Dear Wheatley Wildcats and Other Interested Persons,
Welcome to The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 119.
According to Substack, in the first 25 hours after publication, Newsletter # 118 was viewed 3,506 times, was “liked” 20 times, and received seven comments (all positive). In all, 4,657 email addresses received # 118. In August as a whole, the Newsletter garnered 4,244 “reads” (not bad considering that, as you may remember, I did not publish at all in August).
Thanks to our fabulous Webmaster, Keith Aufhauser (Class of 1963), you can regale yourself with the first 118 Newsletters (and much other Wheatley data and arcana) at
Also, thanks to Keith is our search engine, prominently displayed on our home page: type in a word or phrase and, wow!, you’ll find every place it exists in all previous Newsletters and other on-site material. I use it all the time; it works!
I edit all submissions, even material in quotes, for clarity and concision, without any indication thereof. I do not vouch for the accuracy of what people tell me.
We welcome any and all text and photos relevant to The Wheatley School, 11 Bacon Road, Old Westbury, NY 11568, and the people who administered, taught and/or studied there. Art Engoron, Class of 1967
The exciting California New Music Festival will take place this coming November, 2023. Gustavo Dudamel, Esa-Pekka Salonen and other conductors are sponsoring it. These are orchestral concerts.
The renowned Baroque Chamber Orchestra ALBANY CONSORT, under the baton of Jonathan Salzedo, has been invited to participate.
Conductor Salzedo has commissioned Sheli Nan to compose a three-movement suite for the orchestra, which uses Baroque instruments exclusively, including Harpsichord, Organ, Recorders, Gamba, Violone, and Strings. This is the only Baroque orchestra in the huge festival. We hope you can join us.
The ALBANY CONSORT will present “Celebrating Julie Elizabeth Jeannin ” in three performances:
Tuesday, November 7, 12:30pm, a part of San Francisco Noontime Concerts. Old Saint Mary's, 660 California Street, San Francisco
Friday, November 10, 7:30pm, Danville Village Theater 233 Front Street, Danville CA
Monday, November 13, 7:30pm, Palo Alto Women’s Club, 475 Homer Street, Palo Alto, CA
Sheli Nan: Suite for Julie Elizabeth.
Sheli Nan is the composer of these works and finds herself in illustrious company!.
Here is the program:
Sheli Nan; Suite for Julie Elizabeth
J. S. Bach: Brandenburg Concerto #3.
G. F. Handel: Organ Concerto
For more information:
Composer Performer Teacher Author
The American Prize - Sheli Nan has won these awards numerous times for a variety of her work as a composer, librettist and author: i.e. - Opera, Art Song, Piano, Instrumental Chamber Music, Vocal Chamber Music, etc.
Writes Donna Harmelin Rivkin (1963) - “Wheatley had so many wonderful teachers! I have fond memories of Dr. Wills, our choir Director and my first voice teacher before I went to Juilliard. Miss Bodnar and Mrs. Meisel and Mr. Lineweaver were also wonderful! I can’t forget the fabulous Mr. Pagliaro!!! I feel blessed to have known them all.”
Writes Susan Obrant (1964) - “Madame Feindler was incredible. We read Saint-Exupery and spoke only French so that we learned to think in French. I could not translate a French menu - quel damage!”
Writes Jane Sherry (1971) - “Hi Art, I was happy to see/read about Mr. Signorelli! I’ve been wondering why no one has mentioned him before this. He was my violin teacher, from 3rd grade through senior year, for private lessons at home. He introduced me to the joys of classical music. Although I wasn’t very good, I did manage to sit in the 2nd section of violinists in the Wheatley orchestra.
I do fondly (forgive me here for this not really libelous comment as it’s about my own history) remember one early morning showing up to orchestra practice after a LONG night with my boyfriend during which we had taken orange sunshine or some other LSD popular at the time. Mr. Signorelli took one look at me, and the disappointment was very clear on his face. Of course, I don’t remember what he said while I was coming out of my vibratory state, but I was well chastised.
And yet, he always treated me with kindness and did not judge me for my Bohemian ways. He was a great man, and I’m so happy he led such a long and full life! He was one of the few great constants in my life.
Gotta go to the farmer’s market, where the only sunshine is the one above my head!
