationship with his mother. Thanks to her, he was able to discover the theater world. “She has always supported me from the beginning to just try it. When I “Proud of your boy” I get goosebumps every time because it reminds me of her.”

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