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!

 

Naples Bay Resort

 

Naples Bay Resort wedding

We had such fun being a part of Natalie and James’ wedding celebration! They decided on a beach themed wedding and I enjoyed working with them to find the perfect music.  The couple chose the Seaside Strings Quartet to provide the wedding ceremony music. We were surrounded by awesome vendors: No Worries Weddings, Eric Tharp All Request Entertainment( DJ), Darren Miles Photography and the staff at the Naples Bay Resort. Family friends , Barb and Ken, Officiated.

I met with the couple last October and we came up with a great playlist from our repertoire. For prelude we performed: All You Need is Love, Beach Boys Medley, Girl from Ipanema, Happy Together, In My Life, California Girls, Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You, Kokomo and Margaritaville. We had some Bob Marley on the list too but unfortunately did not get to it. With a signal from Paige of No Worries Weddings, we played ‘Here Comes the Sun’ for the Seating of the Groom’s Parents and the Entrance of the Wedding Party. Natalie made her Bridal Entrance with her Parents to the song’ God Only Knows’. Within the ceremony, the cousin of the groom, Johnathon, sang I’m Yours as we accompanied him. Wouldn’t It Be Nice was the Recessional.

We are so glad the threatening clouds did not bring rain. It was a lovely ceremony with the couple speaking their own vows. I enjoyed hearing the story of their meeting. With their strong love binding them, they will have a long happy life together. Congratulations Natalie and James!

Edison and Ford Winter Estates

It is October and wedding season is gearing up after a slow summer. Our first wedding this month was for the son of a good friend. Cathy is a violinist and music teacher who has played with us many times as a substitute. Her family is full of musicians so we knew we would be playing for music lovers. Our couple, Melissa and Christopher, chose the Edison Ford Winter Estates in Fort Myers, FL as the venue for their wedding ceremony and Cathy arranged for the Seaside Strings Quartet to provide the wedding ceremony music.

Although we are still in rainy season, it was a beautiful evening with no threat of rain. We appreciated being in the shade, under the famous Mysore Fig.

We played a mix of classical and contemporary music for the event. The selections for prelude were Entrance of the Queen of Sheba by Handel; Endless Love by Lionel Richie, Brandenburg Concerto #3 by Bach and I Have Dreamed from the King and I.

Before we knew it, everyone was ready to start the Processional. As we played the Canon in D by Pachelbel, the Grandmothers and Mothers were seated and the Wedding Party entered. Melissa entered to the Main Theme from the Forest Gump movie. The ceremony was officiated by Lori Meyer and after Christopher and Melissa kissed for the first time as husband and wife, we played Shut Up and Dance by Walk the Moon as the Recessional. What a fun song! ( I got to play the melody! ) Just the Way You Are Amazing by Bruno Mars was the postlude.

Several family members came to talk to us afterwards including the newlyweds. We concluded with Fly Moon to the Moon as everyone headed to the Paragon Flight Training Center at Page Field for the reception. We hope everyone enjoyed their evening!

 

Naples Beach Hotel

It was a breezy but beautiful March evening at the Naples Beach Hotel and Golf Club for the wedding of Sarah and Brent. The Groom’s family had been staying at this hotel in Naples, FL during season for years so it was the perfect place for the couple to have chosen for their wedding day! The Seaside String Quartet performed the music for their destination wedding ceremony and cocktail hour. Susan was our contact at the resort and a family friend, Greg, served as Officiant.

Naples Beach Hotel wedding

The Mother of the Groom, Susan, had made the arrangements with me. I was given freedom to choose most of the music. The couple chose the Bridal Procession music and the Recessional music.

We kept it classical for the prelude which began at 5 pm; Bach, Handel and selections from our baroque album. Guests were in place and the family was ready to be seated. We began to play Pachelbel Canon in D as the Parents were seated; the Officiate entered, the Groom, Best Man and the Maid of Honor took their places. Sarah made her entrance to Over the Rainbow. What a beautiful choice and we were able to time it perfectly! For the Sand Ceremony, we played The Prayer and the ceremony concluded with All You Need is Love.

We remained on the Ocean Lawn for the cocktail hour, 6- 7 pm. We played a mix of popular songs and classical. Here was the Playlist:

                 At Last, Etta James

                 Quartet in C, Allegro and Presto, by Mozart

                 Come Fly With Me, Sinatra

                Here Comes the Sun, Beatles

                 Por Una Cabeza Tango

                 Someone to Watch Over Me, Gershwin

                 Liebesfreud Waltz, Kreisler

                 Sway/ Cherry Pink Medley

                 Sleeping Beauty Waltz, Tchaikovsky

                That’s Amore

                 Tales from the Vienna Woods Waltz, Strauss

                 When I’m 64, Beatles

                 A Wink and a Smile, Harry Connick, Jr.

We received so many nice compliments and Susan came up and said how pleased she was. So glad to know they enjoyed our music! We were honored to be there! Congratulations Sarah and Brent!

                                   

Bonita Bay Club

On the fourth weekend in October, the Seaside String Quartet traveled to the Bonita Bay Club for the wedding of  Kerri and Scott. We provided the wedding ceremony and cocktail reception entertainment. The ceremony was held at the outside pergola. Everything look gorgeous!

