ATLANTA (CelebrityAccess) — Jane Little, a double bassist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra died after collapsing on stage during a performance on Sunday. She was 87.
According to a statement by the symphony, Little collapsed during an encore performance of “There’s No Business Like Show Business.” Though emergency responders and a medically-trained chorus member briefly revived Little, she was transported to Crawford Long Emory Hospital where she later passed away.
Little, who held the record for playing in the same professional orchestra for the longest amount of time, started her career in 1945 as a founding member of the original Atlanta Youth Symphony Orchestra, the forerunner of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. She joined after two years of studying bass in high school and has since played under all four of the Orchestra's music directors, – Henry Sopkin, Robert Shaw, Yoel Levi and Robert Spano, as well as guest conductors including Igor Stravinsky, Aaron Copland, Pierre Monteux, Leopold Stokowski, Sir John Barbirolli and James Levine, among others.
An Atlanta native, Little attended the University of Georgia and studied for four years with the principal bass player of the Chicago Symphony. She was the principal bass with the Theater of the Stars Orchestra for 15 years, and played extensively with regional ballet and opera companies, as well as in touring performances of the American Ballet Theatre, Covent Garden Ballet, and Boris Goldovsky Opera Theatre.
“Jane Little was an inspiration for many reasons: she was a woman who succeeded in a role traditionally reserved for men; she was a person of modest stature who played the biggest instrument in the orchestra; she was tenacious, miraculously fighting off multiple health challenges to tag her world record; and she was passionate, doing what she loved until the very end of her life,” said Jennifer Barlament, Executive Director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
Little was predeceased by her husband Warren Little, a flautist with the symphony who died in 2002. They had no children.
Information about memorial services have not been announced. – Staff Writers