By Anna Ruddle
“And in the back of my mind, I wondered if I could make it as an actor…”
Unlike many actors and actresses who learn to sing and dance before they can walk, young Aaron Lazar never thought he would be living the dream that he is today. Quite the Renaissance man, Lazar explored his many athletic and musical talents in his hometown of Cherry Hill, NJ. At Cherry Hill High, Lazar’s dedication to the soccer, baseball, football and track and field teams was complimented by his devotion to the theater group as he landed many lead roles such as Julian Marsh in 42nd Street and Tony in West Side Story. His well-rounded character and many athletic and musical talents led Lazar to choose to attend Duke University. Lazar spent his time studying pre-Med courses and also, as electives, received formal training in acting and classical voice. Though he took the MCATs in hope to attend Medical School, after graduation Lazar’s heart was somewhere else. “The MCAT scores are good for three years,” said Lazar. “And in the back of my mind, I wondered if I could make it as an actor.”
Lazar went on to study musical theatre at The College of Conservatory Music at the University of Cincinnati. Here, CCM trained him to be what they call a “triple threat student”: A student who can sing, dance, and act with equal skill. Lazar utilized his talent to land himself understudy roles in musicals such as Phantom of the Opera and Oklahoma, which later led him to be cast in the lead role of ‘Fabrizio Nacarelli’ in Broadway’s The Light in the Piazza at Lincoln Center. Landing this role was a life-changing experience for Lazar as The Light in the Piazza was a Tony Award winner and was broadcasted on PBS’ Live at Lincoln Center.
Lazar continued his success with The Light in the Piazza with a critical acclaim and a 2007 Drama Desk Award Nomination for his performance as ‘Enjolras’ in the 2006 Broadway revival of Les Miserables. He has also starred in A Tale of Two Cities as ‘Charles Darnay’ and recently starred in Broadway’s play Impressionism directed by Jack O’Brien. Other highlights of Mr. Lazar’s career include his television guest appearances on “Ugly Betty”, “New Amsterdam”, and “The Today Show”. Lazar has also been a guest soloist with the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall; Keith Lockhart and The Boston Pops; Marvin Hamlisch and The National Symphony Orchestra; South Pacific with Reba McEntire at The Hollywood Bowl; and also has toured with Barry Manilow.
Lazar believes that “audiences deserve an authentic, artistic experience that challenges them to open their hearts and to feel.” This philosophy of acting contributes to his past and present success.
Lazar is married to Ford model, LeAnn Lazar.
Jones, Keneth. Playbill.com “Broadway’s Tale of Two Cities Will Star Barbour, Lazar, Toro, Edelman, Burkhardt.” 30 Jun. 2008. Available from http://www.playbill.com/news/article/119100- Accessed 14 September 2009.
Lazar, Aaron. Aaron Lazar. Available from http://www.aaronlazar.com/. Accessed 14 September 2009.
The New York Times: Fashion and Style. LeAnn Garris, Aaron Lazar. 7 November 2004. Available from http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/07/fashion/weddings/07GARR.html Accessed 14 September 7 2009.
Niven, Felicia Lowenstein. “Acting the Part-Aaron Lazar” Lifestyle People Holiday Issue 2007. Available from http://aaronlazar.com/. Accessed 14 September 2009