Bonita Bay Club weddingWe shared the day with these vendors: Kehrin Hassan, of Jet Set Wed, Wedding Planner; Libby’s Flowers; IheART films; Binary Flips Photo; Niche  Event Rentals for the ceremony chairs; Kakes by Karen; Salon Tease; Darcy at the Country Club; and Michael DeArruda, Officiant.

We arrived at 4:30 to set up and began playing prelude music at 5pm. The couple chose mostly classical music for us to play: Ave Maria, Schubert; Meditation, Massenet; Con te Partiro, Bocelli; Invention in F, Bach; Allegro, Handel; Rondeau, Mouret; Brandenburg Concerto #3, Bach.

For the ceremony: Somewhere in Time:

                                                     Groom and his Parents

                                                     Mother of the Bride

                                                     Officiant 

                                                    6 Groomsmen enter from side

                                         Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring, Bach: 6 Bridesmaids

                                        Canon in D, Pachelbel: Entrance of the Bride

                                        I’m Yours, Jason Mraz: Recessional

                                        All You Need is Love, Beatles: Postlude

We moved to the terrace for the cocktail hour and enjoyed playing these selections, chosen by the couple,  for the guests:

                            Crazy Little Thing Called Love, Queen

                             One Love, Bob Marley

                             Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You, Frankie Valli

                             I’ll Stand By You, Pretenders

                             Lean on Me, Bill Withers

                             Love Story, Taylor Swift

                             Love Me Tender, Elvis

                             Strangers in the Night, Sinatra

                             For the Longest Time, Billy Joel

                            Brown Eyed Girl, Van Morrison

                            Marry You, Bruno Mars

                            Happy, Pharrell Williams

                            Every Little Thing She Does, Police

                            That’s Amore, Dean Martin ( such a fun arrangement!)

We got so many nice compliments and we are grateful! Thank you Kerri and Scott for having us! May you have many years of happiness together!

The Club at Renaissance

It was hard to believe you could have a totally rain free day in mid July in South Florida! I was so glad it was a beautiful evening for our destination wedding couple, Bob and Claudia. This  bride and groom from Washington D.C. chose the Club at Renaissance in Fort Myers, FL as the venue for their wedding celebration and the Seaside String Quartet provided the music for their ceremony and cocktail reception.

The Club at Renaissance

The Club at Renaissance

I handled most of the details with the groom, Bob, and he was great to work with!  Chris at the venue assisted us with the processional.  A family friend, Wesley, officiated the ceremony. As the guests were arriving , we entertained them with Con te Partiro, Por Una Cabeza Tango, The Prayer, Can’t Help Falling in Love, and Schubert’s Ave Maria.

We began the processional with Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring by Bach for the Entrance of the Officiate and Seating of the Mothers. Bob took his place beside the officiate after he escorted his mother to her seat.    The  7 Bridesmaids , Ring Bearer and 3 Flower Girls entered to Pachelbel’s Canon in D. The bride, Claudia, entered to the traditional Bridal Chorus.  During the ceremony, the couple shared wine as we played The Secret Wedding from Braveheart. The ceremony concluded with the traditional Wedding March,

For the cocktail reception, we played Beautiful Day; Brown Eyed Girl,; Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You; Clocks; Come Fly With Me; Don’t Stop Believin’; Every Little Thing She Does is Magic; Fly Me to the Moon; I Gotta Feeling; I’m Yours; One Love; That’s Amore and Stairway to Heaven.

Congratulations to the newlyweds!

 

Royal Poinciana Golf Club

It was our first wedding here at this Naples FL landmark and what a gorgeous venue! The Seaside String Quartet was chosen to perform for this outdoor ceremony as they were expecting nearly 200 guests. This was a destination wedding for the couple Jenna and Eli from Washington DC and we were booked a year in advance.

We shared the evening with these wedding professionals: Amanda Crowe of At Last Weddings, event coordinator; Signature Florals; Luminaire Foto, photographer; iheART Films, videographer; Artistic Science, lighting; Kakes by Karen; Hope Artistry, hair and makeup; Bash Booths, photobooth; Headliners Band; and Naples Transportation.

This was a Jewish wedding officiated By Rabbi Sharon Mars and set to begin at 7:30 pm. We began our prelude music at 7 pm and the couple chose all popular music to entertain their guests.

Royal Poinciana Club

I really loved their choices: And So It Goes (Billy Joel); At Last (Etta James); Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You (Frankie Valli); Clocks (Coldplay); Come Fly With Me (Sinatra); Everything I Do (Bryan Adams); Moondance (Van Morrison); When a Man Loves a Woman (Percy Sledge).

For the ceremony, Ode to Joy was played as the Rabbi, Groom, Groom’s Parents and Mother of the Bride entered. For the entrance of the Bridesmaids and Groomsmen, Vivaldi’s Spring was played. For the Entrance of the Bride, we played Pachelbel’s Canon in D. With the breaking of the glass, the guests shouted mazel tov and the wedding party exited to the song Everlasting Love (Love Affair).

We moved to the pool area for a shortened cocktail hour. Jenna and Eli picked more fun songs for us: Marry You (Bruno Mars); Born to Run (Bruce Springsteen); Firework (Katy Perry); Edge of Glory (Lady Gaga); Everything She Does is Magic (Police); Faithfully (Journey) , I Just Called to Say I Love You (Stevie Wonder), Just the Way You Are (Bruno Mars). I wish we  had time to play all the ones on their playlist.

What a very special evening it was! I wish many years of happiness for these newlyweds.

Royal Poinciana Club wedding ceremony