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Beetlejuice is a musical with music and lyrics by Eddie Perfect and book by Scott Brown and Anthony King. It is based on the 1988 film of the same name. The story concerns a deceased couple who try to haunt the new inhabitants of their former home and call for help from a devious bio-exorcist ghost named Betelgeuse (pronounced "Beetlejuice"), who is summoned by saying his name three times. One of the new inhabitants is a young girl, Lydia, who is dealing with her mother's death and her neglectful father.

The musical had a tryout at the National Theatre, Washington, D.C. in October 2018, prior to opening on Broadway at the Winter Garden Theatre on April 25, 2019. It is produced by Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures (a unit of franchise owner Warner Bros.). The show is scheduled to vacate the Winter Garden on June 6, 2020, but the producers are searching for a new Broadway house, with a national tour expected to begin in 2021, before Broadway shut down in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The production at the Marquis Theatre on April 8th 2022 and closed in January 2023.

Cast:[]

Character Actor
Beetlejuice Alex Brightman

u/s Will Blum (Broadway and Broadway Remount Opening)

Lydia Deetz Sophia Anne Curso (Washington and Broadway)

Presley Ryan (final 2 weeks of Broadway) Elizabeth Teeter (Broadway Remount)

Adam Maitland Rob McClure (Broadway)

David Josefsberg (Broadway Remount)

Barbra Maitland Kerry Butler
Charles Deetz Adam Dannheiser
Delia Schlimmer/ Miss Argentina Leslie Kritzer
Maxie Dean Danny Rutigliano
Maxine Dean/ Juno Jill Abramovitz
Otho Kelvin Moon Loh
Girl Scout Dana Steingold

Plot:[]

Act I[]

A group of people at a graveyard mourn the passing of Emily Deetz. Emily's daughter, Lydia, reflects on the death of her mother and her own inability to be noticed by her father, Charles ("Prologue: Invisible"). A millennia old demon named Beetlejuice appears and mocks the idea of living life to the fullest, as it will all be worthless once death comes ("The Whole "Being Dead" Thing"). Beetlejuice then tells the audience how as a demon, he is invisible to all living beings unless he gets a living person to say his name three times, and reveals that he has come up with a plan to accomplish this.

Beetlejuice then introduces Adam and Barbara Maitland. They are a normal married couple who desperately want to start a family, but are not emotionally ready and project their insecurities onto their hobbies. As Adam and Barbara reason to themselves why they're not ready for a child, they fall to their deaths through unstable floorboards in their home ("Ready, Set, Not Yet"). The Handbook for the Recently Deceased falls from the sky, but Beetlejuice burns it, wanting the newly deceased Maitlands to haunt their house and get a living person to say his name three times, which will allow him to be seen by all living beings. When Barbara and Adam awaken from their fatal fall and realize that they are dead, Beetlejuice reveals himself to the couple and offers to help them adjust to the Afterlife ("The Whole "Being Dead" Thing, Pt. 2"). Beetlejuice reveals to the Maitlands that the Deetzes have bought their house. He tells them that in order to remain in their house alone, they will have to scare the Deetzes away, and the Maitlands accept his help ("The Whole "Being Dead" Thing, Pt. 3").

While moving in, Charles reveals to Lydia that he wants to start a gated community, using the house as a flagship model home, and is having a dinner party with some business friends. Lydia expresses her desire for her mother to return, mentioning the fact that nobody seems to care that she's gone. Praying for her mother to send a sign that she's still there, Lydia vows to make her father acknowledge the fact that tragedy struck their family ("Dead Mom"). In the attic, Beetlejuice is trying to teach the Maitlands how to be scary. Despite his best attempts, Barbara and Adam are not scary at all ("Fright of Their Lives"). Beetlejuice becomes frustrated with the couple and abandons them, and they vow to scare the Deetz family away themselves ("Ready Set (Reprise)"). Meanwhile, Delia, a woman who Charles hired to be Lydia's life coach and is secretly his lover, tells Lydia how everything happens for a reason, but fails to get her in a positive state of mind ("No Reason"). After their session, Lydia meets the Maitlands as they are roaming the house trying to scare the Deetzes. Lydia wants to leave the house just as much as the Maitlands want her family out, so she tries to convince her dad that the house is haunted only to find out that he and Delia are engaged.

