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Monday, September 26, 2011

Client Thanks | Grand Rapids Wedding Music

Devon's work was fabulous. My now-husband and I wanted some very specific songs played for our wedding and were overjoyed what Devon was able and willing to learn them. Devon played the songs beautifully. In particular, we asked her to play a somewhat obscure song that we love for when I walked down the aisle. I have to say, it was my favorite part of the wedding to hear that song while I walked down the aisle.  We'd recommend Devon to anyone who is looking for a professional, reliable, and talented musician.

~Katy, Bride

September 3rd, 2011
Wedding at Fallasburg Park, Lowell, Michigan

Mackinaw Valley Vineyard ~ Harp & Violin Wedding Music

Situated midway between Peoria and Bloomington, Illinois, the Mackinaw Valley Vineyard is a popular Central Illinois wedding venue!  Doug & Crystal had a beautiful Friday evening ceremony at their outdoor gazebo.  They put their ceremony music high on their priority list, booked early, and had some amazing music selections!

The prelude and postlude included the harp & violin duets:
  • All I Ask of You from Phantom of the Opera
  • Autumn Leaves
  • Can You Feel the Love Tonight from The Lion King
  • Fly Me to the Moon (In Other Words)
  • In Dreams from Lord of the Rings: Breaking of the Fellowship
  • Misty
  • Music of the Night from Phantom of the Opera
  • My Funny Valentine
  • My Heart Will Go On from Titanic
  • Only Time
  • Part of Your World from The Little Mermaid
  • Someone to Watch Over Me from Oh, Kay!
  • Unchained Melody
  • Your Song

For the entrance of the bridal party, we played the "Theme" from Final Fantasy VII, and the bride's processional music was "Theme of Love" from Final Fantasy IV.  "Eyes on Me" (Final Fantasy VIII) played as the couple performed their signing ceremony, and the recessional was "Throne Room" from Star Wars Episode IV

Not necessarily music you might expect on the harp, but it was a lot of fun to put together, and the guests enjoyed it, too.  They even applauded the recessional, and a few couples stuck around to dance during the postlude - that was a first for me!

If you are planning a wedding at Mackinaw Valley Vineyard, or anywhere in the Bloomington & Peoria areas, please contact me about providing your wedding music!  Visit my website, Central Illinois Wedding Music, for details and more information.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Harp Concert ~ Southwest Michigan

Last Wednesday evening, I presented a solo harp concert at the Lincoln Township Library in Stevensville, Michigan.  I had given a concert there a few years ago, and was delighted to be back! 

The program included works by Bach, Handel, Godefroid, Weinzweig, Andres, Salzedo and Gustavson, along with folk songs and the popular songs "At Last," "In My Life," "Can You Feel the Love Tonight," and "Glitter in the Air."

After the performance, many members of the audience (including a fellow harpist!) stayed to ask questions and to get an up-close view of the harp.  I love to give recitals and presentations for organizations!  Please contact me about providing musical entertainment for your club, church, or community event.  You can visit my website, The Classic Harpist, or call 1-877-HARP-578 for details.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

West Lafayette Harpist ~ Wedding at Ross Camp

Samantha and Matt enjoyed a beautiful day for their outdoor wedding!  They set up a tent on the lawn at Ross Camp outside of West Lafayette, Indiana, and had their ceremony just outside of it in front of the pond.  Guests were able to just walk a few steps into the tent for the reception!

When we met a few weeks before the wedding, they had most of their music selected, but hearing it in person really made an impact!  They chose the Irish folk song "Down By the Salley Gardens" for the seating of families, followed by "Arioso" for the bridal party's entrance music.  The bride's processional was "Canon in D," and as the couple participated in the unity sand ceremony, I played the spiritual "Deep River." 

As the ceremony concluded, the newlyweds exited to "Fields of Gold" by Sting.  I continued to play an extended postlude as guests found their seats in the tent and the wedding party took formal pictures. 

The harp music selections for this ceremony were a nice variety!  You don't have to stick with just classical music; you can mix it up and include some of your favorite popular pieces along with the traditional wedding music.  If you'd like a harpist for your wedding, visit my website ~ West Lafayette Harpist ~ or call 1-877-HARP-578.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wedding Music in South Bend ~ Ceremony at Pine Creek Church of the Brethren

The most interesting part about this wedding for me was that the bride's mom and step-dad, who happened to be the officiant, were pleasantly surprised that the Bride picked harp music for the wedding.  The most comical part had to be some of the things that the flower girl decided to say!  During my wedding ceremony this past Saturday, the bride's daughter, who was the flower girl, insisted on asking the officiant, who was grandpa, if she could go to the bathroom now.  It definitely made the room laugh!

This ceremony was a mix of traditional and classical.  For the bridesmaids, I played Come Sail Away by Styx.  Going more traditional for her entrance, the bride selected Canon in D.  For the recessional, I played King William's March.

If you would like to learn more about having harp music for your South Bend Wedding, please visit our website, South Bend Wedding Music.

