St. Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church

Our wedding on Saturday was one I will remember as one of my favorites.  It was a destination wedding for our couple, Malini and Justin. They chose the St. Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church as their wedding site and the Seaside String Quartet to provide the music for their wedding ceremony.  Lisa Radlovacki of Lisa London Weddings and Events was the wedding planner. We also saw our friends Nanette from Luminaire Foto and Steven from iheART Films.

It was my first time playing for a wedding of this denomination and my first time at this church. It was so beautiful inside! The ceremony was full of traditions and symbolism. And there was a lot of music! There was a choir to handle the sacred sections of the ceremony and a guitarist played a song for the Lighting of the Unity Candle. The Priest was amazing as he chanted throughout the 90 minute ceremony.

In the planning process, the couple had requested a song called Arms of Love by Kutless for the Bridal Procession. Unfortunately, I was unable to find the sheet music for it. Justin asked a friend to help and she was able to arrange the music for our string quartet. Justin asked that this be kept a secret from Malini. Thank you so much to the arranger, Anissa! It was a pleasure to meet you! Here is an excerpt:

We arrived at 2 pm and began playing prelude music at 2:30. The wedding was due to begin at 3 pm but the couple did warn me it would probably be delayed. The couple chose popular music to entertain the guests as they arrived at the church. Here was our prelude playlist chosen by the couple:

You’re Beautiful, James Blunt; A Thousand Years, Christina Perri; Brown Eyed Girl, Van Morrison; Baby I Love Your Way, Peter Frampton; I Dreamed a Dream from Les Miserables; Hallelujah, Jeff Buckley; Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You, Frankie Valli; Come Away With Me, Norah Jones; I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing, Aerosmith; Amazed, Lonestar; I’ll Stand By You, The Pretenders; You and Me, Lifehouse; For the Longest Time, Billy Joel; Rhythm of Love, Plain White T’s; Every Breath You Take, Sting; All of Me, John Legend; Just the Way You Are Amazing, Bruno Mars.

We began to play Bach’s Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring as the Entrance of the Groom’s Parents  began the Processional. They were followed by the Mother of the Bride and her escort. We continued to play this selection as the mothers went up to light the Unity Candle.

We changed to the Pachelbel Canon in D as Justin entered followed by his 10 Groomsmen, 8 Bridesmaids, 2 Ring Bearers and 3 Flower Girls. Malini entered to her song, Arms of Love. I wish I could have seen her face when she realized what we were playing. Anissa served in the choir and I saw a big smile on her face! I got goosebumps!

When the ceremony concluded with the presentation of the newly married couple, we played the traditional Wedding March. For postlude, we played Marry You by Bruno Mars and One Love by Bob Marley.

Congratulations, Malini and Justin! Best wishes always!



North Naples United Methodist Church

The Chapel at North Naples United Methodist Church really had a romantic atmosphere on this third Saturday in July.

North Naples United Methodist Church

The Seaside Strings Violin and Cello Duo was here for the wedding of Raechel and Trevor. The ceremony began at 5pm and we began to play prelude music twenty minutes prior to the ceremony. I really enjoyed working with Raechel and she chose very interesting music for us to play. The Pastor had no problem with her selecting all popular music for this church wedding.

For the prelude, we played I’m Yours; You Are the Best Thing; All of Me; I Won’t Give Up; All I Want is You; A Thousand Years; Marry Me; and The Way You Look Tonight.

Pastor Van Duser took his place at the altar and we began to play ” When You Say Nothing at All”. This was a special song for the Groom and his Mother. The Groomsmen entered from the back and took the side aisle to their places up front. The three Grandmothers were seated followed by the 2 Mothers. The Groom was now in place also.

For the Entrance of 6 Bridesmaids, a Ring Bearer and Flower Girl, we played “Making Memories of Us”. For the Bride’s Entrance, Raechel chose “Can’t Help Falling in Love”.  During the ceremony, the couple did the Tying of God’s Knot and we played “The Prayer” during this. For the Recessional we played “Lucky”and as the guests were departing, we played “Better Together”.

It was a wonderful ceremony and we were honored to be a part of it. Congratulations, Rachel and Trevor! It was a pleasure to meet you!

church wedding

Harvest Field Church, Fort Myers FL

Each wedding we are involved in is wonderfully different. Our wedding last weekend was especially unique- it was completely spoken in Portuguese!

