Pat Brown School founder, instructor dies at age of 81

JACKSON, Tenn. — One dance company is mourning the loss of their founder and instructor.

After moving to Jackson and opening her own studio, she touched the lives of many dance students in the city.

“Being away from the studio, probably. Not being able to teach other kids and stuff, that was so depressing to her. And being too weak to actually do it just devastated her,” said Scott Brown, the son of Pat Brown.

Pat Brown was a woman whose life was surrounded by the arts from teaching dance lessons to people in her neighborhood, to opening her own dance school.

“She was more about not really just teaching dance, she was more about trying to make good, young, strong adults. It wasn’t just dance, she held them accountable,” said Kim Turner, the daughter of Pat Brown.

Pat Brown founded and created the Pat Brown School of Dancing and co-founded ballet arts. She opened her school in 1964, teaching thousands of young, eager dancers in the Hub City the art of dance.

“For a lot of the kids, it was therapy of things that were going on at home or things that went on at school that day. They just got to release it, and she wanted everyone to be able to have that release and that love that she had for dance and the community,” said Turner said.

On December 2 in Nashville, Pat Brown died at the age of 81. She was surrounded by all five of her children.

“She pretty much left a piece of her in everybody she came across, and everybody she mentored, everybody she taught. So although you see the other person, and their character, and everything part of their character is Pat Brown,” Scott Brown said.

Brown was known for her beautiful and elegant productions, especially, very notably the annual local presentation of The Nutcracker.”

With the production being so close to the time of Brown’s death, her family says she would want the show to go on.

“She is watching every single move she can see, every pointed toe, and that they stay strong and get through it. I know it’s going to be really hard for them, and that’s partly why we put out the arrangements until they’re done with the show because the show must go on,” said Tamie Stanfield, the daughter of Pat Brown.

Visitation will be on Thursday, December 15 at Arrington Funeral Home from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Another visitation will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday with the funeral to follow at 1 p.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. In the evening there will be a celebration of life at the studio.

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