Alex Brightman & Sophia Anne Caruso

Alex Brightman & Sophia Anne Caruso to star in Broadway-bound Beetlejuice

The pre-Broadway world premiere plays Washington D.C.'s National Theatre from October 14 to November 18, 2018.

Tom Millward
Tom Millward

Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures and Langley Park Productions have now announced initial casting for the previously announced world premiere of Broadway-bound musical Beetlejuice, which will be staged at the National Theatre in Washington D.C. from October 14 through to November 18, 2018, with an official opening set for November 4.

Tony Award nominee Alex Brightman has been cast in the titular role (famously played on screen by Michael Keaton), whilst two-time Lucille Lortel Award nominee Sophia Anne Caruso is set to take on the role of Lydia (originally played by Winona Ryder in the 1988 Tim Burton movie).

Mr. Brightman shot to Broadway superstardom after originating the role of Dewey Finn in Broadway's School of Rock, earning a Tony Award nomination for his performance in 2016. He had previously appeared on the Great White Way in Big FishMatildaWicked, and Glory Days.

Ms. Caruso made her Broadway debut as 'The Girl' in the 2016 Broadway premiere of Blackbird. She garnered great acclaim for her off-Broadway outings in Enda Walsh & David Bowie's Lazarus at New York Theatre Workshop (reprising her performance in London) and in MCC Theater's The Nether, picking up Lucille Lortel Award nominations in 2016 and 2015, respectively. She also starred as Brigitta von Trapp in NBC's "The Sound of Music Live!" in 2013.

Additional casting will be announced shortly.

Based on the hugely popular 1988 Tim Burton film with a story by Michael McDowell and Larry Wilson, the musical adaptation of Beetlejuice features a book by Scott Brown and Emmy Award nominee Anthony King, with an original score by Eddie Perfect. The production will be helmed by two-time Tony Award nominee Alex Timbers and choreographed by Connor Gallagher.

Synopsis: "It's showtime, folks, he's back! Beetlejuice is ruder, raunchier and frankly, more repellant than ever in this original musical based on Tim Burton's wonderfully demented film. Beetlejuice tells the story of Lydia Deetz, a strange and unusual teenager obsessed with the whole "being dead thing." Lucky for Lydia, her new house is haunted by a recently deceased couple and a degenerate demon who happens to have a thing for stripes. When Lydia calls on this ghost-with-the-most to scare away her insufferable parents, Beetlejuice comes up with the perfect plan, which involves exorcism, arranged marriages and an adorable girl scout who gets scared out of her wits. Plus singing and dancing, of course."

The creative team also features musical direction by Kris Kuku, scenic design by two-time Tony Award nominee David Korins, costume design by six-time Tony Award winner William Ivey Long, lighting design by Tony Award winner Kenneth Posner, sound design by four-time Tony Award nominee Peter Hylenski, projection design by Drama Desk Award winner Peter Nigrini, puppet design by Drama Desk Award winner Michael Curry, special effects design by Jeremy Chernick, illusions by Michael Weber, music production by Matt Stine, and dance arrangements by David Dabbon, 

Directed by Tim Burton and released in March 1988, "Beetlejuice" earned over $73 million at the US box office and also picked up the Academy Award for "Best Makeup". The film's cast was led by Michael Keaton, Winona Ryder, Alec Baldwin, Geena Davis, Jeffrey Jones and Catherine O'Hara.

Details for the Broadway premiere will be announced in due course.

(Photos courtesy of Polk & Co.)

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