“A pop star strips off his Pierrot outfit — a backward suit jacket and a tulle ruff — and sings “Heeeey” over and over.” - Helen Shaw for The New York Times
"The hilarious but poignant clip sees Rivera fighting his family’s attempts at “converting” him to heterosexuality.
'Every day came another story about the Trump Administration being anti-LGBT—and I thought, Wow they are really trying to erase us,” he explains. “But instead of getting angry, I decided to use the amazing lyrics of this song to say, “I’m not going anywhere. You can’t erase me when all I want is love. All we do as a community is love. And none of us are going anywhere because of your petty intolerance and hate.'
LOGO NewNowNext, April 2017
“The gay singer debunks conversion therapy and busts out of the closet in his new music video.” -Allison Tate, The Advocate
7 Ways to Resist This Week “... the accompanying video certainly sticks a middle finger at the intolerance perpetuated by the administration. In the clip, Rivera plays a youth undergoing "conversion" therapy, but don't worry, it's more hilarious than heavy.” -Editorial Board at The Advocate
THE ADVOCATE Magazine, April 2017
“On Nov. 30, revelers gathered to raise funds for Puerto Rico. Performer and visual artist José Rivera Jr., came onto the tiny stage at the back of the club and sang a mournful pop song while playing a guitar with his back to the audience. Rivera, who is of Puerto Rican descent, wore a white cotton kaftan and a black thong that he would later show when he took off his clothes and twisted on the stage floor.” - Isabella Caballero-Samper for Bedford + Bowery
"Through a video cover version of (Adele’s) song, José 'grapples with his feminine and masculine identities while reflecting on memories of a past lover.."
"...You have to check out this incredible rendition of “When We Were Young” by José Rivera Jr. It starts out with José and his band performing the song together, but then José takes us to the streets of NYC and totally crushes it with a team of dancers around him. It’s seriously straight out of a movie..."
José and Jonathan Capehart Speak on Panel “Race in Trump’s America” at NYU Washington DC.
All Things Considered host Jami Floyd spoke with Jose Rivera, a 24-year-old gay man of Puerto Rican and Italian descent, for some perspective on the tragedy. The dancer, choreographer and performance artist lives and works in New York City, and said, "They were my brothers, and my sisters, and it was incredibly disrupting to me. It put a fire under me that reminded me why I'm here."
WNYC/NPR 'All Things Considered' with host Jami Floyd
Gay men are being incarcerated and murdered by the masses in Chechnya. The Trum dministration continues o belittle all minorities with its absurdis media-politic, inciting violence and hate against the LGBTQIA+ communit and so many other. So many peopl, everywhere (America included), have to hide who they are to be accepted into the environment in which they reside.
“Somebody to Love” became about what, why and how can we as a community come together and realize that all we are doing is lovin, and giving our hearts so effortlessly to one another. here is a real absurdity to anyone who doesn't understand this, and so I decided to make fun of just how absurd that is.
Interview by Kaylin Kaupish for Quail Bell Magazine, May 2017
VIDEO OF THE DAY: Latinx musician and dancer José Rivera Jr. reclaimed Queen’s “Somebody to Love” as a queer resistance anthem. In the humorous video, he and a group of LGBT individuals break out of the gay conversion therapy program their families sent them to.
The Georgia Voice, May 2017
Jose Rivera, Jr. Refashions Queen’s ‘Somebody to Love’ as Queer Resistance Statement: WATCH“LGBTQ artist Jose Rivera Jr. has put forth a visual cover of Queen’s iconic “Somebody To Love” as a message of solidarity and resistance in the Trump era.”
"Freddie Mercury is one of the most loved gay performers of the 20th Century, but now one of his most famous songs has been given an LGBT+ makeover.
José Rivera Jr has reimagined Somebody To Love with a new visual, transforming it into a rousing queer anthem."
Gay Times Magazine, UK
"José Rivera Junior is one of many international guest speakers to the UNIT in Berlin this May. The New York performance artist and singer is also interested in the technical aspects of the performing arts and is an enthusiastic supporter of the gay-lesbian nerd collective who has made the world more one-horned." (Translated from German)
Interview with Torsten Schwick, Editor of Boner Magazine, Berlin DE
“Fantastic and highly entertaining new music video from José Rivera Jr.” - Mike Enders
YouTube Channel Feature Here
Guia Gay São Paulo, Brasil
José Rivera Jr. Creates Queer Resistance Anthem
Pride TV, Australia
"José Rivera Jr. proponuje hit Queen na nowy hymn LGBT."
Latinx singer, dancer and choreographer Jose Rivera Jr. has premiered his cover of Queen's "Somebody to Love" on LOGO's NewNowNext, claiming the song as a queer resistance anthem for the Trump era, a press release noted. ( The video also features nightlife personality Rify Royalty in the role of Rivera Jr.'s father. ) Rivera Jr. has also launched a funding campaign for his first visual EP, LQQK, The Way I Look, on Kickstarter. The video is at https://youtu.be/qFw4CMgMxI0.
Windy City Times
Twisted Male Mag, Germany
Check out Queen's “Somebody to Love” as a queer anthem for the resistance.
Boy Culture Blog
The video also features legendary nightlife personality Rify Royalty in the role of Rivera Jr.’s father.
"Quarry is known as both a groundbreaking theatrical work of music, movement, and image, and a portrayal of the rise of Nazism, rendered powerful by insidious shifts in tone over the course of the opera’s three movements....
This suite is so effective in large part because of the dancers’ command of Monk’s movement and music. Considering the many other successful dances in Glancing Back, Dancing Forward, the Department of Dance has ample reason to celebrate."
*José was the assistant to Paul Langland, restaging director of "The Rally" from Quarry
“It’s like that dream you had where you’re at your high school dance but it’s not your high school, your ex is there but it’s not really your ex, your mom’s in the corner…”
Bedford + Bowery
"The choreography of Spooner’s work for the New Museum was devised with and is performed by Holly Curran, Maja Ho, Emily McDaniel, Ashton Muniz, José Rivera, Jr., Maggie Segale, and Jennifer Tchiakpe."
"NYC-based Puerto Rican-American performing artist and choreographer José Rivera, Jr. has released a gorgeous, immersive video cover of Adele’s song 'When We Were Young,' directed by Blake Pruitt."
“[José says] I create accessible work in a digital, shareable format to inspire change and encourage conversation on how we perceive our physical selves. The response to my live work OF CAKE & VANITY (inspired directly by my dysmorphia) created a dialogue on mental health between friends, family, and me. Seeing live performance is a privilege."
BEST GAY NY
"See this NYC performance artist take on Adele’s latest hit."
"NYC based artist Jose Rivera Jr. truly shows his choreography talents and emotions in his latest cover of Adele’s “When We Were Young.” Rivera’s high pitched vocals make for an exceptional artist. "
"José Rivera Jr. is a director, choreographer, dancer, actor, multi media-performing artist, and knows how to deliver his message. His story, Of Cake & Vanity, is a deeply personal exploration of self...José is an absurdist, referring to his show as a 'Musical Painting.' Unusually accurate words."
STYLE NO CHASER
"When I met José Rivera, Jr., a queer performance artist, he had the same attitude towards sharing, and together we noticed a major lack of openness from many others. We discuss this, and how José’s work further explores these topics, in Episode 3 – Being Candid."