Diandra Rivera

Diandra Rivera is a critic with NY Theatre Guide. This account has been auto-generated, and does not indicate that this person is an active member of Show-Score.com. That said, if you "follow" this member, you will automatically be updated whenever s/he writes a new review.

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Reviews (90)
85
Diandra Reviews it All

“If there is one thing Sam Shepard enjoyed as a playwright, it is symbolism...Signature Theater’s revival of ‘Curse of The Starving Class’ is not only poignant; it is predictive...As a cast, you cannot beat 'Starving Class.' Each cast member emanates their frustration, sadness, boredom, and rage at having to find ways to survive a life they barely want to live...Kinney brilliantly presents Shepard’s script as an affront to capitalistic greed.” Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"What I love about 'Norma Jean Baker of Troy' is that it is a dividing piece...It is a LOT to dissect, and some audience members were not willing or wanting to try...While Whishaw’s performance is enthralling and Fleming’s legendary, operatic voice ricochets with gorgeousness, for some, it was the only thing keeping them through...I want my imagination sparked as much as I want my intelligence/ mindfulness to be expanded, and 'Norma Jeane Baker' of Troy did achieve this." Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"I loved that Greenberg and Director Margot Bordelon approached the difficulty of accepting that there are men who would NEVER see a woman as equal or due of civility. They represent our truth...As a female viewer, I found my discomfort and anger grow because such dynamics are everywhere, especially between oppressors and the oppressed." Full Review

95
Diandra Reviews it All

"One of the funniest, most poignant plays on race I have ever seen...It is an acting Olympics of which each actor makes themselves mesmerizing and memorable, especially because this is a play about disappointment...Webb’s direction turns 'Ain’t No Mo' into a high-octane, socio-political version of Saturday Night Live for theater lovers...'Ain’t No Mo' is exuberant and fabulously hilarious, but, like many comedies, it is based on human atrocities." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“’If Pretty Hurts Ugly Must Be a Muhfucka’ has some enlightening verses that strike you like nature itself...Legacy gives Massassi a crackling vulnerability that shuffles beneath her image as 'The Body.'...Sampson’s observance of human interaction is BRILLIANT because she pinpoints one extremely negative approach every person is guilty of: searching for others' flaws...This play is one about the human heart and how it got lost through things as superficial as skin...It is phenomenal!” Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Everything about this play, from cast to crew, enraptures you. The question is are you ready and open? For all that you may laugh, comedy is based on tragedy, and, nowadays, the tragedy of racism is still a prickly topic for people." Full Review

95
Diandra Reviews it All

"Powerfully written and directed by Idris Goodwin, 'Hype Man' has to be one of the best Off-Broadway plays I have seen...Each actor was exceptional...The majesty of 'Hype Man' is that, in 90 minutes, through music and a simple, DJ booth set, you feel clearer on why black lives matter and more should say it." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Proof that life is a comedy of tragedies. You have to laugh at its madness in order not to cry, and you also have to ponder at it so as to see its strange balance. With each song, the musical shows that life has a way of resetting its scales; as if every bumpy road leads to a smooth one. Hence, musically, every song flows into to other like an exuberant plot point...Every song is hilariously poignant, and backed by a phenomenal cast of actors/musicians that can do everything." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“A simple, lovely pleasure...In just 90 minutes, it makes you laugh, cry, and think about how you grieve...Full of sweetness and innocence. Anyanwu and Quinlan are so natural in their portrayals of these characters that you truly feel like you are witnessing the blossoming beginning and the tragic end of a young love...Nearly every scene, from the humorous to the mournful, makes death feel like an unwritten character...I am in love with this play...especially its writing.” Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

