In June 1965 my sister graduated from The Philadelphia High School for Girls in Philadelphia. She was a member of the 206th graduating class. I was an 11-year old 6th grader at the time. My mother allowed me to take the morning off from school to attend my sister's graduation, which was held at The Academy of Music in Philadelphia. I think the precise date was June 18, 1965: the anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.
Girls High has achieved high academic standing. It was founded in 1848 and became an academic school in 1893. Its alumnae have compiled enviable records and have distinguished themselves in their chosen diverse fields. The noted attorney Gloria Allred is a Girls High graduate.
I can still remember that the Girls High orchestra, seated in the orchestra pit of the Academy, performed the second movement of Franz Schubert's Fifth Symphony as a processional, accompanying the graduates as they took their seats on stage. I found the ceremony very moving, especially the Schubert 5th, which I had never heard before. My sister purchased a recording of the symphony for me later that year, in November 1965: Bruno Walter conducting. Such were my musical tastes at age 11.
Among my sister's friends who also took their places on the Academy stage that day were Nedda Cohen Weiss, Marlene Krantz Kessler, Barbara Stein Abrams -- and Donna Cotzen. Donna Cotzen, M.D. is now a psychoanalyst who practices in Philadelphia. Do you think Donna Cotzen can remember the slow movement of the Schubert 5th?
Vincit qui se vincit