Warm Regards, Jane
Satya Center LLC
A Holistic Web Portal and Crystal Store
Alternative Health, Relationships, Global News
‘The knowledge of the heart is in no book and is not to be found in the mouth of any teacher, but grows out of you like the green seed from the dark earth.’ Carl Jung”
Writes Larry Rosenthal (1965) - “Art, I can stay silent on this burning issue no longer. I, too, took Chemistry with Mr. Rosenstein and Physics with Mr. Bongarzone, and while it was indeed Mr. Rosenstein whose grandmother was regularly referenced, my recollection of the quote is, "If my grandmother had had wheels, she might have been a trolley." The point being bludgeoned home was that a particular assertion made by a student or, more often, by someone in Mr. Rosenstein’s story, lacked relevance.
Student: Well if we just add 9.7 to the last two readings, the table balances.
Rosenstein: Well if my grandmother had had wheels, she might have been a trolley.
Writes Steven Krakauer (1972) - “Hi, Art, I, too, remember Messrs. Rosenstein's and Bongarzone's verbal antics. Mr. Rosenstein had lots of bon mots that classmate Bob McKay wrote in a little book. I think he told me at a reunion that he doesn't know if he still has it. One that I remember was at exam time (remember that we sat at lab tables, two per). ‘Pile your books between you, high, high, high. And this above all, to thine own eyes be true.’ I don't recall him ever using the 'wheels' line. But I do remember Mr. Bongarzone's version: ‘If, if, if! If your grandmother had wheels, you'd be a garbage truck!’ No doubt these things got created during their leisure time in the faculty lounge, or perhaps at the occasional Teacher's Conference. Cheers, Steve”
1967 - Art Engoron - Son Gets Engaged
Writes Art - On September 1, 2023, on Fire Island, my son got engaged to a wonderful woman, shortly after which this photo of Ian (L) and I (R) was taken.
1967 - Howard Senft - Wedding Day
Writes Howard - “That was my first wife, Rose Pearl; her two friends put the 1969 Woodstock Festival together. The gentleman on the right, Michael Nisenson, the Best Man, was my roommate when I was in private school in CT. He recently passed away from pancreatic cancer. Coincidentally, his cousin was Mike Mahler’s (1967) roommate in a halfway house!”
1967 - Dan Silver - Eleventh Grade Soft Shoe Routine With Jack Wolf
Writes Dan - “Arthur, Many thanks to classmate Linda Caterino for her favorable review of our 11th grade "soft shoe routine" that she found "definitely entertaining" (or is she slyly damning with faint praise?), and mostly for remembering it at all. Still, I must amend her recollection with the note that I'm pretty certain it was classmate Jack "the Garloo" Wolf and not classmate David Nathanson who shared the stage with me on that occasion; and that it was Mrs. Auerbach who so graciously (as she so often was) offered us a few minutes of her precious class time to perform. Now, I don't mind in the least being paired with David in any endeavor; it's just that Jack and I worked so hard to perfect that soft shoe, rehearsing the routine over and over to get it just right, so I wanted to make sure to give credit where credit is due for the "definitely entertaining" gambol. --Daniel”
1967 - Jill Simon Forte - Roosevelt Field Memories
Writes Jill - “Hi Art, Another lovely, nostalgic look back for me. As I looked at the article about Roosevelt Field, I definitely remember it being open air, and I still have a ring I bought in a store called “Jade East. That certainly brought me to the thoughts about my husband Bob Forte (1965) owning the music store Matthew Music (named after our son) all those years later, after the mall was enclosed. Anyone that may follow a certain type of music may know the name “Steve Via,” the great guitarist, who bought his first guitar there (he was so sweet thanking his mom for the purchase). We had many years and so many people and celebrities pass through those doors, it was wonderful. Bob is a fantastic guitarist, and our son Matthew followed in his dad’s footsteps, being an incredible guitarist as well.”
1967 - Jack Wolf - Essay
Growing Up In Segregation
Not the Jim Crow South - Alabama, Mississippi, lynchings and colored restrooms. But the progressive liberal New York, Long Island suburbs. I grew up in a solid liberal community that voted for Stevenson and JFK, high school class of 1967. We hosted a young black student in our high school who was shut out of school in Virginia because the local community refused to integrate.
Yet in a metropolitan area that was maybe 30% minority, we had not one African American or Puerto Rican in my school class of some 250. One Asian student.
This was not due to any overwhelming racist sentiment- we were fairly liberal, but a function of the housing segregation that defined the post war Northern big city suburbs. Some of that was likely originally racist, redlining, and housing covenants. Some of it was pure economic segregation which exists, perhaps even more so, to this day.
We scorned the horrible white supremacists in Selma and Montgomery and rightly so, but we never looked at the beam in our own eyes. We reveled in our being the academic superstars and having all the advantages of a school that was top notch academically and had AP calculus and sent students to the Ivies, but never considered that others lacked these privileges and were going to underfunded schools with high criminality and lower opportunities.