“'Sakina’s Restaurant' beautifully and hilariously observes what happens to individuals when they feel they do not have a land to call their own. This wise, impactful observation sneaks up on you in-between physical comedy and brief, moral myths. No matter what, Aasif Mandvi magically uses his time, presence, and the stage as evidence that his talent goes beyond smart laughs; it weaves tales with enlightening, human commentary.” Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"The show is an unstoppable testament to strong women realizing their power should not be taken by weaker men...This musical feels accessible and gives the crowd a chance to partake...By the end of its 90 minutes people knew hooks, harmonies, and choruses as if they had written the musical’s songs, which was oddly moving. There is no doubt that each member of this cast is planning and can head into bigger, broader musical venues." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“Felder deserves to be a one man show because no one can compete with his talent...He enraptures you...Felder uses his body and voice to transform into what feels like the millions of people that crossed Irving’s path to make him become one of the greatest songwriters that ever lived...While you will walk away from 'Hershey Felder As Irving Berlin' convinced this is the most talented man you have ever seen, the greatest accomplishment of Felder is showing Berlin was a good person." Full Review

75
Diandra Reviews it All

"DiLorenzo’s performance, in many ways, is a humbling lesson on how young women fall for manipulative, older men...'Beloved’s' words are real, quick-witted, and devastating. Katerina feels like a a living zombie; the vivacious corpse of a young woman that never had a shot at life. For however dynamic and enthralling DiLorenzo plays her, this character feels like she is dying in the 'humdrum' of what her life is supposed to be versus what is could be with Adam." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

"Many plays promised to tear my heart strings, but 'Innit' actually did...Brilliantly written, directed, and starred by Forde...In this world, the poor become jokes and symbols of human indignity, but 'Innit' is a play that reveals it is not easy to keep self-love and hope when you simply cannot afford to live...Forde is MAGNIFICENT...Although 'Innit' can be hilariously witty, its strength lies in its ability to show the everyday tragedy of economically 'getting by' but dreaming of stability." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Hodsoll tries to put a wall of southern hospitality to cover Laura’s human fragility. Through every changing story, you meet a new Laura Bush that is charming and interpersonal...This script was made for an actor, which is why Laura Bush cannot be played by just anyone...Hodsoll carries each monologue like an emotional seesaw...Allen, Vreeke, and Hodsoll have revealed that she is way more fascinating or, at least, secretive than you think." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Greg Mozzola’s Richard is everything Shakespeare would have wanted in actor for this role...Lew’s script is genius and can allude to so many themes that pertain to today; like our use of the needy to feel morally ascendant, while failing to actually see them as humans with emotional wants and needs...Perhaps 'Teenage Dick’s' greatest impact is that, even the audience, who Richard confided his evils to, is, ultimately, surprised when he, actually, commits them." Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"O’ Keefe gives Harold a quiet fragility that shows insecurities cut your charm. Harold seems destined for the lovely Edith, of which Fiordellisi gives her a feisty, comical nature. They are a ying and yang pair that Mee’s writing and Kim Weild’s direction artfully displays. There is a lot to love about the characters’ dynamic/ actors’ chemistry like, the political jabs, the quick-witted verbosity, or the tender fear they carry at knowing love for the FIRST time when they are elders." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Conceptually, I thought 'Exquisita Agonia' was brilliant...Cruz’s writing, along with Jose Zayas meticulous direction, make sure Lorenzo is the ghost that haunts everyone...Admittedly, the second act is A LOT. It is a heavy act that takes the noble curiosity of the first act and erupts it with familial pains and secrets...Yet, there are a lot of laughs and prompters of enlightening thoughts. Cruz’s words on love could move a rock to bleed." Full Review

