‘It’s been so fun to perform for them’: Beetlejuice: The Musical takes over Detroit Opera House

Show runs through Feb. 12, tickets still available

Justin Collette (Beetlejuice) (Matthew Murphy, 2022)

DETROIT – If you like stripes and you’re into ghosts, there’s a Broadway show to die for. Beetlejuice: The Musical is taking over the Detroit Opera House.

“The Detroit crowds have been wild and it’s been so fun to perform for them,” Justin Collette said. The 35-year-old actor plays Beetlejuice. “The audiences in Detroit have just been really vocal which I love, because I interact with the audience and so I am engaging with the entire city apparently,” he continued, laughing.

The iconic duo of Beetlejuice and Lydia are touring the country. 18-year-old Isabella Esler plays leading lady Lydia Deetz.

“Especially with this kind of show, it has such a strong presence on social media, so it’s really crazy to be going all over the U.S. with all kinds of fans everywhere,” Isabella said. “It’s been really exciting.”

Beetlejuice: The Musical will be haunting the Detroit Opera House for two weeks.

There’s still time to get in on the action, especially if you like to dress up. “There’s a lot of people in cosplay, a lot of people screaming, which is perfect for this haunted show,” Collette said.

“It was interesting,” Esler said. “Sometimes it’s hard to see the front rows because of the lighting, but I saw people in the front row fully in costume - it was so cool!”

Social media and fan art helped fuel the Beetlejuice buzz, and both actors say it’s a responsibility they take seriously.

“People come with expectations not only from the film they saw but the Broadway version, so the game is to subvert those expectations. I want to give the audience what they want to see but also not do a worse version of someone’s take on this character,” Collette said.

Based on Tim Burton’s cult classic from 1988, the musical follows Lydia’s whirlwind adventure with a demon, who’s got a thing for stripes.

“Do you ever wish you could just Beetlejuice Beetlejuice Beetlejuice in real life?” Local 4′s Priya Mann asked Isabella. Without skipping a beat, Justin chimed in, “do you ever wish I could just appear?” Laughing loudly, Isabella turned to Justin and said “yes!”

Beetlejuice The Musical is playing at the Detroit Opera House through Feb. 12, 2023.

If you’d like tickets, head to Broadway In Detroit’s website by clicking here.

About the Author:

Priya joined WDIV-Local 4 in 2013 as a reporter and fill-in anchor. Education: B.A. in Communications/Post Grad in Advanced Journalism