A Midsummer Night's Dream at North High

North High School's Junior Players will present William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, March 29, 30, and 31, in the school auditorium, 35 Polo Rd. Evening performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Please note that an additional matinee performance had been added on Saturday, March 31, at 2 p.m.

Shakespeare's comedy portrays the events surrounding the impending marriage of the Duke of Athens and the Queen of the Amazons. Interwoven are the adventures of four young Athenian lovers and a group of amateur actors. These unsuspecting lovers and actors are manipulated by the fairies who live in the nearby forest. Themes throughout the play include: love, time, and individual identity.

Jonathan Gellert, North High drama teacher, calls A Midsummer Night's Dream "in many ways the most ambitious production that Junior Players at North High has attempted in recent history." The production features 26 original songs/underscoring written by North High choral director Roger Ames and student composers Jacob and Alexander. It also features 38 costumes, originally designed and made in line with our concept. Sets were designed by Neil Saggerson, fine and performing arts department head.

"In this amazing play, Shakespeare shows how the irrational forces that surround us are always moving, always in flux, always playing havoc with our ability to stay in control and rational. With that idea in mind, the way time works in 'our dream'has been manipulated. The usual four days of the story has been expanded into four seasons. The play begins and ends in winter and all elements of our environmentally designed production reflect the cycle of a full year."

For tickets, please contact Mr. Gellert 441-4743 or at jgellert@greatneck.k12.ny.us.


South Middle Presents Disney's Beauty and the Beast

South Middle School will present the delightful musical, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, on Thursday, March 29, and Friday, March 30, at 7:30p.m.; and on Saturday, March 31, at 2 and 7 p.m. All performances will be in the school's auditorium, 349 Lakeville Road.

Belle, the "Beauty" of this classic story, encounters the "Beast"-really a handsome prince who has been transformed until he can show love for others. Belle finds much to appreciate in the Beast's hidden nature, as she is befriended by a clock, a teapot, and a candlestick, who all assume human-like characteristics in song and dance.

For ticket information, please contact Victoria Cimbalo, ticket manager, at 441-4600, or at vcimbalo@greatneck.k12.ny.us.


Geographic Bee Winner

A North Middle School eighth-grader is the winner of the school-level National Geographic Bee and will compete on the State level later this month. One winner from the State competition will advance to the national competition to be held in May in Washington, DC. To qualify for the State exam, August won the school's oral exam and achieved a qualifying score on the written exam component. The Bee involves all grades. Preliminary rounds are held in every social studies class, with the student who received the highest score in his/her class competing in the school-wide Bee. That winner then takes a written exam to qualify for the State-level Bee.

Commenting on his love of geography, August said: "Geography shows me the beautiful nature on Earth, man-made or natural. I also like to find information on diversity and different cultures. It motivates me to become more cultural and open-minded. The knowledge of geography is the best thing to have."

Ellen Bronheim, social studies chairperson, has been North Middle's Geographic Bee coordinator for over 20 years.

The Bee is organized by the National Geographic Society. The 2012 National Geographic Bee is sponsored by Google Inc.; at the state level, the Bee is also sponsored by Plum Creek.


Board Commends North High Students

Ninety-nine students North High School are recipients of Board of Education Certificates of Commendation for contributing to the quality of life at their school.


South Middle Teacher Named BOCES Education Partner

Brian Mannix, a South Middle School social studies teacher and technology staff developer, has been named one of 11 recipients of the sixth annual Nassau BOCES (Board of Cooperative Educational Services) Education Partner Award for 2012. The Award recognizes those whose impact on public education in Nassau County can be measured in a tangible way. The Award is open to everyone who is involved with, or is a supporter of, education, preschool through adult education. Nominees were judged by a committee of educators and community leaders based on the information provided in the nomination form. Education Partner recipients will be honored by Nassau BOCES at a gala ceremony in May.

Commenting on his recognition, Mr. Mannix said: "I am deeply honored to be among those who are receiving the Nassau BOCES Education Partner Award. With the high caliber of the past recipients and the remarkable achievements of those receiving the award this year, I can only be humbled to be recognized and say ?thank you? to be include in such fine company."