Our Brazilian couple, Ieda and Christopher, originally planned an outdoor wedding. Just a month before their date, they changed to an indoor location, the Harvest Field Church in Fort Myers. What a good thing they did since the day turned out to be a very rainy one! The couple chose the Seaside Strings Violin and Cello duo  to provide the music for their wedding ceremony and we were booked for an hour and a half.

Harvest Field ChurchWe were warned by the couple that things would probably start late.  They told their guests the wedding would start at 6, hoping to start at 6:30. When we began prelude music at 6:15, a few guests had arrived. Ieda and Chris had a few requests and then left the rest of the selections up to me. Ieda loved the song “All I Ask of You” from Phantom and Chris requested 2 songs by Guns N Roses, “Patience” and ” November Rain”. At 7:15, we checked in with one of the groomsmen and were told they expected to start at 7:30.  Ieda had requested that we play Delibes Flower Duet just before the ceremony so we were able to fulfill that request.

We began to play Pachelbel’s Canon in D for the Entrance of the Pastor, Bible Boy and the Entrance of the Groom, Chris, with his Parents. The Bridesmaids , Groomsmen and a group of children entered to the Israel Kamakawiwo’ole version of “Over the Rainbow”. The last boy carried a sign ” Here Comes the Bride”. Ieda chose “A Thousand Years” for her entrance music.

The Pastor began to talk and unfortunately we were unable to understand since he spoke in Portuguese. But, it was neat to see little smiles flit over the faces of Ieda and Chris and in places everyone laughed.  When he concluded his remarks, Ieda and Chris gave me a signal and we began to play” Oceans ( Where Feet May Fail)” by Hillsong for the entrance of 2 young girls. One brought forward the rings and the other the wine and bread. At the conclusion of the wedding ceremony, the Pastor looked over at us to indicate it was time to play and we played “Marry You” as the Recessional. Nobody really exited, they went immediately into taking pictures. So I appreciated the help of the Pastor! A lot of guests remained in the sanctuary so we did as well (originally we were going to move to the reception hall). Chris had agreed to an hour overtime so we continued to play for about another 15 minutes while pictures were being taken and guests were mingling.

It was a pleasure to meet Ieda and Chris after all our phone calls and emails to each other. What a beautiful bride and a lovely couple. We wish them many years of happiness!

San Marco Catholic Church

San Marco Catholic Church is located on Marco Island, Florida. On this first Saturday in December,  it was the venue for the wedding ceremony of Stephanie and John. The couple chose the Seaside String Quartet to provide the music for their full mass and we worked closely with the music director, Nancy, and Father Tim who Officiated.

The lovely flowers were the work of Barbara at Focus Floral. Carrie Darling of Carrie Darling Events served as the wedding planner. Fidelis Films were the videographers.

San Marco Catholic Church

The ceremony was set for 2 pm so we began prelude music at 1:30. Here is the program. It was a lovely ceremony and we enjoyed accompanying Dorothy, Grandmother of the Groom, as she sang Panis Angelicus during Communion. We were honored to be a part of this special day! It was a pleasure to work with you, Stephanie and your Mom, Maria!

PRELUDE:    Handel, Le Rejouissance

                           Mouret, Rondeau

                           Handel, Entrance of the Queen of Sheba

                           Elgar, Salut d’Amour

                           Bach, Brandenburg Concerto #3

                           Bach, Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring

                            Selections from the Water Music Suite by Handel

                            Corelli, Menuetto


                        Bach, Arioso: Seating of 1 Grandmother

                                                                         3 Couples, Grandparents

                                                                        Groom’s Parents

                                                                         Mother of the Bride

                          Groom & Best Man enter from back

                         Entrance of Father Tim (no music); He welcomed everyone

                        Kenny G, Wedding Song: 

                                                       10 Bridesmaids/ Groomsmen

                                                        Junior Ring bearer

                       Pachelbel, Canon in D: Entrance of the Bride

                       Gluck, Dance of the Blessed Spirits:  Mothers light the unity candles

                       Blest Are Those Who Love You: Responsorial Psalm with Cantor

                      Celtic Alleluia: Gospel Acclamation; after 2nd reading with Cantor

                      Sager,The Prayer: Lighting of the Unity Candle (after vows & rings)

