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Wentworth Earl Miller III

Wentworth Earl Miller III



Saturday, October 29, 2011

Wentworth Miller - The Makings of an Educated Englishman in NY.

The Miller family decided to move to Brooklyn, Park Slope, New York with their one year old bundle of joy, Wentworth.  A decision was made that Wentworth retain his dual citizenship.

It wasn’t long before Wentworth had two younger sisters to play with.  Their names are Gillian and Leigh.

(I often wonder to myself who was the first in his family to call him Went for short.  I probably would have called him Wentyworth or Wentywoo because that is what I affectionately call him.  I'll try to behave myself when writing my blogs and call him Went as he is known by his family and friends.)

Went’s first experience in acting was in kindergarten, when he played a dinosaur … he was the T-Rex of the show.   He says “We were supposed to cook up these costumes, and most kids came in with some kind of paper bag over their head, but my father went all out and made this huge T-Rex head out of paper mache …. And on the day of the play, when I came out on stage with this thing on my head, the audience just went crazy.”

(So this was the seed of love that was planted and that had influenced Went to pursue an acting career.)

Throughout his schooling Went continued to act in stage productions whenever his parents would allow it.

Went attended Midwood High School in Brooklyn, New York.  His father at the time worked as an assistant district attorney and his mom worked as a Special education teacher.  In an interview Went recalled “I was raised with a certain ethic.  If you’re going to do a job, do it well and no half-way measures….” “I remember my father saying one word to me as I would walk out to school every day:  ‘Increments.’  Every test, every quiz, every conversation with the teacher, it all added up to the final grade, which would affect where you went off to college and the rest of your life.  All those little bits and pieces added up to something larger.”

(What a wise man Went’s dad is, as it sure paid off big time for Went.)

According to sources Went’s first heart break was at Midwood High School.  It happened to him in the sixth grade.  He was expected to do a school assignment so he decided to talk about his family tree in class.  His girlfriend at the time didn’t realise that Went was mixed race (African-American, Jamaican, English, German, French, Dutch, Syrian and Lebanese) so when she found out she ignorantly said nasty things to him.  This was hurtful to him as it confused him over his racial identity.

(Such a pity that this incident happened to Went but things always work out.  After all, Went has had the last laugh, hasn't he?)

The Miller family were living in Prospect Park and Went recalls “We had all kinds of people.  You’re rubbing elbows with just about every race, creed, religion on the subway.”  Went’s parents were very concerned about the urban environment their children were growing up in, so they wisely chose to move to Sewickley, Pittsburgh before Went’s senior year.  Went has said that he was keen to experience a year in a suburban high school.  He said “The difference between Midwood with its multicultural students and Quaker Valley Senior High School in Leetsdale, Pennsylvania, just outside of Pittsburgh, were very different.”  “My school in Brooklyn had 3,000 kids.  It was, of course, overwhelming by sheer numbers but beautifully diverse.  Quaker Valley was only about 400 students, tops.  So my class rank shot up, which was great.  Sewickley was an entire town operating as a community, and I found that a very powerful and supportive kind of experience.”

When the Miller family were living in Sewickley, Went and his dad collaborated together and wrote a book "Sewickleyness" hence the authorship of “TwoWents Associates.”  The book poked fun at the Sewickley neighborhood in Pennsylvania and of course, the stodgy, rich, Sewickley-ites.  They had hoped their book would gently and humorously deflate stereotypes.

"Sewickleyness" included cartoons like "Garden Club Tea," which showed three upper crust Sewickley women carrying on a conversation with a neighbor to the northwest. The caption: "So my dear, I understand you live in Ambridge. Um, may I offer you a beer?"

Went said, "Some people found the book to be hilarious, others weren't so enthused."  He also said the project was rewarding to him because it let him spend quality time with his father.

(Now it’s obvious who Went gets his sense of humour from.  I bet they had quite a few laughs together while writing this book.)

While Went was at Quaker Valley his dad started developing LEEWS (legal essay exam writing system) which has helped so many anxious law students through the difficult process of studying for their law exams. 

After graduating from Quaker Valley, Went enrolled in Princeton University.

I'd like to end my blog with a song I like, it goes like this ......

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