Our school was half Jewish, half Christian - a reflection of the immigrant history of the city - mostly liberal, intellectually rigorous, and that community always emphasized education, and we all just assumed college lay ahead as surely as marriage or a lawn to mow, especially given the alternative, Vietnam. But my good friend Frankie, who became my dear friend prior to his recent passing, grew up in Spanish Harlem, and for him Vietnam was an escape, not a disaster. I didn't know people like him other than the busboys at work or the domestic workers that took the bus out to the suburbs. While my friend Frankie was listening to what I would later come to consider the greatest music of my generation - Tito Puente, Hector Lavoe, El Gran Combo- I didn't know but the Beatles and Stones - good stuff to be sure, I still Can't Get No Satisfaction, but what I might have seen at the Palladium in the day when Cuban Pete and Millie burned up the dance floor and a young Bill Graham hung with the mambon-iks.
So, what is my lament? Well, segregation is a bad thing, not only for those in poor school, high crime neighborhoods, but for the suburban elites who don't learn the world as it is. These days it is largely economic segregation, as the house my parents bought for 21 thousand in 1954 with a GI loan is now sellable at 1.2 Million. Growing up this was just a normal middle class suburban neighborhood, a bit to the upper middle. I doubt that there is overt racism these days, and that black lawyers and doctors would not be denied a chance to live there, but at 1.2 Million there would be by default no working class or poor people moving in. And the zoning covenants that enshrine single family unattached homes in most of the school district make it very unlikely that anybody other than the upper middle and wealthy families will attend those schools.
My limited understanding is that Wheatley today is still one of the top public schools and that kids take their Kaplan's and go to Princeton and Harvard.. And the community likely still votes Democratic and sympathizes with progressive causes, but the children still grow up in a rarefied environment that little reflects the mix of people who live in the metropolitan area.
I moved out of Long Island after high school and I raised my children in North Carolina in a medium-sized town with one high school, so all children, poor, rich, black, white, went to school together. I don't know that NC is the paragon of integration, as much as that big cities tend to foster segregation, with poor inner cities and rich suburbs that maintain their exclusivity by zoning covenants that keep home values unaffordable to many. If you look at the top twenty metropolitan areas in the US in terms of racial segregation, you find in that most-segregated list, the largest cities, mostly but not all Northern such as Chicago, New York, Detroit, Milwaukie, Philadelphia, a few Southern - Atlanta, Birmingham ( Most to Least Segregated Cities | Othering & Belonging Institute (berkeley.edu)) . Curiously, there is less segregation in the West, and I think this is about the post war legacy.
I am not sure of the answer, but I think it has to do with integrating affordable housing into new developments, which may be difficult in places like NYC, where most everything is built up, but alternatively zoning laws could be abolished that keep communities economically segregated. This also fosters racial segregation due to disparities in wealth and income. I was never a fan of bussing, as it seems unnatural to be shipping kids around like commodities, but I am a believer that our neighborhoods should reflect the diversity of our population, and I would not want my children to grow up in suburban ghettos limited to the wealthy and successful.
1967 - Mary Ann Young Winiger - Still Missing - Contact Information Wanted
Here she is in “Aura” with a friend named “Koen.” “Aura” could be
Based on the photo and other information, I would guess Ethiopia.
1968 - Asoka Bandarage - Published Author
Writes Asoka - “Dear Art, I recently published a book: Crisis in Sri Lanka and the World: Colonial and Neoliberal Origins: Ecological and Collective Alternatives. https://www.degruyter.com/document/isbn/9783111203454/html?lang=en
Best Wishes, Asoka Bandarage, www.bandarage.com
Asoka lived with Karen (1969), Lisa (1970), and Peter (1971) Berley on Sherwood Lane.
1969 - Gerry Gersh - At the US Tennis Open With His Best Friend and his Best Friend’s Daughter
L-R - Gerry, Best Friend’s Daughter, Best Friend
1973 - Gerry Engoron - “Hi Art: Ellen Solow Holzman's memories of circa 1960s Roosevelt Field brought back some fond memories. I would like to add the following: Not only do I remember the ice skating rink, I remember they turned it into a miniature golf course during the spring/summer months. Also, directly opposite the entrance to the skating rink/mini golf, there was a large enclosed arcade with all types of pinball machines.
