One night at Pianists’ Club

Besides being an accomplished pianist, Ellen Jayne had a beautiful singing voice. Ellen Jayne was a longtime member of Pianists’ Club, even serving as its president for two years. Ellen had lost her husband Clyde the year before, so when she announced she would perform Schumann’s song cycle Frauenliebe und Leben (A Woman’s Loves and Life), the members were stunned because we knew the songs were about the happy and sad events in a married woman’s life. One song, in particular, dealt with the death of the husband.
But Ellen Jayne sang the song cycle beautifully, and was accompanied just as sensitively by Jeanne Clewell. How they were able not just to get through that moving music but to do it so well, when the rest of us were wiping our eyes and stifling sobs, is a testament to her love for Clyde and to her professionalism. She dedicated her performance to his memory on the first anniversary of his death. I’ll never forget that night.

Leave a Reply