Interview: BEETLEJUICE National Tour's Isabella Esler Talks Starring as Lydia, Her Audition Process & Favorite Show Moment

Esler shares what she loves about the character of Lydia Deetz, how it felt when she booked the role, and more!

By: Dec. 15, 2022
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Interview: BEETLEJUICE National Tour's Isabella Esler Talks Starring as Lydia, Her Audition Process & Favorite Show Moment
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The North American Tour of Beetlejuice the Musical will haunt 27 cities across North America, bringing ghost-with-the-most to a theater near you! Based on the Tim Burton film, BEETLEJUICE follows Lydia Deetz, a strange and unusual teenager whose life changes when she meets a recently deceased couple and Beetlejuice, a demon with a thing for stripes.

The North American tour features Justin Collette as Beetlejuice, Isabella Esler as Lydia Deetz, Britney Coleman as Barbara Maitland, Will Burton as Adam Maitland, Jesse Sharp as Charles, Kate Marilley as Delia, with Danielle Marie Gonzalez as Miss Argentina, Abe Goldfarb as Otho, Karmine Alers as Maxine Dean/Juno, Brian Vaughn as Maxie Dean and Jackera Davis as the Girl Scout. The cast also features Michael Biren, Ryan Breslin, Juliane Godfrey, Morgan Harrison, Matthew Michael Janisse, Kenway Ho Wai K. Kua, Sean McManus, Lee N Price, Nevada Riley, Trevor Michael Schmidt, Lexie Dorsett Sharp and CorBen Williams.

BroadwayWorld spoke with Lydia Deetz herself, the amazing Isabella Esler, to discuss her audition for the show, what she is most excited for with the tour, and much more.

What was your audition process like for the national tour of Beetlejuice?

My audition process was so great. It was an entirely new experience for me as I had never really done a professional NYC audition before, so I was learning new things every day. I had originally sent a self-tape around a year ago for the Broadway reopening. I sent in a video of me singing "Dead Mom" and then a couple months later I was asked to send in a couple more tapes. It was pretty casual, and a very fun experience. I was then asked to go to callbacks for the national tour over the summer. I was so nervous at first but everyone in the room was so incredibly nice and welcoming which definitely made me feel better. It was one of those moments that just felt right to me. I had been a fan of this show for a long time and it was just insane to me that I was now auditioning for this show that I had been listening to for so long. I got the call the following week!


And what were your thoughts when you learned that you booked the role of Lydia?

It felt truly surreal. It's one of those moments that you always dream of happening. And now that it did, I just couldn't believe it. I was with my parents when I found out and we were just so excited for this entirely new experience. I remember all of us were just screaming in the dining room after I ended my call, and I was asking myself if this is real! Truly such a great feeling.

What was the rehearsal process like?

It was so fun! Every single person that was a part of the rehearsal process was incredibly kind and truly helped guide me along the way. Especially with a show like Beetlejuice, you can't go a day in rehearsal without laughing like crazy.

What is your favorite part about this character?

I love how clever Lydia is. I think it is easy to just make Lydia come off as naive because she's a teen but I think there is so much more to her to explore. For one, she is always constantly outsmarting people in every way and is always quick on her feet. I think Lydia has so many dimensions in her character that make her really seem like a relatable teenager and I think that's why she's so likable. You are just always rooting for her.

Do you have a favorite moment in the show?Beetlejuice

The entirety of "Home" is probably my favorite moment in the show. After all of the crazy stuff that happens in the story, I'm able to just take a breath and go on this emotional journey with Lydia. It's definitely Lydia's turning point and I truly love when she reconnects with her father after feeling unheard for so long. I just think it's a very sweet moment for her.

What are you most excited for with taking Beetlejuice to so many places across the country?

Beetlejuice has such an amazing following especially on social media, so I am just so excited to be bringing this hilarious and fun show to so many cities. I'm sure many fans of the show will finally be getting the opportunity to watch it in their city and I really can't wait for them to enjoy it. I also can't wait for people who have never seen the show before to experience something entirely new. I really think it's great to watch a show like Beetlejuice with no expectations.

Do you have anything else you'd like to share?

I am just so grateful for these amazing opportunities and I really hope that everyone gets a chance to watch the show in a city near them!


Photo credit: Matthew Murphy

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