Review Roundup: What Did The Critics Think of THE OTHER JOSH COHEN?
The musical - nominated for six Drama Desk Awards and the Lortel Award for Outstanding Musical upon its world premiere in 2012 - features Book, Music and Lyrics by David Rossmer and Steve Rosen, who co-star in the title roles, under the direction of Tony Award nominee Hunter Foster. Joining Rosen and Rossmer in the cast are Drama Desk nominee Kate Wetherhead (Legally Blonde), Hannah Elless (Bright Star), Elizabeth Nestlerode (Once Tour), Luke Darnell (Million Dollar Quartet Vegas) and Louis Tucci (Buddy); Zach Spound(Cruel Intentions: The Musical) will serve as swing.
Josh Cohen just can't get a break. He's single, broke and to top it all off, his apartment's been robbed of everything but a Neil Diamond CD. Yet, his luck takes a turn when a mysterious envelope arrives that changes his life forever. David Rossmer and Steve Rosen play the hapless-yet-warmhearted title character - one eventful year apart - in this hilarious romantic comedy about courageously owning the hand life deals you, and making your own luck.
Let's see what the critics are saying...
Jesse Green, The New York Times: To take it any further, as the authors may hope, would be to tempt fate - and also to undermine the modesty of the material. "The Other Josh Cohen" is a charmer, touching on real issues without pummeling them. It doesn't need to push harder or further; in knowing itself, it has already found its beshert.
Michael Dale, BroadwayWorld: With a fun score that sometimes riffs off of Josh's beloved Neil Diamond ("Neil life is better than real life," sings Wetherhead, costumed as the iconic singer for an intentionally cheesy, yet insanely catch number) and a clever book that's heavy on urban Jewish humor and pop culture references (Darth Vader makes an appearance.), The Other Josh Cohen is a solid winner.
Tim Teeman, Daily Beast: The Other Josh Cohen is rather like its plaid-shirted hero: an off-Broadway musical that, extremely considerately, won't let itself grate on you. This is a show about a white heterosexual regular guy down on his luck, and it is also about that same regular guy not giving up, and then singing at us about why we should never give up too.
Suzanna Bowling, Times Square Chronicles: Hunter Foster hones this piece in and gives it a delightful spin on a story many of us have gone through, minus the check. Though scrappy and tongue and check you will find yourself chuckling more than once. Nicole V. Moody's costume designs have just enough chutzpah, what with her Darth Vader and Neil Diamond attire.
Deb Miller, DC Metro Theater Arts: While we often use the term "non-stop laughs," The Other Josh Cohen truly provides them, with its clever jokes and witty sight gags, rollicking music and uproarious choreography, animated direction and multi-talented cast. This is one fabulously funny feel-good show that shouldn't be missed, and another triumph for Off-Broadway, in a season of stellar offerings.
Michael Sommers, New York Stage Review: Cleverly written by the Messrs. Rossmer and Rosen, The Other Josh Cohen is a light and lively diversion that's probably going to keep a smile on your face for its 95-minute entirety. Unpretentious in its style and scope, the musical brightly bounces along from one upbeat song to another. Although the score is filtered through a '90s pop sound that's always easy on the ear, its spruce lyrics and narrative thrust are total musical theater in their able construction.
Melissa Rose Bernardo, New York Stage Review: I can't believe I have fallen for a schlub with a cheesy mustache and a Star Wars shower curtain. But, hey, I'm not the only one who's succumbed to the silly charm of The Other Josh Cohen. There's a reason this zingy little musical has gone from downtown's Soho Playhouse to New Jersey's Paper Mill Playhouse to Rochester's Geva Theatre Center to, now, finally, off-Broadway's cozy Westside Theatre. Josh Cohen-played with a goofball grin by Steve Rosen, who also cowrote the book, music, and lyrics-is a drugstore candy-loving hopeless romantic, and the only Valentine's Day card he'll get is from his mom. How can you not root for this guy?