Monday, March 11, 2019

Off Broadway Review: The Other Josh Cohen

David Rossmer and Steve Rosen. Photo:  Caitlin McNaney

The Other Josh Cohen
Book, Music and Lyrics by David Rossmer and Steve Rosen
Directed by Hunter Foster
Westside Theatre
Through April 28

By Lauren Yarger
What's It All About?
A quirky and fun rock musical reviewing events in the last year of the life of Josh Cohen (Steven Rosen) as told by Josh Cohen (David Rossmer). The stars are the book, music and lyric writers of this tale about a nice guy who cannot find a girlfriend and cannot catch a break. Suddenly, it seems as though luck might have come his way when he receives a large check in the mail from a long-lost relative. But this is Josh, the guy with all the bad luck. The check actually was intended for someone with the same name and so he begins a letter writing campaign to vent his frustration at the "other Josh Cohen."

What Are the Highlights?
A bouncy, catchy score and smart direction by Hunter Fosters which allows interaction between the two Joshs as well as with the ensemble transforming with wigs and costumes (Costume Designer Nikki V. Moody) into a variety of characters. Hunter creates characters and scenes as if from air and seamlessly has actors switching between action and playing instruments in this fast-paced 90 minutes. 

Filling out the cast are (amusingly credited in the Playbill as "A Lot of People," "A Bunch of People," "A Bunch of Other People," "The Rest of the People" and "At Least One More Person" -- if that makes you chuckle, you will enjoy the show -- are Jane Bruce, Louis Tucci, Cathryn Wake, Luke Darnell and Elizabeth Nestlebrode. 

What Are the Lowlights?
There is a bit of confusion at the top of the show as Josh's apartment is burglarized. the action takes place over a fairly long period of time as the audience is still entering and it is hard to know if we are supposed to be watching the action carefully or not.  It's  a small complaint.

More Information:
The Other Josh Cohen has been extended at the Westside Theatre, 407 West 43rd St., NYC through April 28.

Additional credits:
Scenic Designer Carolyn Mraz; Lighting Designer Jeff Croiter; Sound Designer Bart Fasbender; Music Supervisor Dan Lipton;; Co-Orchestrators David Rossmer and Dan Lipton. Musical Staging is by Whitney G-Bowley.

-- Language
-- Lord's name taken in vain

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

More Book Reviews Coming; Some Awards

The National Book Critics Circle (I am a proud member) will announce winners of its 2019 awards at a ceremony March 14 at The New School in New York City. The ceremony at 6:30 pm is free. Tickets to the reception following are available at

Look for more reviews of arts and theater-related books with a Christian perspective coming to this site soon!

Daily Inspiration

The Blind Side

Read about the real life mom from "The Blind Side."



Read Matt Mungle's review of the movie at

Lauren Yarger, Bio

Lauren Yarger has written, directed and produced numerous shows and special events for both secular and Christian audiences. She co-wrote a Christian musical version of “A Christmas Carol” which played to sold-out audiences of over 3,000 in Vermont and was awarded the 2000 Vermont Bessie (theater and film awards) for “People’s Choice for Theatre.” She also has written two other dinner theaters, sketches for church services and devotions for Christian artists.

Yarger trained for three years in the Broadway League’s Producer Development Program, completed the Commercial Theater Institute's Producing Three-Day Training and produced a one-woman musical about Mary Magdalene that toured nationally and closed with an off-Broadway run.

In 2008 she was a Fellow at the National Critics Institute at the O'Neill Theater Center in Waterford, CT. She writes reviews of Broadway and off-Broadway theater with a Christian perspective for Reflections in the Light ( and is editor of The Connecticut Arts Connection. She also is a contributing editor for

She also reviews books for Publisher's Weekly and is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. She formerly was Connecticut theater editor for CurtainUp, a national theater web site bsed in New York and a reviewer for American Theater Web.

She also served as Executive Director of Masterwork Productions, Inc. and worked in arts management for the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in Hartford and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.

She is a freelance writer and member of the Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle, The American Theater Critics Association, The League of Professional Theatre Women and The CT Critics Circle.

A former newspaper editor and graduate of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism, Yarger lives with her husband in West Granby, CT and has two adult children.

Copyright Notice

All contents copyright © Lauren Yarger 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013. All rights reserved. For reprint permission, contact

Scripture from THE MESSAGE Copyright 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

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