                      Handel, Air: Preparation of the Gifts

                      Mass parts with organ and Cantor: Holy, Holy, Holy; When We Eat This  

                                      Bread; Doxology/Amen; Lamb of God

                      Franck, Panis Angelicus: Communion (with voice, strings, piano)

                     Handel, Passacaile (strings only): Communion

                     Mendelssohn, Wedding March: Recessional

                     POSTLUDE: Mozart, Alleluia

              San Marco Catholic Church










St Agnes Catholic Church

St Agnes Catholic Church is the newest Catholic Church in the Naples area and boasts a large congregation.  Jill and Marvin from Chicago chose this lovely venue for their afternoon wedding ceremony on this Saturday in late October.  Lovely white orchids provided by the florists at the Ritz Carlton Resort adorned the sanctuary.

St Agnes Catholic ChurchI was here as part of the Seaside String Trio to provide the wedding ceremony music. I am playing viola along with Susan Sikuta on violin and Diane Coffman on cello. After speaking with Deacon Ed, the Officiate, and Maggie, the coordinator at the church, we were ready to begin prelude music. Guests were brought to the church by bus and they began to arrive thirty minutes prior to the ceremony. Kelly McWilliams  of Weddings by  Socialites handled all these details perfectly.

Selections for the prelude included Handel Air,Vivaldi Spring, Delibes Flower Duet, Haydn Divertimento in D, Bach Invention in F,  Bach Air, Handel La Rejouissance, Bach Arioso, and Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto #3.

With a signal from Maggie that all was ready to begin, we played Bach’s Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring for the Seating of the Parents and the Entrance of the Priest, the Groom, Marvin, and the Groomsmen. Once in place, we concluded that piece and began to play Pachelbel’s Canon in D for the Entrance of the Bridesmaids, Flower girls, Junior Bride and the Bride, Jill.

It was not a full mass so there was no music within the ceremony. As the couple was introduced, we played Trumpet Tune for the Recessional. As the guests departed and mingled for a bit, we played Handel’s Hornpipe and Mouret’s Rondeau.

As I was leaving I got to meet and congratulate Marvin and Jill. They both radiated such happiness and gave me a big hug.  I am so glad they were so pleased!  Jill told me the music was so special to her and she always dreamed of having strings play for her wedding. We were honored she and Marvin chose Seaside Strings!

We wish these newlyweds many years of happiness together!

Seventh Day Adventist Church, Fort Myers

We always love the opportunity to perform in a church and when it is also during the summer months we are doubly grateful! The wedding of Ariel and Michael was set in the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Fort Myers and the Seaside String Trio provided the wedding ceremony music. Musician’s Susan Sikuta on violin Rachel Cox on viola and Diane Coffman on cello provided the live music as I watched from the sidelines due to my recent wrist injury.

SDA Church 004

Ariel and her Mom, Jackie, worked together to choose the music for the ceremony.  I got to choose the music for the prelude and I chose all lively music for this celebration.Here is a portion of the Bach Brandenburg Concerto.

Other selections for the prelude were Handel’s Entrance of the Queen of Sheba, a Mozart trio, The Gift of Love and movements from Handel’s Water Music Suite.

The ceremony began with the Delibes Flower Duet.  Michael’s father was seated followed by the 2 mothers and then the entrance of the Officiate, Groom and Best Man. After coming to a nice ending, the musicians began to play to Purcell’s Rondeau for the Entrance of the Wedding Party. Three Bridesmaids entered followed by the Maid of Honor,the young man serving as Bible Bearer, 4 Flower Girls and the Junior Bride.  The doors closed to await the dramatic entrance of the Bride, Ariel.

As the music of Pachelbel’s Canon in D began, the back doors of the church reopened and Ariel and her Father made their way down the aisle. The music continued as Michael met his bride and they climbed to steps to the altar together.

Within the ceremony, Ariel chose the Gluck Minuet, also called Dance of the Blessed Spirits,  for the Lighting of the Unity Candle.After the pronouncement, the kiss and the introduction,  the music for the Recessional began.  Here is a video of that selection, Handel’s Allegro from a Sonata in F.

Congratulations to the newlyweds, Ariel and Michael! Thank you for having Seaside Strings a part of this very special day!