Harpist in Greenfield, IN ~ Wedding at the Garden Chapel

The Garden Chapel in Greenfield, Indiana is definitely a great location for a wedding ceremony.  This converted church specializes in weddings and is designed to fit perfectly for a wedding.  From acoustics, to lighting, to the amount of seating available, the ceremony was just right!

For Rana, her prelude and postlude music were more contemporary, but she was elected to stay the more traditional route for the wedding ceremony, with the exception of the recessional piece.  Before and after I included more modern hits such as From this Moment, I Swear, Thank You (by Dido), and Storybook Love from The Princess Bride.  During the processional, I went back to the traditional with Canon in D for the bridesmaids and Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride) for Rana.  However, the recessional selection was definitely more modern, as I played I'm Yours by Jason Mraz.

If you would like more information about having harp music at your Greenfield wedding, please visit our website, Central Indiana Wedding Music.

Kalamazoo Harpist ~ Wedding Music at Pine West

My wedding on September 3rd was an outdoor event where the weather seemed to be timed and located just perfectly!  When I arrived at Pine West, the sun was shining and the temperature was pleasant.  Just a few miles south, the weather was so bad that major college football games were being put on hold due to the lightning and thunderstorms!

For the wedding ceremony, the family was seated to Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring.  The bridal party had a rather long walk to make it to the gazebo as they entered to Canon in D.  The bride entered to the Bridal March. During the ceremony, I provided interlude music for the readings as well as during the sand ceremony.  The bride had chosen Hymne and Prelude in C for music during the ceremony.  The couple and the wedding party exited to Wedding March

If you would like more information about how we can provide music for your Kalamazoo wedding, please visit our website, Kalamazoo Wedding Music.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Iowa City Harpist ~ Wedding at Old Brick & Congregational UCC

I had such a wonderful time planning and playing for Courtney and Raven's wedding!  Their ceremony was held at the Congregational United Church of Christ, followed by the reception just a short walk away at Old Brick.  Both buildings are right on the University of Iowa campus, so I invited my dad to be my harp roadie for a day (he received his Master's degree in English here in the 1970's).  While I played for the ceremony, he tried (unsuccessfully) to break into his old dorm!  

The wedding had a Renaissance/gothic theme, and the colors were red and black.  For the seating of families, I played "Carolan's Welcome," a piece written by the Irish harper Turlough O'Carolan.  As the wedding party entered, the music changed to "Arioso" by J.S. Bach.  

When going over the ceremony logistics, Raven mentioned "We have two flower girls that are two and three years old and our ring bearer is going to be about one year old.  We are expecting all the joys that come with having little ones in the ceremony." Sure enough, as soon as the flower girls got down the aisle, they had to be led back up the side!  Courtney carried the ring bearer, and her processional was another well-known Bach piece, "Prelude in C."  Raven chose Pachelbel's "Canon in D" for her entrance music.

The couple wrote their own vows by adapting verses from the Bible.  My literary nerdiness loved the fact that they printed them in the program, and footnoted them in the program with the verse!  As they lit the unity candle and presented roses to their mothers, I played "Come My Way, My Truth, My Life" by Vaughan Williams.  The recessional, "Great Day," sent the newly married couple down the aisle with glissandos.  Very harp-y!

When the ceremony was over, I met up with my roadie to move everything down the street to Old Brick.  My dad remembered it when it was still the Presbyterian Church!  Now, the pews have been removed, and it is a unique and beautiful place to have a wedding reception.  With so many churches in the area, it is also quite convenient.  We got a few strange looks pushing the harp down the street, but we're used to that!  The red and black theme continued through the reception with linens, candles, favors, and the cake. 

Instead of a card box, they created a "Card Castle" to fit their theme.

During the cocktail hour, the couple requested that I play mostly popular music, and wanted to be sure I included some Green Day.  Guests love hearing songs they know played on the harp, and I often hear some humming along!  During dinner service, I switched to classical pieces, with an emphasis on Bach. 

I also played for the first dance, which was "Lovesong" by the English alternative rock band The Cure.  It sounds surprisingly good on the harp!  As I finished, the DJ took over, playing the same song, inviting the families to join the couple on the dance floor.

Planning a wedding in Iowa City?  I'd love to provide the music for your ceremony and reception!  Visit my website ~ Iowa Wedding Harpist ~ or call 1-877-HARP-578 to discuss the details.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Chicago Wedding Harpist ~ Harp Music for a Catholic Wedding

Ilse and Miguel had a beautiful wedding ceremony!  It took place at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Summit, Illinois (a southwest suburb of Chicago).  The sanctuary was overflowing with flowers, and they lined the aisle with large pink and white arrangements that sat on columns and were topped with candles.  They draped white fabric around the columns at the front to create a more intimate space (in the enormous sanctuary!) for the bride and groom.  

Prior to the wedding, all of my communication had been with the mother of the bride.  Since they weren't picky about the music selections, they left them up to me (within what is allowed by the Catholic church, of course!). 