This year's other honorees include: Valerie Angelillo, principal, H. Frank Carey High School, Sewanhaka; Patricia Chow, vice chairperson, Chinese Center on Long Island Inc.; Francis De Mita, chairperson emeritus, Nassau Educators Federal Credit Union and retired assistant professor, CUNY; Dana Friedman, president, Early Years Institute; Katie Haug, teacher, Seaford Manor School; Patricia Lally, teacher aide, George W. Hewlett High School; Brian O?Flaherty, trustee, Board of Education, East Meadow; Vicki Payne, manager, corporate citizenship, Northrop-Grumman Corp., Military Aircraft Systems; Joe Satriano, trustee, Susan Satriano Foundation and author of In Sickness and in Health: A Memoir of Love; and John Theissen, executive director, John Theissen Children's Foundation.


Multicultural Events at JFK

John F. Kennedy School's annual Multicultural Teach-In, held in early March, was expanded to include dance performances by North High School students. During the Teach-In, parents assumed the role of teachers during the morning classes, making wonderful and interesting presentations about their native countries and ethnic cultures. In all, some 17 countries were represented. Students and teachers were able to vicariously experience some of the beauty and uniqueness of different world cultures through the parent presenters. In the afternoon, in the school auditorium, the elementary students were treated to engaging dance performances by members of North High School's Asian Culture Club and Multicultural Club. North students introduced each dance with an explanation of its meaning. Dances included: Las Cachiporras, from El Salvador; Laila O Laila, from India; and the Chinese Ribbon Dance and the Parasol Dance, from China. The event culminated with a lively question-and-answer session between the kindergarten through fifth-grade youngsters and the high school students.


April Day Trips with the Adult Program

The Great Neck Public Schools Adult Program offers dozens of fun-and-informative day trips. Two unique ones are described below--an in-depth look at the city of Newark, and a food and culture walking tour of Greenwich Village and SOHO. Trips by luxury coach, depart from and return to the Cumberland Adult Center, 30 Cumberland Ave., Lake Success. To register, or for more information, call the Adult Program at 441-4949 or go to www.greatneckadulted.org.

Newark: Museum & More

See Newark's new development, historic buildings, and sculpture. Visit Ahavas Sholom, a 100-year-old synagogue. Walk through Sacred Heart Cathedral Basilica. Ride through Branch Brook Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmstead (Central Park). See Newark's 4,000 flowering cherry trees--more than Washington, DC. The Adult Program has arranged a private tour of city's the oldest surviving house, built in 1712. It features a beautiful folk-art collection. Enjoy lunch in a charming Spanish-Portuguese restaurant. End the day with a visit to the Newark Museum, for a docent-led tour which will include Poetic Pastimes: Japan and the Art of Leisure. Our tour will also include the famed, authentic Tibetan Buddhist altar, consecrated by the 14th Dalai Lama. Throughout the day, we will be escorted by a professional guide. Helene Schachter leads this trip on Sunday, April 15. Depart 8:30a.m.; anticipated return 6 p.m. $115.

Greenwich Village & SOHO: Walking Tour

Enjoy a food-tasting ramble through two historic neighborhoods. Explore the central part of the Village, and then go into the old Italian section of SOHO. Discover a countercultural paradise once enjoyed by bohemians, beatniks, artists, and folk singers. There will be five tastings on the go and two tastings seated in restaurants. Harriet Becker leads this trip on Tuesday, April 24. Depart 9:30 a.m.; anticipated return 3:30 p.m. Fee: $109.


Feel Fit at the Adult Program

Spring has arrived. Time to increase activity and feel great. The Great Neck Public Schools Adult Program offers an extensive array of fitness classes, including Tai Chi, Qi Gong, Zumba, Nia, Pilates, yoga, aerobics, hand-weight training bellydance, Israeli dance, ballroom dance, swing dance, swimnastics, dance movement for those with Parkinson's, and seated classes for those with limited mobility. Enjoy the company of active adults. All levels and ages are welcome. Convenient hours (morning, afternoon, and evening) accommodate every schedule. All classes meet at the Cumberland Adult Center, 30 Cumberland Avenue, Lake Success, unless otherwise noted. To register or for more information, please call the Adult Program at 441-4949, or visit our Web site www.greatneckadulted.org for online registration and the complete online catalog. Descriptions of a few exercise classes follow.