95
Diandra Reviews it All

“One of the funniest shows in New York...A completely hilarious and delightful experience...Technically...a reading of five ‘hot and spicy new’ plays...This show approaches stereotypes in ways that make you drop your jaw in giggle and awkwardness, but the ‘stereotypes’ most barraged are those of theatre world...Each actor is fleshed in the madness of their persona...This cast was absolutely unbelievable, and ones I could watch in every comedy.” Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"From the minute Rashad enters the stage, you feel warmth for the peasant girl faithfully following the celestial voices of her head...On one hand, she is one of the most legendary warriors of all time, but, on the other, she seems stubborn and insane, but Sullivan’s direction shows that she could be both...You feel engulfed by the performers and the golden, scenic design of Scott Pask." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Raunchy, rowdy, rambunctious, and revealing...Feltface is one of the top comedians in Austrailia, and he is also a puppet. His bug eyes, purple, svelte skin, and chick-pea head lead to a gully of laughs, but also quiet prods of thought...This show's charm relies on its audience participation...A hilarious, subtle confrontation on the image you have yourself...Funny and poignant in showing how a broken 'man'/ puppet discovers that fame is public but happiness is private." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Both characters and actors, are electric together...Succeeds as a romantic play...Jackson gives the character such a noble, caring nature, and Lidloff's sparkling wit helps you understand why the two fall in love; they strengthen each other...I’d like to say that these lovebirds soar over social barriers and labels, but the reason 'Children of A Lesser God' succeeds as a romantic play is because it shows, sometimes, love is not enough." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

"A wondrous, hopeful and heartbreaking new play where imagination runs wild...Directed by Steve Zuckermann, 'Stone Witch' has to be one of the most impactful Off- Broadway plays premiering this season. Filled with wisdom...This tale shows that generational gaps are non-existent when it comes to creativity, and choosing to live according to it...Brisk, witty writing...Such a beautiful, riveting tale does not come often, especially with such concise delivery." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

"I never heard of Joe Carstairs, and that is a problem. A fabulous life like hers should not be so silenced in history...Legere makes Carstairs’ life worthy of Oscars...Legere truly delivers the essence of cabaret as an art form, and test of human being’s capacity to grab attention and transform it into amazement...Nothing stops Legere, but I was completely won over by her determination." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Wonderfully directed by Michael Raine, 'Locked Up B*tches' lives and thrives off of the fun of its cast. From the very beginning, they like each other and are here to give a good show. The perks of off-broadway is that you will have the most creative works and generous actors coming together to give a show that aims to leave a great memory; 'Locked Up B*tches does'....A funny, thoughtful play." Full Review

75
Diandra Reviews it All

“’Fruiting Bodies’ does pick up in its latter half as the pieces of its emotional puzzle begin to align. It becomes clearer in its messages and attempts to redeem characters that do not claim they want redemption while seeking it...Chanse’s writing is earthy and imaginative; trying to picture the inner pains we do not know how to express outwardly...’Fruiting Bodies’ succeeds in bringing forth a tale of self-reflection and growth; even if it is amongst a lot of mushroom talk.” Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“A true story and gruesome tale of fear, loss, ethnicide, and inhumanity...’Miracle In Rwanda’ is a must-see because it makes you re-analyze what is hope and bravery...This tale is brutal in context but regal in essence. As Maleika transforms her body...you are transfixed by the actress’ ability to become a completely different human being, but one that is connected in changing her character’s life forever...Its religious subtext is a driving force in amplifying that the human spirit is super... Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"As an actor, Saulo Garcia brings a level of warmth, compassion, and even smartness to his most deluded characters to, ultimately, spark self-analysis in viewers...At 90 minutes, 'I Am Latino' feels like someone put laughing gas into your day. It is such a quick burst of joy that encourages our community to both keep laughing at ourselves while demanding others take us seriously." Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"'Hatef**k' crackles and sizzles with passioned arguments over a sincere question: do POC’s have to sell out to earn big?...In some ways, the viewer is led to empathize with Imran, and how stuck he feels at having access to privilege only if he plays up every image and motivation sparked by imposing prejudices. Both actors make their characters fiery and intelligent...The couple bicker and blush in love and hate for themselves, each other, and the world." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"One of the freshest approaches to the daily injustices the LGBTQ must face...It is brisk in writing and direction...Jo Rupp’s performance reveals new layers to the ignorance and hate tethered to those that refuse to treat the LGBTQ community as equals...Though 'The Cake' is witty as hell, throwing in punch-lines and one-liners that sprinkle with random, colorful humor, it really is a tragedy...Both Angelson and Jo Rupp give endearing performances." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“'I LOOOOOOVED 'Bitter Greens.' I ate that show up...Written and starring Clea Decrane, I felt like I was watching the beginning of a star in acting and playwriting. Decrane is smart, nuanced, and aware of the spiritual murkiness that comes with being spoiled...Duplicitous motives, and deliciously devious plot twists turn this play about a group of people trying to live healthier into a soap opera on twenty-somethings that need to be better.” Full Review

