Josh Rivedal is a one of a kind actor. Sly, yet charismatic and unmistakably candid and fragile, he has the ability to share his life story in a way that’ll make you feel like your conversing with a close friend. Being the star of his own one man show, “The Gospel According to Josh,” Rivedal puts these skills on for all to see, telling a compassionate tale of life, loss, under-achievement and perseverance, with a volcanic and panther-like intensity, resulting in a spectacular performance that has something for everyone.
Playing over a dozen characters in 75 minutes is no easy task, but Rivedal is charming and talented to pull it off. First discussing his upbringing in a super religious family in New Jersey, with his rough around the edges (and physically abusive and mentally unstable) father, to his zany exploits in the entertainment business, Rivedal runs the full gamut of emotions and has enough zest to keep you entertained throughout.
Simply put, the story here is one that has been told before, but never with the openness that Rivedal possesses. Not many people could describe an intense beating one second, to only make fun of a music teacher with a paralyzed face the next, but Rivedal does it with vigor and purpose. As a result, there isn’t one moment during the show where you’re lost, bored, or even close to contemplating being anywhere else but your seat.
A pretty bold statement considering all the diverse places and people Rivedal comes across during the course of the performance.
One reason why the guy is so easily relatable to is his delivery. Reminding one of Jeff Anderson (you know, the dude that played Randall in the “Clerks” films) you feel right at home and can’t wait to find out what happens next.
Inspired by true events, it’s a tale that is poignant and as smart and funny as it is sad, a testament to the human spirit that proves that Rivedal won’t quit fighting, regardless of what obstacles stand in his way.
After hanging out with him for 75 minutes, you’ll want to fight alongside him.