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Show Guide: Popularity Coach


It’s almost time for our next production, the world premiere of Popularity Coach, an original play about being true to yourself written by The Rose’s Playwright-in-Residence, Brian Guehring. We’ve assembled some information to help you and your family to get ready for the upcoming performance. Before you go to the show, you might want to take a few moments to review this “Know Before You Go” Guide so everyone will know what to expect from the performance!

Meet Rosie the Rover Reporter!

Meet Rosie the Rover Reporter! Rosie is here to share important information about shows at The Rose, give kid-friendly reviews, share insider tidbits and other “paw-sitively” helpful information! Watch for Rosie on our social media platforms, website and blog, as well as our Going to The Rose Guides emailed to families prior to each show. AND…if you are lucky, you might even get a chance to meet Rosie the next time you come to The Rose!

The Story You Will See

Cooper is once again starting a new school, and he desperately wants to be popular. However the first day of third grade could not have gone worse for Cooper, who is not like the sports-playing, video game-loving boys in his class. His neighbor Mia also would like to make more friends, but would rather just talk about sports than braid hair and take ballet. When the popular seventh grader Blake offers to be their Popularity Coach for a low, low price of $4 per lesson, Cooper and Mia sign up for the ten lesson unit (despite the scoffing from Blake’s older sibling AJ). As Halloween approaches, Cooper and Mia have to decide which advice they should follow and how important popularity REALLY is.
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Oct 7 – 23, 2022 |  75 minutes without an intermission
Coming to the opening night of Popularity Coach? Be sure to wear your school colors or a shirt supporting your favorite team and come to the show a little early! Young audience members will be invited to participate in a parade across the stage, showing off their school colors. You might even get the opportunity to do a shout-out in the microphone! (You might get to meet Rosie in the lobby before the show as well!)

The Characters You Will Meet

  • COOPER: Cooper is a 3rd grade boy who LOVES theater, being dramatic, and all things sparkly. He sometimes doesn’t fit in with other boys because of his interests and big personality.
  • MIA: Mia is a 3rd grade girl who LOVES football, baseball, soccer, you name it! She sometimes doesn’t fit in with other girls because of her interests and big personality.
  • BLAKE: Blake is an overconfident 7th grade boy, who starts up his own business as a Popularity Coach.
  • AJ: AJ is a confident, laidback 8th grader, and Blake’s older sibling. AJ doesn’t care very much about social expectations, and loves anime.

Know Before You Go

Here are some things your family might like to “Know Before You Go”
  • This show contains gender-based bullying for many characters who do not fit typical (and sometimes harmful) expectations (e.g. “boys liking girl things” and “girls liking boy things”).
  • This show contains a verbal argument between siblings.
  • This show talks about being unpopular, and struggling to make friends and fit in.
  • This show is partially about gender identity; Blake’s older sibling, AJ, is non-binary, and uses they/them pronouns.

From Story to Stage

  • Popularity Coach has been in development for many years at The Rose, as a new play written by our playwright-in-residence, Brian Guehring!
  • In June 2019, the play was selected for development at New York University’s prestigious New Plays for Young Audiences Program, and received a developmental reading in NYC with several Graduate Students and New York actors. It even got a mention in the New York Times!
  • The production of Popularity Coach at The Rose will be the first time the show will be fully presented on stage — this is the world premiere of the show!
  • Many of the actors performing on stage are Rose students who have been taking classes at The Rose in acting, dance, voice and musical theater. The director, Taylor Adams, was a Rose Kid who went on to study theater in college, was a Rose teaching artist fellow and is now leading the production of Popularity Coach!
Theater Location
The Rose is located in downtown Omaha at 2001 Farnam Street on the southwest corner of 20th & Farnam Streets.
From west Omaha, take I-80 East to 1-480 North and exit onto 20th Street. The Rose is located on Farnam Street, approximately three blocks south of the 20th Street exit.
Convenient Parking
The closest and most convenient parking is available for $2 in the garage at 19th & Harney, courtesy of the Omaha Douglas Public Building Commission (1910 Harney St., Omaha, NE 68102). Parking meters surrounding the theater are active from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday, with free parking available on Sundays and holidays. A variety of parking lots are available around the theater, as well, ranging in cost from $2-$5.

While at The Rose

Join Our Post-Performance Q&A Session!
A few minutes after the performance, our actors will conduct a Question & Answer session from the stage. It’s a wonderful opportunity to learn more about the scenery, costumes, special effects, and other aspects of the production. The actors may even have a question or two for you about the story.
Meet the Cast & Get an Autograph!

Some performers will be available after the show to say hello, pose in pictures, and sign their autographs for you. You can meet them on the mezzanine level right outside the entrance to our balcony level seats.Take Home a Souvenir!
The Rose Guild presents a souvenir stand before and after each performance offering a variety of fun and inexpensive show-related mementos. The proceeds help to support the great education programs at The Rose Theater!



The Rose Theater
2001 Farnam Street
Omaha, Nebraska 68102




Wait, There’s More!

Grab a Theater Class Brochure!
If you like what you saw on the stage and think you’d like to be a part of it, try taking a theater class here at The Rose Theater. We offer a wide range of arts classes for every interest and experience level.


Please visit our website to read director’s notes and view production photos.

Box Office Assistance

The Rose Box Office is open Monday through Friday from 9 am to 4:30 pm at (402) 345-4849. Information and ticketing is also available online at

Weather Cancellations
The Rose rarely cancels public performances. If severe weather requires a show to be cancelled, a notice will be placed on our website and on social media, and we will notify local media outlets. For weather-related inquiries, please contact the Box Office at (402) 345-4849. Should a show be cancelled, a recorded message will be left at this number.

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