Nude in New York

Jonisha Rios stars in a lively play

By Edward Flores
Published on LatinoLA: May 17, 2004

Nude in New York

Nude in New York is a one-person play based upon a Puerto Rican female?s migration from a small town in Connecticut to New York City. Written by and starring Jonisha Rios, this play does not highlight the glamour of big money, bright lights and exotic nightlife that one might expect from such a setting. Rather, this play colorfully exaggerates New York?s tolerant attitude towards expression of thoughts and emotions in public.

This one-person play is also somewhat unique in the respect that it also makes use of dance. Two women (Tanya Alexander, Delece Jones) join Rios for a few short, but well-choreographed, dance performances. Ranging from urban hip-hop to traditional folk music, these few dance performances introduce the play, generate an air of enthusiasm, and even forebode following events.

The pace of Nude in New York is almost manic near the beginning, with Rios vividly recalling her love for self-expression as a child and the heightened excitement of discovering life in the Big Apple. Those who enjoy themes involving one?s transition from a small town to a big city, or even the more general journey one undertakes in search of his/her personal identity, will be amused by Rios? keen insight into the lives of those characters surrounding and influencing her (all played by Rios), many of which are eccentric and few of which are alike. However, it is with this frantic pace that simple things become ignored in Rios? life, only to be revisited in detail as profound events unfold.

In the end, Rios? ability to narrate her life with intelligent observations makes this play not only funny but also compassionate. Like many other one person shows, this play is worth watching due to a talented actress? ability to play a wide range of characters (i.e. a loving grandmother, tactless men, demanding bosses, and radical feminists.)

?Nude in New York? will play three more showings at the Acme Comedy Theater in Los Angeles, May 18, 25, and 26 at 8pm. Tickets are $15 and reservations may be made by calling (818) 501-3429.

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