Humans of Hofstra: Carlos David Rivas
Lub-dub-lub-dub-lub-dub – the sound of Carlos David Rivas’ heartbeat dramatically echoes through his ears. He waits for the curtains to rise and for the spotlight to hit him. The moment has finally arrived; it’s showtime.
Rivas describes the moment before getting on stage as “being on the edge of a roller coaster waiting for the drop.” At an early age, he knew he was destined to perform on stage.
“I’m majoring in [drama] because I’ve always loved it. I’m not good at a lot [performing is one of the things] I am. I love dancing, I love acting, I love being able to create art that’s living and breathing,” he said. “I used to put on little shows and charge my grandparents a dollar to come see my shows. It’s just what I’ve always done.”
For a short period of time, Rivas lived in Keller, Texas with his mother. However, he decided the state wasn’t for him and described it as “boring.” He missed the fast-paced environment of New York, where he grew up, and the constant hustle and bustle of the cities.
“I came to Hofstra because my mom came here with her friend sometime back in the ‘90s. I used to be a Hofstra baby, so I felt like coming back home.”
Rivas is now a junior drama major and dance minor. He felt that Hofstra’s drama and dance program was one of the best in the state and would allow him to showcase his talent.
Moreover, he combines his love for theater to advocate and speak up on political issues. He believes it is his duty to use his platform to address various issues such as racism, transphobia, Islamophobia, homophobia and more.
“I love combining my activism with my arts so I do a lot of political theater,” Rivas said.
Unlike most performers, Rivas isn’t afraid of demonstrating his politics and getting criticized for it. He understands there may be a few members in the audience that disagree with his viewpoints. He tends to understand their different stance but disagrees when it involves hatred.
“If you aren’t thinking about politics, politics are thinking about you. Everyone thinks about arts so you just gotta combine the two.”
Rivas will be part of Hofstra’s “Pussy Riot” show, which will focus on campus issues. The show plans on teaming up with the Jefferson Has Gotta Go Campaign, which advocates for the removal of the Jefferson statue near the David and Sondra S. Mack Student Center.