Diana Alvarez is Xicana singer/guitarist, poet, composer, and video/sound artist based in Northampton, MA. Her poetry chapbook, Consultations with Bruja Juana, was published by Toadlily Press (2009), and two of Diana’s poems appeared in The Best of Toadlily Press (2011).
Born in Corpus Christi, Texas, Diana began performing as a bilingual vocalist with a professional hotel and resort lounge band at an early age with the late Linda Flores, who was Diana’s music mentor for over two decades. With Flores, Diana worked as a studio vocalist and performed in a range of music genres, including traditional Mexican standards, jazz/Latin jazz standards, salsa, merengue, country, and pop. In 2000, Diana released a country music single, “Get Into the Pain,” produced by Linda Flores.
Diana is a first-generation-to-college student who earned her BA from Marist College and her MFA in Writing from Sarah Lawrence College. After completing her MFA, Diana worked as a higher education professional for six years as the Coordinator of Diversity Outreach/Multicultural Recruitment for both Hampshire College and Mount Holyoke College, where she recruited and created support mechanisms for students of color and international students at both institutions. Diana continues this educational focus on marginalized communities as a College Humanities instructor with Upward Bound Summer Academy/Greenfield Community College and through her doctoral research.
Currently, is a PhD candidate in Electronic Arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and her dissertation, Bridge Artistx: Women, Non-binary, and Genderqueer Artists of Color at the Forefront of Innovative Arts Practice, archives the work of artists Sharon Bridgforth, Magdalena Gomez, Vick Quezada, and Nicole Young through documentary video portraiture. Portraits of these artists, along with original music, poetry, and scripts by Diana will feature into her upcoming multimedia performance, Quiero Volver: A Xicanx Ritual Opera (Holyoke Community College, October 20, 2017).