Feeling as if Charles is just trying to replace her mother, Lydia flees to the roof, where a depressed Beetlejuice laments that he will never be seen ("Invisible (Reprise)"). Beetlejuice becomes ecstatic when he realizes Lydia can see him and tries to convince her not to kill herself, with the intention of getting her to free him from his curse. Lydia teases Beetlejuice, but does not say his name. The Maitlands come to check on Lydia only to be possessed by Beetlejuice into saying positive things about him to further convince Lydia. Upon learning about possession and that any ghost can do it, regardless of skill, Lydia decides not to work with Beetlejuice and instead work with the Maitlands to ruin Charles' dinner party ("Say My Name").

At the dinner party, Barbara and Adam possess Charles, Delia, and their guests ("Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)"). However, instead of being scared, the investors see the ghosts as a selling point, making them more interested in Charles' project. Feeling desperate, Lydia resorts to summoning Beetlejuice. Now visible to the living and able to affect the world around him, he forces the Maitlands to the attic before throwing Charles, Delia and the investors out of the house, much to Lydia's joy.

Act II[]

A Girl Scout named Sky explains to the audience how she has a heart condition where anything shocking could stop her heart but nevertheless is excited to be a Girl Scout. She rings the doorbell of the Deetzes' house to be greeted by Lydia, who invites her inside ("Girl Scout"). Beetlejuice appears and frightens the poor girl into leaving the house. He summons more versions of himself to help Lydia scare every visitor that comes into the house ("That Beautiful Sound"). Beetlejuice tells Lydia that now that she lives and works among the dead, she should also follow their rules, and gives her a copy of the Handbook for the Recently Deceased. However, because she is not dead, Lydia can't open it. Lydia realizes the book could help her reunite with her mother, and runs to the attic for Barbara and Adam's help. Feeling once again alone and betrayed, Beetlejuice talks with his clones about how although he can be seen, he wants to leave the house to finally connect with people. He decides he must trick Lydia into marrying him, which will allow him to roam free in the living world ("That Beautiful Sound (Reprise)").

In the attic, Barbara and Adam help Lydia open the Handbook, when they realize they should have gone straight to the Netherworld instead of remaining in their house. Adam opens the door to the Netherworld, but Barbara shuts it and the Handbook, afraid of leaving the house. Lydia berates them because she hoped to use the book to summon her dead mother. She exits the attic in disappointment and anger. Barbara realizes that all of their fear has held the Maitlands back, and she and Adam decide to become bolder and better ("Barbara 2.0").

Delia, Charles, and Delia's guru, Otho, re-enter the house to rescue Lydia, bringing a box that can supposedly trap souls. Beetlejuice tricks Lydia by telling her that reading a passage from the book will resurrect her mother, but instead she unknowingly begins an exorcism of Barbara and is forced to agree to marry Beetlejuice to stop it ("The Whole "Being Dead" Thing, Pt. 4"). Beetlejuice stops the exorcism and opens a door to the Netherworld to send the Maitlands away for good, but Lydia jumps through the door, with Charles following. Enraged that his plan has failed again, he decides to kill everyone instead ("Good Old Fashioned Wedding").

Lydia and Charles enter the Netherworld to be greeted by Miss Argentina, who along with other Netherworld residents, urges her to return to the living world ("What I Know Now"). They then meet Juno, director of Netherworld Customs and Processing, who soon finds out they are still alive. Lydia runs from Juno, and frantically searches for her mother in the Netherworld, but is unable to find her. Charles finds Lydia in distress and reconciles with her ("Home").

