In our Care


Arlene M. Cole

05/26/1943 - 08/17/2022


Obituary For Arlene M. Cole

Arlene Toshiko Matsuoka Cole, 79, of Providence, Rhode Island, passed away on August 17, 2022. She was born in Camp Jerome, Arkansas on May 26, 1943, to the late James Matsuoka and Dassie Matsuoka nee Yasunaga. Arlene is survived by her husband Brian, her children Geraldine and Elliot, and her dog Leya. She also leaves behind her mother Dassie and her sisters Louise, Nancy, and Marilyn. Arlene grew up in Cleveland and attended the Cleveland Institute of Music. Following her graduation from the Eastman School of Music, she completed her graduate education at Yale. An accomplished concert pianist, chamber musician, and educator with the Brown Music Department for over 50 years, Arlene was passionate about teaching and mentoring her students and was beloved both for her guidance in the classroom and for her tireless organization of recitals and events outside the classroom. At Brown she taught rigorous advanced musicianship courses, music theory labs, and theory courses, providing a foundation for students to follow their musical ambitions. As Director of the Applied Music Keyboard Program, Arlene taught and managed individual keyboard lessons, organized visiting artist recitals and master classes, and oversaw the department's two annual student recitals, including The Arlene Cole Brunch Recital on Family Weekend which was renamed in her honor in 2021. Arlene was one of two Brown scholars invited to teach master classes at an international music symposium in China, and one of only ten pianists internationally invited to participate in the inaugural Cleveland Art Song Festival. Throughout her tenure at Brown, she performed many new works by Rhode Island composers and frequently collaborated with colleagues in recitals. In recognition of her work, Arlene retired in 2021 with the title Assistant Professor of the Practice of Music. She will be remembered and sorely missed by all she has touched over the years. Private services will be held at Family's Choice Cremation in Warren, RI. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to *The American Cancer Society* or to *Brown University, Music Department, Box 1924, Providence, RI 02912 with "Cole Piano Fund" in the memo line.* *For Photos Click the Link in the Bottom Green Box.

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  • 12/29/2022

    Hello Brian and family, My deepest sympathies to you and your family I have many positive memories of Arlene and her many visits to your home. Andrea Ridilla


  • 5 TREES

    5 Trees were planted in memory of Arlene M. Cole - September 19, 2022

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