March 1, 1914 - February 12, 1989
Anna Gold was one of the original members of the Fellowship of Friends, having joined in October 1970. Her contribution to the Arts was profound, as she laid the foundation for the classical music education of not only the students to come but also the Teacher.
Born in Russia, Anna came from a musical family. Her father was a classical flautist, who performed in the Soviet orchestra. She was one of three girls, and her father’s vision was to teach his daughters music at a very early age, forming a renowned sister trio. Anna played the piano, while her other sisters played the violin and cello. The cellist would become Zara Nelsova, one of the world’s greatest performers (one of her friends, Pablo Casals, said she was the second best cellist in the world, after him). Anna and Zara performed the first classical concert for the Fellowship in the Oakland meeting hall.
Anna not only introduced students to Bach, Beethoven, Hayden, Mozart, Brahms, Mendelssohn and other classical geniuses, she also was a scholar of the Fourth Way. She opened her home in Berkeley for regular, as well as prospective, meetings. Whenever a prospective student called, she would make sure they were properly screened in the Fourth Way ideas before introducing them to the Fellowship. Her support continued past the initial meetings, as she guided many students in their work with her direct observations and jovial heart.
Anna later moved to Apollo, building one of the first private homes within the vicinity of the Fellowship property. From there, she continued to hold soirees and teach piano to students.
Robert particularly loved and admired Anna, who raised her two sons as a single mother, just as Robert’s mother had. He enjoyed evoking her wonderful laugh that tickled his heart as well. They both shared a love of small dogs, and one of her small dogs was very possessive of Anna. Whenever Robert would put his arm around Anna, that dog went into attack mode, growling, barking and baring teeth. This would cause both Anna and Robert to laugh at its antics since the dog’s “buttons” were easy to push.
Her devotion to the Fellowship, the Teacher, and her contribution to standards of excellence from the inception of the School’s history proved invaluable as it left its imprint on what would follow.
Students who have completed their task have shown us again and again that our work becomes more secure in death.