Lydia and Charles return to the house where Beetlejuice is preparing to kill everyone. Lydia plans to trick Beetlejuice by marrying him, as Charles, Delia, and the Maitlands get him ready ("Creepy Old Guy"). The wedding brings Beetlejuice to life, allowing Lydia to stab him and kill him again, making him "Recently Deceased". Lydia and the Maitlands try to send him back to the Netherworld, but Juno appears, reveals herself as Beetlejuice's mother, and tries to take Lydia back with her. Beetlejuice stands up to Juno, having learned to appreciate life in his brief experience. Juno pretends to be moved by Beetlejuice's speech and throws him out of the house. The Maitlands, Charles, and Delia refuse to let Juno take Lydia. Beetlejuice then crashes through the wall riding a sandworm, which then eats Juno.

Beetlejuice then says his last goodbyes to everyone before leaving. The Deetzes and Maitlands rejoice in their victory and agree to share the house as they clean up and repair the damages done to it. Lydia accepts that although her mother is gone, there is still so much left to enjoy in life ("Jump in the Line").

Musical Numbers:[]

Act I
  • "Prologue: Invisible" - Lydia
  • "The Whole "Being Dead" Thing" – Beetlejuice and Ensemble
  • "Ready, Set, Not Yet" – Adam and Barbara
  • "The Whole "Being Dead" Thing, Pt. 2" – Beetlejuice and Ensemble
  • "The Whole "Being Dead" Thing, Pt. 3" – Beetlejuice†
  • "Dead Mom" – Lydia
  • "Fright of Their Lives" – Beetlejuice, Adam, Barbara and Ensemble
  • "Ready Set (Reprise)" – Barbara and Adam
  • "No Reason" – Delia and Lydia
  • "Invisible (Reprise)" – Beetlejuice
  • "Say My Name" – Beetlejuice, Lydia, Barbara and Adam
  • "Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)" – Delia, Charles, Maxie, Maxine and Ensemble‡
Act II
  • "Girl Scout" – Sky The Girl Scout
  • "That Beautiful Sound" – Beetlejuice, Lydia and Ensemble
  • "That Beautiful Sound (Reprise)" – Beetlejuice and Ensemble†
  • "Barbara 2.0" – Barbara and Adam
  • "The Whole "Being Dead" Thing, Pt. 4" – Beetlejuice†
  • "Good Old Fashioned Wedding" – Beetlejuice†
  • "What I Know Now" - Miss Argentina and Ensemble
  • "Home" - Lydia
  • "Creepy Old Guy" – Lydia, Adam, Barbara, Beetlejuice, Charles, Delia and Ensemble
  • "Jump in the Line (Shake, Senora) / Dead Mom (Reprise) / Home (Reprise) / Day-O (Reprise)" – Lydia, Barbara, Adam, Delia and Charles‡

Keys

  • † Not included on the Cast Recording.
  • ‡ Featured in the original 1988 film.

Awards and Nominations:[]

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2019 Tony Awards Best Musical Nominated
Best Book of a Musical Scott Brown & Anthony King Nominated
Best Original Score Eddie Perfect Nominated
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical Alex Brightman Nominated
Best Scenic Design in a Musical David Korins Nominated
Best Costume Design in a Musical William Ivey Long Nominated
Best Lighting Design in a Musical Kenneth Posner & Peter Nigrini Nominated
Best Sound Design of a Musical Peter Hylenski Nominated
Outer Critics Circle Awards Outstanding Set Design (Play or Musical) David Korins Won
Outstanding Costume Design (Play or Musical) William Ivey Long Nominated
Outstanding Projection Design (Play or Musical) Peter Nigrini Nominated
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical Leslie Kritzer Nominated
Drama League Awards Founder's Award for Excellence in Directing Alex Timbers Won
Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Musical Nominated
Distinguished Performance Award Alex Brightman Nominated
Leslie Kritzer Nominated
Drama Desk Awards Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical Leslie Kritzer Nominated
Outstanding Book of a Musical Scott Brown & Anthony King Nominated
Outstanding Set Design for a Musical David Korins Won
Outstanding Costume Design for a Musical William Ivey Long Nominated
Outstanding Projection Design Peter Nigrini Nominated
Outstanding Wig and Hair Design Charles G. LaPointe Nominated
Outstanding Puppet Design Michael Curry Nominated
Theatre World Awards Outstanding New York City Stage Debut Performance Sophia Anne Caruso Won
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