Elizabeth Teeter officially joins the cast of Broadway’s Beetlejuice for the first time on April 8. Though she’s new to the role of Lydia, it’s with a sense of déjà vu that she returns to the Marquis. Last seen on Broadway in The Crucible in 2016, the then-teenager would trek two blocks south from the Walter Kerr Theatre to “chill out” in the lobby. Now, she spends her time backstage in the hotel’s own namesake Broadway theatre.
Though never announced, Teeter was originally cast as Lydia in 2020 and was in rehearsals when Broadway shut down. Two years later, “they reached out and brought me in to reaudition, see where I am. Now, I’m 20 and grateful I was offered the role again. It feels like time is picking up where it left off.”
As everything comes full circle, Teeter sees a particular connection with her character. “I think Lydia feels stuck, which is relatable after these past two years. We get to see her work through her pain and come out on the other side, and it feels like we’re beginning to do the same.” She further elaborates, “I love the little glimmers of hope we see in her.” In Teeter’s favorite song, “Home,” she explains, “It’s Lydia’s moment of ‘I don’t know what to do,’ and then she turns the corner. That’s a great moment and a great opportunity to have a song like that as an actor.”
Teeter is also excited to play off co-star Alex Brightman in duets like “Say My Name.” Returning to the Broadway stage for the first time since her early teens, Teeter says she’s becoming more grateful for her previous experiences. “In The Audience, I worked with Helen Mirren, and she really set an example of how you should lead a company, how you should be backstage, not just onstage. With The Crucible, I got to work with Ivo van Hove, Saoirse Ronan, Ben Whishaw, and all these incredible people.”
The actor was just 13 when she performed opposite Mirren and only a year older when The Crucible opened. In speaking about the impact of those experiences, Teeter reflects, “Sometimes, we take ourselves too seriously and things get overwhelming, but at the end of the day, we get to go onstage and make believe. If you’re telling an honest story, that’s the most important part. And I think something that Helen really instilled is it doesn’t matter what level you’re at or what you’ve done, you need to treat everyone with respect. It was the little things she knew would make an impact and still have an impact on me years later. She wanted it to be a shared experience. So, I have been thinking about the little moments lately. We’re all one big community, and especially coming back from the pandemic, I’m so grateful that we get to do anything, that we get to create art together.”