By Josh Hall
Performed and simultaneously conducted by the writer himself, Henry Mollicone’s The Face on the Barroom Floor was done alongside Southwestern’s musicians in the Richardson Performing Arts Center in a concert of Mollicone’s work. This story of a traveling man and a mysterious face painted on the floor of a bar starred vocalists Jasmine Jackson, education senior, Matt Berthot, M.A. music student, and Jeremiah Roberts, music senior. After only three days of rehearsal with Mollicone and one day of rehearsal for instrumentalists, the performance continued as a success.
Henry Mollicone is Southwestern’s current visiting Woodrow Wilson Scholar. He is a scholar invited to educate students in their area of study and profession, and was invited to perform a series of his pieces during his visit. His performance was titled “An evening with Henry Mollicone.” He performed four pieces, two of which included soloists Dylan Moore, music education and performance senior, and Carol Gardner business major and music minor senior.
Prior to the start of the main event, The Face on the Barroom Floor, Mollicone mentioned that he did not have very much time to work with the students. He announced a disclaimer about having only three days to rehearse with the vocalists and the musicians receiving the actual music only one day prior to the show. Although there was little preparation, some of the performers still carried a degree of confidence about their abilities after the show. “I don’t feel like I did great, but I did ok. I was a little mad about the disclaimer he gave. We didn’t care or mind too much,” said Jackson. Some of the other performers’ opinion slightly differed in comparison, including that of Mollicone’s. “It was really kind of scary, though I thought everybody really pulled together. I was happy,” said Mollicone. In conjunction with Mollicone’s opinion was Roberts, who was the baritone of the performance. “I feel very good now that it’s over because I was really nervous. We had a lot of rough spots during rehearsal,” said Roberts.
There were also slightly mixed feelings about working with Mollicone and his position as a professional musician. Jackson said “I felt pressured a little. I felt like I had to be up to par.” Roberts had a different approach to the subject at hand and a much more positive outlook. “He was awesome. He was very nice, and patient, and wise. It was an honor,” said Roberts.
Joshua Hall is majoring in communications. You may email him at josh,email@example.com