"It's showtime" for Broadway's Beetlejuice, which brings with it a big, fantastical fun house of Burtonesque magic

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April 15, 2019 12:00 PM
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You don’t have to say his name three times to catch a glimpse at the new Beetlejuice musical.

PEOPLE has an exclusive clip offering a sneak peek at all the action in the hilarious new Broadway show, now in previews at New York City's Winter Garden Theatre ahead of an April 25-opening.

Based on Tim Burton’s 1988 cult classic of the same name, the dark comedy comes to life on stage with a catchy score by Eddie Perfect and a witty book by Scott Brown and Anthony King.

Tony nominee Alex Brightman (School of Rock) steps into Michael Keaton’s shoes as the title role of everyone’s favorite freelance bio-exorcist.

Joining the Ghost with the Most is Sophia Anne Caruso (as Lydia Deetz, the death-obsessed teen played by Winona Ryder on screen), Tony nominees Rob McClure and Kerry Butler (Adam and Barbara Maitland, or Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis, as movie fans remember), and Leslie Kritzer and Adam Dannheisser (playing Delia and Charles Deetz, the roles Catherine O’Hara and Jeffrey Jones made iconic).

Alex Brightman, Rob McClure, Kerry Butler, Sophia Anne Caruso, Leslie Kritzer, and Adam Dannheisser in Beetlejuice
Matthew Murphy

All are present in Beetlejuice‘s teaser trailer, which recreates many of the fans favorite film moments — including the iconic dance sequence set to Harry Belafonte’s “Day-o (Banana Boat Song)” — while also offering up some thrilling new scenes.

Set designer David Korins and costume designer William Ivey Long have also given Burton’s twisted world a facelift while still calling back to the classic look of the movie (the filmmaker’s original artwork and sketches were a source of inspiration for the creative team throughout the design process).

“Welcome to a show about death!” the cast sings.

Michael Keaton in Beetlejuice
Geffen/Warner Bros/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

RELATED: Composer Danny Elfman Tells Stories From His Many Film Scores Including Beetlejuice

Back in October, PEOPLE and Entertainment Weekly premiered the first look at Brightman in Beetlejuice’s signature striped suit costume.

It’s a look director Alex Timbers (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson) said took multiple wig, makeup, and costume tests to perfect — his team trying ones closer to Keaton’s version of the character from the film and others “in the complete opposite direction” before landing on Brightman’s “younger, punkier” version of the devious demon.

“One of the things I love about Alex is, not only is he a great theater performer, but he’s also a writer, so he brings a sensibility that can stand outside the performance,” the two-time Tony nominee says of his star. “[His Beetlejuice] is definitely not a Michael Keaton impression. It’s his own. It’s filtered through the sensibility of Alex Brightman.”

Alex Brightman in Beetlejuice
Matthew Murphy

RELATED: It’s Showtime! Beetlejuice Comes to Life in the First Look at the Broadway-Bound Musical

Despite the show’s fantastical, supernatural elements, it’s one Timbers sees as a family story. “We’re embracing the spirit of dark whimsy,” he said, “but at the center of it, it’s a family drama, right?”

And while Beetlejuice has a “macabre wit,” it also engages with serious themes about life and death. As Timbers puts it, “The show deals with loss and grief and what it means to be dead and what it means to be alive, and what makes life worth living — the big, important questions.”

Tickets for Beetlejuice are on sale now.

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