Welcome to the World
From the musical A Man of No Importance
© 2002 WB Music Corp., Pen and Perserverance, Hillsdale Music, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Music by: Stephen Flaherty
Lyrics by: Lynn Ahrens
Video recorded February 2014
About This Song
A Man of No Importance is a musical by one of my favorite theatrical composing teams, Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens. This music never did particularly well. I never saw the show itself, so I can’t speak to the quality of the script, but the score is one of the most beautiful and touching musical pieces I’ve heard in a long, long time.
It tells the story of a closeted gay man in Dublin who, when he’s not serving as the conductor on a bus, runs a small cast of players putting on a production of Oscar Wilde’s Salome. This song comes toward the end of the song when he’s been outed publicly and painfully, and has lost most of the things more important to him. He realizes that now he no longer has to hide who he is, he is now free to live his life for the first time ever.
For obvious reasons, this strikes a very deep chord with me.
The original cast recording had the wonderful Roger Rees playing Alfie. And as excellent of an actor as Mr. Rees is, singing is not his forte. For this arrangement, I kicked it up several keys and performed the vocals in more of a singing placement than the almost speak-sing version of the song from the original recording.