"It's Important for the Westchester Community"
Stanley Goldstein fell in love while sipping a scotch.
Not with this wife, Alice—that happened back in high school—but with classical music. As he describes it, years ago he was at a friend’s house and in the middle of a conversation, noticed some melodic noise in the background. He asked what kind of music they were listening to. “It was a Brandenberg Concerto,” Stanley recalls. “I don’t remember which one. But he gave me a three-minute tutorial on Bach and classical music.” He was hooked. “That led to my going to my first Friends of Music Concert.” And to this day, he keeps his car stocked with a few Bach CDs.
That infatuation happened 20 or 25 years ago. Soon after another friend from the Junior League told him about Friends of Music. Ever since, Stanley, a CPA and private-equity investor, has been a subscriber and a generous donor to Friends of Music. “It’s a great deal for the money and in an absolute sense: high-quality programming and wonderful groups. I’m happy to get season tickets because I know I’ll enjoy most of the works. I never pick a certain concert; I’ll take the whole bunch because I’m happy with the result most of the time.”
He likes the concerts so well that he always buys four season tickets so that he can invite business acquaintances and friends and make an evening of it—dinner and a concert. Over the years, he’s developed a list of favorite composers: Bach (of course), Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky. “Some modern guys—12-tone music—are not to my taste,” he concedes. But that hasn’t stopped him from trying to appreciate them.
If you’ve been a regular at FoM performances, you’ve probably seen Stanley: tall, slim, silver-haired, bespectacled, always mixing with friends before the concert and during intermissions. He has a ready laugh that’s pitched in the coloratura soprano range—always easy to discern—and a handshake that could crack a walnut.
Why support Friends of Music? “It’s important for my selfish interests—and for the Westchester community,” says Stanley. “It’s like synagogue: Even if you don’t go every week, you want to make sure it’s always there. Though I do attend most concerts.”
At age 82, Stanley still goes into New York City every weekday. And he still jogs on the weekends, often entering charity races. “My goal,” he has told me, “is not to be the last one crossing the finish line.”
When it comes to giving to Friends of Music, Stanley usually finishes first.