95
Diandra Reviews it All

“'The Prom’ is everything we love about Broadway...Hilarious, powerful, poignant, silly, and happily cheesy...An empowering love story between two teens...Fabulously directed by Casey Nicholaw...It goes beyond defending and honoring LGBTQ’s right to love. It defends and dignifies love, itself. It is incredibly vivacious from music to performances...It is a surplus of hope, joy, and equality." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

“One of the most important plays of the season, especially for our current, violent times...’Eve’s Song’ is absolutely excellent because violence is often a dreaded discussion...When we blame the victims even after their death, it is because we did not see them as having a life. Yet, 'Eve’s Song' is about their life, and the gut-wrenching question of whether they were or could have been happy.” Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Beautifully directed by Davis and poignantly written by Backhaus, 'India Pale Ale' may present itself as a comedy but, in truth, it is a drama with a few laughs...While the first act of the play charms with legends of pirates and a langar/ Engagement Party that makes you adore the Batra family, Act Two leaves you in complete mourning, which is the point. You have to love someone to truly be saddened for their loss, and through elements of magical realism...Act Two pulses through your heart." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“Outlandishly funny direction by Sullivan and writing of Bean. ‘The Nap’ is 100% a comedy...There is a laundry list of characters that make you laugh at their madness...’The Nap’ is a total example that shows thrive on characters. You will walk away with a favorite, and a few one-liners you pray you will get to use in a conversation. Moreover, its live match of snooker is riveting; allowing the audience to really feel like they are watching a real sports event/fraud before their eyes.” Full Review

75
Diandra Reviews it All

“The play is tragic, dense, and, at times, perplexing. You want to cry from how many bad things are happening to everyone...Everybody in this play has a perfect reason to enter fetal position. Addiction, hand amputation, crashing careers...This is a lot to absorb as a viewer, but, in a way, that is Craig Lucas and director Tyne Rafaeli’s point...Trauma and misery fight to be each characters’ friend, which makes these exceptional actors go through an emotional Olympics.” Full Review

75
Diandra Reviews it All

"'Scraps' is not an easy watch, especially in these politicized times...It is fascinating to see how they themselves 'guilt' Forest for being 'there' at the wrong time, wrong place, and with the wrongly interpreted actions...There is humor spread throughout the darkness of this play. Jean-Baptise feels like 'the sage' of Scraps. The one-man, Greek Chorus that adds insightful and irreverent commentary to the character’s lives." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

“Incredibly funny and uncomfortable...I laughed, I cringed, and admired the creativity of Foley and Breslin. This show is everything you would not expect from a play based on ‘The Real Housewives’ because it is way more thoughtful. It is not trying to be gimmicky as much as genuinely funny and open to analysis. Yet, if you have never watched ‘The Real Housewives’ or do not know too much about the series ‘This American Wife’ might fall flat to you." Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"While 'God Save Queen Pam is for adults,' it appeals to that inner, teen girl...The twinkling, piano melodies add a brightness to script and heighten the delightful silliness of its puns...Quinlan gives this character such a warm amiability, and a bright-eyed optimism that counters well with the friendly, but stiff upper lips...'God Save Queen Pam' goes by quickly with brisk laughs, but is surprisingly more insightful than at first glance." Full Review

75
Diandra Reviews it All

“What most struck me about ‘The Maid’s Tragedy’ was how director Lucy Gram played this ancient play for its timeless message…It is not for every theater lover, especially because of the density and pacing of its language. Throughout history, 'The Maid’s Tragedy' has torn critics between absolute, blinding praise and complete confusion and indifference. It will do the same for its audience, but, at least, it has a strong cast of actors to make you bask in talent.” Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“A 55 minute, American Cop extravaganza that shines a light on the America’s obsession with flags, police, and looking really brawny while doing random things...Hilarious...particularly, because it latches onto humanity’s penchant for stereotyping...The comedic mirror America needs right now...done by 3 British guys...Their choreography to their sheer physicality and transforming into multiple characters was brilliant...’Police Cops’ has the virtues of wisdom and joy.” Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

