LifeNotes: Ballet Maven Jane Fabian Passes

Jane Fabian

Jane Fabian

Jane Fabian, a key figure in the classical dance world in Nashville for more than 40 years, passed away on April 6 at age 74.

A Nashville native, Fabian was a founder of Nashville Ballet, was President of its Board in 1981-85 and then served as the Company Manager and Administrator of the School of Nashville Ballet. From 1993 to 2001, she was Managing Director of Nashville Ballet.

When she retired from the organization’s administrative leadership, she was appointed a lifetime member of its board of directors. Fabian was also quite active in the alumni association of Leadership Nashville.

Born in 1940, she attended Parmer School, Harpeth Hall and Hollins University before earning her degree from Vanderbilt in 1963. She began ballet training with Albertine Maxwell in Nashville in 1944. She later studied at the School of American Ballet in New York City.

She performed with the Nashville dance troupe Les Ballets Intime, then taught at both The Dancer’s Studio and the School of Nashville Ballet between 1976 and 1991.

In addition to her work with Nashville Ballet, Jane Miller Fabian served on the boards of the McNeilly Day Home, the Junior League, the YWCA, the Association for Nonprofit Organizations and the Tennessee Association of Dance. She was also on the Advisory Committee of the Governor’s School for the Arts.

She was a 1994 graduate of Leadership Nashville. In her leisure, the charmingly unpretentious Fabian was a big fan of The Atlanta Braves and of country music.

She is survived by sons Michael M. Fabian of Roswell, GA and Robert N. Fabian Jr. of Reno, NV. Her Nashville memorial service will be at St. George’s Episcopal Church, 4715 Harding Rd. at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 21.

In lieu of flowers, gifts in Jane Fabian’s honor may be made to Nashville Ballet.


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Robert K. Oermann is a longtime contributor to MusicRow. He is a respected music critic, author and historian.

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