As for Woolworth’s, besides the photo booths, they were ‘famous’ for something else, at least by the time my class came around. At the lunch counter that Ellen mentioned, if you wanted an ice cream sundae, you got to pick from a wall of inflated balloons with a piece of paper inside. Written on that piece of paper was the amount you would pay for the sundae. The price ranged from 1 - 75 cents. It was a big day on lower Bengeyfield Drive when we got one for 22 cents!”
1973 + 1974 - Karen Lehrer (R) and Annie Clarke-Gerrity (L) - 50-Year Friendship
Writes Annie - “We were in Cape Cod celebrating 50 years of friendship♥️.”
1976 - DBOYSH PARTY AT RICK VOLPE’S HOUSE
Bottom row - L-R - Joe Potenza (76), Phyllis Fritz (78), Tom Fritz (76), Tom Romeo (76).
Back row l-R Tom Lonegan (76), Cheri Hahn Rice (76); Rick Volpe (76), Warren Kosel (76), Joyce Engel Rosenberg (74), Seth Rosenberg (76), Charlie Cassely (76) and Mike Cashin (76).
Faculty (Karen Bartscherer) - ❤️
1959 (Tracey Lanthier) - “Thanks again for the newsletters. I very much enjoy reading it.”
1960 (Janet Cohen Eder) - ❤️
1960 (Raymond C. Roller) - ❤️
1961 (Camille Napoli Cannizzo) - ❤️
1962 (Dick Glassman) - “The Class of 1962 is a diminishing lot, and seeing classmates from yesteryear in your column is fun. Thanks, Art!” ❤️
(1962) - Lois Kass Kleinberg - ❤️
1962 (Karen Strumpfler Tucker) - “I really didn't think you'd make it. Congrats on another great newsletter. Wonderful photos.” ❤️
1963 (Donna Harmelin Rivkin) - “Thank you so much, Art, for all you do to bring us all together! 💖🎶 Donna Rivkin” ❤️
1964 (Susan Obrant) - “I love reading the Newsletters.” ❤️
1964 (James Paley) - “Art, I enjoyed reading the Alumni newsletter, as usual. I don’t know how you do it.”
1965 (Jeffrey Orling) - “Art, Thanks for another delightful blast from the past. I love these articles about innocent times.”
1966 (Alison Kent Bermant) - ❤️
1967 (Scott Frishman) - “Art, Here I am in Calgary with my wife Linda at the end of a fabulous Canadian Rockies and Glacier National Park tour reading your Wheatley Newsletter. I think that says it all!!! As always, Scott”
1967 (Lynn Filippucci) - ❤️
1967 (Barbara Smith Stanisic) - “Thank you, Art, for your hard work.”
1968 (Asoka Bandarage) - “Thanks so much for the fabulous Wheatley Newsletters. You are doing a great service to keep the school spirit alive.”
1968 (Ricki Spier Cohn) - “I love the Newsletters! Keep them coming!”
1968 (Wendy Woods) - ❤️
1969 (Craig Backel) - ❤️
1970 (Cathy Gerson) - “Thank you so much for keeping the memories alive! We are so fortunate to have experienced Wheatley.”
1970 (Maria Giordano Gittleman) - ❤️
1971 (Larry Koenigsberg) - ❤️
1971 (Wayne Peiser) - “Art, As always, I enjoy the stories of the past, especially days at the Roosevelt Field Mall.”
1971 (Merrie Sesskin) - “Art, Welcome back. I always look forward to the Newsletters. Keith, thank you also!” ❤️
1971 (Jane Sherry) - “As always, thanks for the memories.”
1972 (Suellyn Karben) - ❤️
1974 (Nicole Pastarnack) - “Thank you so much, Art! My sister Amy (1967) and I are in Newsletter # 118. Awesome! And Jericho High School, from which Billy (1971) and I graduated, is rated Number One on Long Island!”
1975 (Alan Peterson) - “Keep these Newsletters coming. They're the only things to arrive in my mailbox to which I actually look forward.”
1976 (Mary Costello Willis) - ❤️
1976 (Robin Hegyi Sisskind) - ❤️
1977 (Peter Fitzpatrick) - ❤️
1977 (Jon Sternlieb) - ❤️
1979 (Amy Gould) - “Thanks, Art, I appreciate all you do!”
1980 (Nicholas Bisceglia - “Thanks for the newsletters; I love them!!” ❤️
1980 (Adam Goldstein) - ❤️
???? (D.M. Gately, a/k/a “Curious”) - ❤️
That’s it for The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 119. Please send me your autobiography before someone else sends me your obituary.
Arthur Fredericks Engoron, Class of 1967
© 2023 ARTHUR ENGORON