Obituary: American Composer & Educator Henry Mollicone Passes Away, Aged 76

By Logan Martell

On May 12, 2022, American composer and educator Henry Mollicone passed away following a long-term illness.

A graduate of the New England Conservatory, Mollicone was offered a position as assistant conductor with the New York City Opera and in 1975 became music assistant to Leonard Bernstein for the musical “1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.”

After moving to Los Angeles, Mollicone composed the one-act opera “The Face on the Barroom Floor” Central City Opera, where it has received numerous productions in the United States, The Netherlands, Germany, and the Edinburgh Festival. Other one-act operas composed during this time include “Starbird,” “Emperor Norton,” and “The Mask of Evil.”

Among his full-length operas are “Coyote Tales,” “Hotel Eden,” and “Gabriel’s Daughter,” in addition to numerous works for film, television, and ballet. He has held positions as Los Angeles Community College, Santa Clara University, Gavilan College, and Notre Dame de Namur University.

He was the founder and music director of The Winchester Orchestra of San Jose, music director of the South Valley Symphony, associate director of The Ernest Bloch Music Festival, and director of their composers’ symposium.