I Sing Because I’m Happy: Wedding of Irina Pevzner and Yun Hao Jiang


This weekend I had the privilege of officiating at the wedding of two musicians, a concert pianist and an opera singer.  Those attending included other singers and instrumentalists–even a prima ballerina.

The two families (parents and grandparents) were from China, Uruguay, Ukraine, Latvia, Belarus, America and Charleston, South Carolina.  We also brought together Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism and atheism.  The two other religions represented in this wedding ceremony were Music and, of course, Charleston.

 Included in the ceremony were a handful of quotations about music:

 “Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent”

Victor Hugo 

From the Old Testament (referring to the prophet Elisha):  II Kings 3: 14-15:  “When the minstrel played, the power of the Lord came upon him.

“People haven’t always been there for me but music always has.”

Taylor Swift

“If music be the food of love, play on,

Give me excess of it.”

William Shakespeare,

“Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness.”

Maya Angelou

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”

Aldous Huxley

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”


 “Let this be my epitaph:




Kurt Vonnegut


Categories: Faith/Spirituality, Family, Holiday, Quotations, South Carolina, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “I Sing Because I’m Happy: Wedding of Irina Pevzner and Yun Hao Jiang

  1. Great piece Marion. One my Jewish Perspectiver Sermons in a local Baptist Church was about how Joshua used Music to take Jericho.

  2. Ann A Quattlebaum

    Beautiful, Marion! Thank you for your open heart and your “open” ministry! Ann Quattlebaum

  3. One of my high school buddies raised some question about the picture, concerned that I was the groom marrying a young woman, or that my wife was the partner of the bride. The woman in the bride’s dress is the bride, Irina Pevzner. I never got a picture of the husband or the couple together. The other woman in the photo is my wife of 42 years, Sally. The groom is not pictured. Irina lived with us for a couple of years while working on her PHD in Piano Performance at USC. The groom is Yun Hao Jiang and I never got a picture of Irina and him together.

  4. “I sing because I’m happy” has always been one of my favorite songs ,!!!!! Did I ever show you that poem that I wrote hanging in the choir room?

  5. JEarl

    Music truly is the universal language. “How Can I Keep From Singing” is a bluegrass classic

  6. Steve Long

    Darlene Love sang the first line of “I Sing Because I’m Happy” during her acceptance speech for her Oscar last night. That was neat.

  7. Bill

    Sounds wonderful Marion and great photo–I’d know that cigar smoker anywhere–finally in mex–see you in several months

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