First Coffeehouse of Semester Garners Large Crowd

by NATALIE CRAIGContributor

Tuesday, Feb. 9, in the intimate space of the Jasper Hall lounge, students gathered for a night of the arts. A full house was present to watch friends and fellow students perform and show their creativity.

Students recited original poems and performed music at last week’s Coffeehouse. Natalie Craig/Courtesy

Coffeehouse is run and operated by two students, RJ Liberto and George Schlink. Both Liberto, a senior history major, and Schlink, a junior chemical engineering major, hosted and performed a few songs of their own during the event. It is their last semester organizing the event together and plan on passing the baton to other students.

Natalie Craig/Courtesy

The legacy they leave behind is one that has expanded and encouraged the variation of different types of performances. “Something that we’ve been promoting within Coffeehouse is more variety in the acts,” Schlink said. “More poetry, more stand up, we even had one kid play the bagpipes.”

Diversity was not lacking in Coffeehouse’s almost 3-hour long event. Ersan Mamudoski, a freshman clarinet player, was joined by Chris Lake on guitar for a jam duet of acoustic chords with a jazz flair. Ersan, a first time performer, later played a solo Turkish clarinet piece.

“It’s amazing. It’s one of the best things to do on campus, I encourage every student to participate in the gathering of Coffeehouse,” Lake, a sophomore Computer Engineering major and seasoned veteran of the performances, said.

Ukuleles, guitars, clarinet, keyboards and beat boxing were amongst the mediums used in the musical performances. However, musical acts were not the only thing brought to the table.

Many students that participate in Manhattan College’s resident improv group Scatterbomb brought some laughs to the event. Junior Will Lamparelli and sophomore Angela Benevenia performed original standup routines. Senior Carolyn Egan started off the night with her representation of “Lady Macbeth Doing Laundry,” a comedic monologue about scrubbing her king husband’s “soiled pantaloons.”

Original poems that were recited reflected student’s perspectives of life in college, and life in general. These poems about good times, loss and growth were straight from the hearts of the students here at Manhattan College. Junior Olivia Smith zealously recited a piece expressing how she really felt about college food.

Coffeehouse is a celebrated tradition at Manhattan College that occurs multiple times a semester. It encourages students of all interests and majors to use whatever medium they like to perform at the open mic event.

“Coffeehouse reminds me of why I love Manhattan College,” Erica Rebussini, a junior in the audience supporting her friends, said.

Although coffee and snacks were unfortunately unable to be provided during the event, the turnout reflected that people were not just there for the free cookies. The atmosphere was as warm and welcoming as a hot cup of joe anyway.