Local puppeteer and musician aims to bring joy to others during pandemic



Puppeteer and musician Spencer Cohen has always aimed to brighten people’s day with his performances, this was especially true during the coronavirus epidemic which has negatively impacted many lives.

“I hope I can brighten up people’s day with my performances, with my puppet work. Especially with what we’re facing now with this whole pandemic, I want to try and make people’s lives happier, ”Cohen said.

A native of Westchester, Cohen has performed throughout New York and Connecticut. He appeared in “The Howdy-Do Show” by Jim Kroupa at the 2015 O’Neill National Puppet Conference, held at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center in Waterford, Puppet Shakespeare Players in Manhattan, Paper Heart Puppets in Poughkeepsie, as well as the Peekskill Café. Recently he took part in the Josh and Tamra Show.

Cohen articulates his shows around humor, passion and kindness. Even with the lack of person-to-person communication, Cohen continues to connect with his audience on social media. He says he has been moved by the comments he has received so far.

“Through the use of social media, I hope to continue making videos of my puppets and music for people to enjoy,” Cohen said. “A neighbor of mine saw the video and told me to keep making fun videos because we need them right now and it was really inspiring. It moved me and told me I was doing the right thing because I guess I really help people.

As a singer and guitarist, Cohen performs both song covers and his original music, most of which falls within the Americana and folk genres.

“I sang my whole life before I could speak, I could hum tunes that I knew at the time,” Cohen said. “I started to participate in various notebooks, I took singing lessons. When I started high school I started playing guitar and doing open mic nights, ”Cohen said.

Cohen was originally inspired to become a puppeteer by the work of Jim Henson and the Muppets.

“From the minute ‘Christmas from the Muppets: Letters to Santa Claus’ started, I was hooked. From there, I started researching not just the Muppets but Jim Henson’s work as well, not just looking at the work, but looking at how the work was done, ”Cohen said.

Cohen took puppeteering lessons with the Puppeteers of America, Puppetitions, Brooklyn Puppet Conspiracy, The Puppet Kitchen and with Muppet builder and designer James Wojtal Jr.



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