Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Jerry and Angel Tie the Knot

Not many people plan November weddings, but Jerry and Angel went about it right. It’s off-season for weddings, and that means the wedding services they chose were immediately available. They may have even received a discount for some of their wedding services—A good move in this economy.

Here at Lake Tahoe located in the Sierra Nevada mountain range, it’s chilly fall and the outside temps are not the most comfortable for either the guests or my Celtic harp. So, Jerry and Angel held their wedding indoors, where they and their 30 guests could have a lovely view of Lake Tahoe at Lakefront Wedding Chapel.

Getting married in a chapel does not mean that you are resigned to use their minister. Angel and Jerry brought in Pastor Alan, a Baptist minister, to officiate the ceremony. Everything from the lighting of a Unity Candle to Communion was included in a ceremony that lasted less than one hour!

Pastor Alan personalized the ceremony by including a very sweet story about how Angel and Jerry met online eleven years ago and were finally tying the knot. This moved their guests to both laughter and tears. Angel’s father, with tears in his eyes, started off the ceremony with a prayer. The mark of a great minister is one who will welcome adding material to a wedding ceremony to make it personal to the bride and groom.

Jerry was in charge of music selection, and he decided to mix modern popular love songs with traditional wedding music and Christian hymns. Here’s what I played (for more information on these songs, check out my repertoire list.

Pre-ceremony seating music:
1. “Everything I Do I Do It For You”
2. “Can You Feel the Love Tonight”
3. “Unchained Melody”
4. “When I Fall In Love”
5. “Take My Breath Away”
6. “When You Believe”

Mother’s Lighting the Unity Candle: “Blest Are They”
Wedding Party of 1 Bridesmaid, 1 Flower Girl, and 1 Ring Bearer: “Canon in D”
Bride’s Entrance: “Here Comes the Bride”
After Angel’s father’s prayer: “Here I Am Lord”
Played softly behind vows: “All I Ask of You”
While Angel and Jerry light their Unity Candle: Kenny G’s “Wedding Song”
During Communion: “The Love I Found in You”
Recessional: Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March”

Post ceremony music, while people exited for photos outside:
1. “I Will Always Love You”
2. “From This Moment On”

The look was classic, with Angel’s color selection of silver, light blue, and black (I wore silver silk and black velvet to match the wedding party).

A lovely, one-hour chapel ceremony can be beautiful, affordable, and personalized, right down to the choice of music, vows, and colors.

Tips to Brides:

June is the most popular wedding month, and in many locations, summer is the biggest wedding season. Save money by choosing an off-season wedding date. Even consider a weekday over a weekend date. You’ll have an open choice of available wedding vendors, and you might even receive discounts.

Tips to Musicians:

Only the Pre-Ceremony and Post-Ceremony tunes listed above were played in their entirety. The others were shortened. I needed to watch when the mothers were lighting the candles and wind down “Blest Are They” when they went to their seats. I needed to see when the last attendant in the wedding party arrived at the altar so that I knew when to wind down “Canon in D” and start playing “Here Comes the Bride”. Using your eyes, as well as your ears, is an important skill to develop when performing at weddings. Look up from your sheet music from time to time so that you don’t miss all the action.

Many more tips are available from my book “The Musician’s Guide to Brides” available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, and of course, at my website at Celtic Harp Music by Anne Roos.

Jump in and add your comments. Please share your stories and feedback...I’ll continue this blog with another event story next week.

Anne :-)

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