Chair Yoga

This new course is designed for those who have difficulty getting up from or lying on the floor. Work on flexibility and strength, both sitting or standing, and various relaxation, meditation, visualization, and breathing techniques. Derive the mental and physical benefits and pleasures that come from practicing yoga. Instructor Irma Marcus has been a student of yoga for some 35 years. She has taught classes in the World Gyms, Syosset Health Club, NY Sports Clubs, North Shore Towers, and The Links in Roslyn.

Class meets 10 Mondays, April 16-June 25 (no class May 28), 10-11 a.m. Fee: $89 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $99 for nonresidents.

Part I: Safe & Effective Exercise

Get tips on taking care of your body from a physical therapist with over 30 years experience. Understand how your body works now and how to keep it working for years to come. Learn the precautions to take for each area of the body, as well as simple exercises that challenge your muscles to become stronger while protecting your joints. Learn how to improve strength, balance, flexibility, and endurance without expensive equipment. Each participant will receive Exercise & Physical Activity, the 120-page National Institute on Aging guide. Bring 2-lb. weights to class. Anthony Sarola, a practicing physical therapist and an adjunct professor in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at Touro College, is the instructor for Parts I and II (below). Part I meets five Thursdays, April 19-May 17, 3-4 p.m. Fee: $45 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $55 for nonresidents.

Part II: The Exercise Class

Enjoy a new exercise class based on the principles learned in Part I of this course. Put the rules of safe and effective exercise into practice as you improve strength, flexibility, balance, and endurance while being gentle on the joints. Use what you?ve learned in Part I to stay fit. Bring 2-lb. weights to class; wear comfortable clothing. Part I (above) is a pre-requisite for Part II. Both classes may be taken concurrently. Part II meets five Thursdays, April 19-May 17, 4:15-5:15p.m. Fee: $45 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $55 for nonresidents.

Nia: Joy of Movement

Nia teaches you how to be joyful, expressive, and alive in your body. It's ideal for all ages and fitness levels. Basic, easy-to-learn movement, adapted from dance, yoga, tai chi, and other disciplines, will be practiced barefoot to music. Nia promotes weight loss and maintenance, flexibility, mobility, agility, strength, and balance. Instructor Vivi Kraft has over 30 years of dancing experience. She is trained by the founders of the Nia technique and by other top, international Nia teacher trainers.

Class meet 11 Thursdays, April 19-June 28, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Cumberland. $85.


Zumba fuses Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow moves to create a one-of-a-kind fitness program that will blow you away. Achieve long-term benefits while experiencing an absolute blast in one exciting hour of calorie-burning, body-energizing, and inspiring fast and slow movements. Instructor Iris Roberts is a retired health and physical education instructor. She has been the manager of Jam Dance and Fitness Center since 1996. In addition, since 1999, she has taught dancercise, step, and dance, for the NYC Department of Education in the continuing education program. Four sections of Zumba are offered each week: 15 Mondays, April 16-July 30 (no class May 28), 4:30-5:30 p.m. Fee: $159 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $169 for nonresidents; OR 13 Wednesdays, April 18-July 25 (no class June 6, July 4), Noon-1 p.m. OR 4:30?5:30 p.m. Fee: $139 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $149 for nonresidents; OR 15 Thursdays, April 19-July 26, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Fee: $159 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $169 for nonresidents.

Mat Pilates

Mat Pilates, a new course, is a safe and fun way to get or stay in shape. It's good for back issues, will make you much more flexible and toned, and you'll lose inches, too. Focus on improving flexibility, strength, and body awareness. The mat method is a series of controlled movements performed on a flat surface. Proper movements and correct form will be emphasized. Bring your own mat. Instructor Lori Ettlinger Gross , a Great Neck resident, is a certified Equinox Pilates Mat instructor who has been practicing Pilates for 15 years. Class meets for 22 sessions (11 Tuesdays & 11 Thursdays), April 17-June 28, 7-8 p.m. North Middle School, 77 Polo Rd., Room 118. Fee: $165 for Great Neck and Manhasset residents; $175 for nonresidents (ball included in fee).