“Did not disappoint, but, instead, raised the bar of thoughtfulness you would find in a drag show...Pace, plotted, and, despite some film glitches, perfectly allotted with visuals, I was super impressed...BenDeLaCreme was so precise, energetic, patience, and aware of her audience and message...The most moral drag show I have ever seen. Actually...the most moral shows I have seen...As heartfelt as it is humorous, but always honest.” Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"Elegant and whimsically romantic...leaving audience members mesmerized...'The Beast In The Jungle' is highly refined in presentation, but simple in its theme; either fall in love or fall back...Dvorenko and Yazbeck’s chemistry and Stroman’s choreography build an addicting, attractive love affair, but also an angering one because Marcher will not allow happiness for himself...Felt poignantly relevant to our times...A lesson on how joy is a choice of commitment." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

“Hilarious, thoughtful, and shows that being 13 is 100% a sentimental ride, but being a 13 year old girl can feel like an emotional odyssey...Barron’s writing is not only witty, but a confrontation of how society’s stapling of little girls as ‘too emotional’ or dismissing them as ‘feeling too much’...You will cry and you will laugh as you see a batch of 13 year old girls be so present in their heart and learn how to strengthen that presence.” Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"'Summer' has so many reasons for its success. First, its book plays as an aspirational musical...DeBose as 'Disco Donna', LaChanze as 'Diva Donna,' and Lever as 'Duckling Donna' give the legend such a warm hopefulness that their varying looks become one in their singular, 'Summer' personality...The second reason for the show's success as a musical, is, of course, the music...A sappy, starry musical." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

"One of the most surprisingly poignant plays I have seen...These actors' performances...each played their lines as if they were teaching morals lessons. They delivered their emotional words with the importance they deserved...A complete pleasure, but it is the type of play that relies 100% on its actors strength as an appeal...All vision comes from how the actors carry themselves and their words, of which the audience must invest in the moment...'Dress of Fire' asks you to listen and learn." Full Review

80
Diandra Reviews it All

"The most feminist musical, written by 4 guys, to hit off-off broadway...'Ms.Estrada' shines a light on feminism, and why so many men cannot seem to back the movement...Pennycook is a beacon of energy...Mahoney, Shin, Brown, McCaffery, St. Cyr serve roll on the floor laughs and deep, femme insight as Liz's friends, back-up revolutionaries, and fellow women showing how race, class, and individualism hinder and elevate a movement." Full Review

75
Diandra Reviews it All

"Worth a see. It is a quick, sprightly swim into the meaning of marriage, the oppressive nature of this institution, and the insurmountable pressure women are placed in to be superhuman mothers making up for absentee fathers. As Kowalchuk’s Hathaway cries, dreams, screams, and loves, you want to protect the soul of a woman you never met, but feel you know through the hearts of every modern woman balancing her ambitions versus stigmas that she should solely cater to wants of men." Full Review

85
Diandra Reviews it All

"Hodge as David is exceptional, and if not for his fantastically, raw performance 'Dogs of Rwanda' would not be an easy watch...Lewis gives Hodge a plentiful, vivid script that helps you understand why David, though a charming, friendly man, still feels like a wounded 16 year old...While 'Dogs of Rwanda' is a one-man show, Hodge is so vivacious and interpersonal that you feel God's Blessing is there telling him not to paint him as a Tutsi victim but an unwilling killer." Full Review

90
Diandra Reviews it All

"A sweet look into the ups and down of being human and making one...A play that gives hope in humanity...Your heart grows bigger and bigger for these characters because you understand them...Funny, kind, and plays like a living film...Oguma (Farthest Explorer) steals the show...Surprisingly 'Oprah-esque' in its desire to reach and elevate audience's hearts...A celebration of people's resilience to not simply fight against those that oppose them, but to love those that support them." Full Review