The wedding Mass was conducted entirely in Spanish, so I was glad to have my translation to follow along and get the liturgical music in the right places.  Father Jose and I talked before the ceremony began to make sure we had all of the cues together, and everything went smoothly.

As the bridal party entered, followed by the families of the bride and groom, I played "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring."  The bridal processional was "Pavane Style Renaissance" by Wachs.  Music for the offertory was "Andiam mio tesoro," an anonymous Italian piece from the 16th century, and as the guests and bridal party shared the sign of the peace, I played "Hymne" by Vangelis. 

Schubert's "Ave Maria" accompanied the bride's presentation of flowers to the Blessed Mother.  As the newly married couple and their attendants exited the church, I played "King William's March."

The harp can provide for all of the music for your wedding Mass, and I can also accompany your cantor.  Visit my website, Chicago Wedding Harpist, for details, or call 1-877-HARP-578 for a customized quote for your wedding!

Monday, September 05, 2011

Grand Rapids Harpist ~ Wedding at Fallasburg Park

Katy & Jay made some unique and eclectic music choices for their ceremony.  There's no rule that says weddings have to be traditional!  The ceremony took place overlooking the river in Fallasburg Park in Lowell, Michigan (just East of Grand Rapids).  They provided a pop-up canopy for the harp, so that it wouldn't be affected by the sun or any rain that decided to appear.  Fortunately, the storms held off until later that night!

I always allow extra time to get to my weddings, which usually has me arriving quite early.  I read a lot of books!  This time, I also got to chat with the two 6- and 7-year-old ring bearers.  I told them how important their job was, because when they came in, it was my sign to switch to the music for the bride.  They were so excited to be a part of this wedding!

During the prelude, their requests included classical, folk, and popular music:
  • Clair de lune
  • At Last
  • Shine on Harvest Moon
  • Autumn Leaves
  • O Danny Boy
  • La paloma azul
  • Greensleeves
  • Scarborough Fair
  • Kum ba yah
  • Earth Angel
As the time got close to begin, the ring bearers ran up to tell me that they were going to go do their jobs now! 

The ceremony started as the judge performing the wedding (he is also a family friend) entered, followed by the parents of the bride & groom.  The bridesmaids, junior attendants, and ring bearers came down the aisle to "Smile" by Charlie Chaplin.  When the ring bearers were in place (they knew that was my cue!), the music changed to "'81" by the British harpist and singer Joanna Newsom.

They had three readings during the ceremony: "I Carry Your Heart with Me," "Litany," and "Where the Sidewalk Ends."  Following the readings was the lighting of the unity candle.  Instead of including their parents, they couple who introduced the bride and groom assisted, as I played "Beautiful Dreamer."  The recessional was "La Vie en Rose" by Louiguy.

In Grand Rapids and throughout West Central Michigan, I love to play the harp for weddings and parties!  Just visit my website, Grand Rapids Wedding Music, or call 1-877-HARP-578 to talk about including live harp music in your plans.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Foster Park Wedding ~ Harpist in Fort Wayne, Indiana

The Bridal Glen in Fort Wayne's Foster Park is a very popular location for weddings.  It is beautiful and secluded, so passing cars don't even know there is a wedding taking place!  The entire garden offers many backdrops for your photos as well.  Friday afternoon was hot and humid, but the gazebo provides enough shade to keep the harp (and harpist!) comfortable.

Megan was a very emotional bride - I love happy tears!  As her bridal party entered, I played "The Prayer" from Quest for Camelot.  The bride's entrance music was Enya's "Only Time."  There was supposed to be a moment of reflection following the second reading, but the officiant passed over it.  Instead, I played the piece ("Canon in D") for that time lightly in the background as the parents joined the couple at the front for a final blessing.  Quickly switching to the recessional music ("Fields of Gold" by Sting), the couple and their guests exited the ceremony.

Looking for wedding music in Fort Wayne?  Visit my website, Fort Wayne Harpist, for more information about having live harp music for your ceremony!

Friday, September 02, 2011

Harpist in Western Pennsylvania ~ Conneaut Lake Wedding Music

The Iroquois Boating and Fishing Club near Erie, Pennsylvania, provided a beautiful setting for my wedding on August 27, 2011.  With a picture perfect backdrop for the bride and groom, the setting couldn't have been any better.

In addition to the beautiful temperatures and great weather, the wedding also had a fair number of "web footed" guests!

For her wedding ceremony music, the bride mixed a bit of classical with modern as the bridesmaids came down the aisle to "Canon in D," while the Bride entered to "Only Time" by Enya.  During the ceremony, the bride and groom had a quick moment of reflection with their parents.  The background music provided for this time was "Erev Shel Shoshanim."  The recessional was "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring," which isn't played too often for this portion of the ceremony, but works quite well. 

As guests drank cocktails and mingled outside by the lake, I continued to play background music for the first hour of the reception.  When you have your ceremony and reception at the same venue, keeping the harp music going provides continuity, and allows your guests to enjoy it even more!

If you are looking for harp music for your wedding, please visit our website Western Pennsylvania Wedding Music.  We'd love to work with you, and make your wedding music memorable!