Hello New Year!
What a way to end one year and begin another than with a wedding! In 2021, we played in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, Florida, and Alabama. Our most popular ensemble was the string quartet with our most booked instrument being the violin. We played more mountain weddings in comparison to beach weddings, and the most-booked city was Charlotte, NC. Not only did we play numerous weddings throughout 2021, but we also played corporate events, vow renewals, cocktail hours, receptions, brunches, fundraisers, funerals, charity events, wedding shows, church services, private parties, rehearsal dinners, welcome parties, and birthday parties. We are looking forward to all the weddings and events along with the vendors and couples we will have the privilege of working with in 2022. We are so excited to see what this year holds.
The following wedding at the Old Cigar Warehouse in Greenville, NC was one of our last weddings of the year that we had the privilege to play for on New Year's Eve before heading into 2022. Our musicians were able to create breathtaking moments for the bride and groom's ceremony on their wedding day. After countless hours of preparation, music selection, practice, and arranging, we provided this bride and groom with a beautiful, fun, and personalized instrumental performance that we brought to life.
Planning & Preparation
When we first met our couple, inquiring about hiring us for their wedding, we set up a phone call and spoke to the bride about all the details that the couple had envisioned for their wedding day. The bride told us that she wanted a lot of music by Taylor Swift, a Schitt's Creek remake of the Tina Turner classic Simply The Best, and that she wanted to walk down the aisle to a specific Jason Walker cover of Kiss Me. We could imagine her vision coming to life for her wedding day at the Old Cigar Warehouse in Greenville South Carolina as she spoke about her plan to walk down the beautiful staircase at the venue to create a dramatic bridal entrance. At the end of our call, it was time to do some research to take a few days to listen to the songs that stood out as the bride's favorites and research the sheet music before communicating with her an outlined plan. After more phone calls and emails with our bride, we decided that two strings with a keyboard would be the best combination to see her vision to fruition.
We were happy to learn five Taylor Swift songs for her wedding which included, Willow, Champagne Problems, Peace, Cardigan, and New Year's Day. With these five songs not being played as frequently as others, we began to listen to them on repeat weeks before the wedding! It's much easier to learn songs by ear than actually reading the music oftentimes. Communicating songs and the covers of the original is perfected by listening to the original recordings and how we envision it sounding instead of sticking too closely to the sheet music. The accompanying musicians of the ensemble listened extensively as well, and the songs came together beautifully. The bride's request of the Schitt's Creek remake of Simply The Best, preformed by Noah Reid, was the sweetest cover to learn. We also played Holy by Justin Bieber and Royals by Lorde in the prelude, which we ended with Sunflower by Post Malone. One of the more notable songs in the prelude was Starboy by the Weekend which the bride really wanted because it was an inside joke with many of her friends from high school and college. The best part was that when we started playing it, about five different girls doubled over laughing. We were happy to know that we created a cover that they recognized!
Day Of The Wedding
When we arrived at the venue, we set up our sound and keyboard, we rehearsed, and we talked with the coordinator extensively about how we could communicate about song changes. The seating of the mothers and the bridal party procession was a song called Everything We Need from a Day to Remember. This was a very special song to the bride, and we had an arrangement of it commissioned for her wedding day. It was a moving moment. After this, the officiant asked everyone to stand, and we then proceeded to wait about five more seconds to let the commotion and noise dissipate before beginning the song, Kiss Me. It started with three single notes on the piano before the introduction began. The moment was magical as so many tears flowed, and you could feel the magnitude of the moment in the air. These are the moments that we live for. We listen, practice, rehearse, and arrange the music, all for that one moment to create an entrance that will never be forgotten.
As the bride took her last step down the aisle, we ended the last note of Kiss Me. Even the timing was perfect and was everything that we had hoped it to be. We were just so thrilled with how this wedding went! All the preparation, the importance of the moment, and the time taken to learn a lot of new music can lead to lots of nervous butterflies, but being able to see past those led to a very successful performance. We were so happy with what we achieved for this sweet bride and groom.
After the couple lit their unity candle, we played Tenerife Sea by Ed Sheeran and Love Me Like You Do by Ellie Goulding for the recessional and postlude. The bride and groom were so much fun as they had two of their best friends officiate their ceremony. Both the bride and groom love Stephen King novels and they even incorporated them into their vows which was an added personalized touch. The ceremony was filled with lots of laughs and funny stories, but it was also very personal for the couple.
Although we only played for about 60 minutes on their wedding day, the hours of preparation that had led up to this moment was so rewarding as everything came together. Congratulations to this sweet couple!
April is a professional violinist and the music coordinator for Dean's Duets.