Ceremony Music

Pages and pages can and already have been written about music for the wedding ceremony, but here are a few more thoughts at the beginning of the wedding season just in case you might want to rethink some options.

We want to state from the beginning of this blog that we are active supporters of the arts and of young artists. Additionally, we also want to state, very emphatically, music is an essential and foundational aspect of your wedding ceremony. So, with that said, regardless of your taste in music whether from classical church organ music to funky contemporary rap played by a DJ, please, please, and please, engage musicians or a DJ who is competent, adept, and skilled in his or her art form. These individuals need not be concert musicians, but please, seriously, reconsider the idea about having a niece, a nephew, a neighbor or a friend play the music at your wedding ceremony because it “would be nice for them to do it and gain the experience”. Please repeat after us and say: NO! NO! NO! It will not be nice, for that matter, it will be very painful if they are not skilled. Why you might ask are we being so emphatic? We have celebrated a lot of wedding ceremonies and we have listened to a lot of bad music and it is embarrassing, painful, dreadful, time-consuming, distracting and in some cases, simply ridiculous. We will say this over and over again: your guests will more than likely not remember any specific words said during your wedding ceremony, however, they will certainly remember the feelings they had from your wedding ceremony. They more than likely will not remember the words of your vows, but they will remember the tenderness and sensitivity you had for each other. Similarly, they will remember the music was awful if it was awful! Squeaky, loud, out of tune violins playing the processional music as you walk down the aisle is not music. Your wedding is not the place for the local music school students to gain experience. Your wedding is NOT an educational opportunity! So, for a few more dollars, please, do yourselves and everyone else a favor and hire competent musicians or a DJ who knows what they are doing and are skilled and proficient in the craft of their art form and medium.

A final note: some might be scratching heads about our placing instrumentalists and DJ’s side by side in relationship to music for your ceremony. Here is the deal from our perspective: DJ’s are “playing” electronics. Like all musicians timing, queuing, grace, ease, volume, appropriate choice, ability, discretion (as in, not being noticed or trying to be the center of attention) are essential elements in performance. Electronic music at a wedding ceremony is, trust me, more than “pushing” the button on the iPod at the right time. More will be said about music and your wedding ceremony at a later date, so stay “Tuned” – no kidding!

Charlie and Cheryl Cavalconte

http://www.weddingministersri.com

When Tragedy Befalls a Wedding.

This past weekend Lakeville Pavilion, a very popular wedding venue in Foxboro, MA, not far from Gillette Stadium home to the NE Patriots, where we have celebrated many weddings, had a massive fire during a wedding, destroying the venue, and subsequently the dreams and plans of many, many couples for this season and next. Our hearts go out to all who have been touched by this tragedy.

So, what would you do, if a tragedy like, death, fire, accident, sudden hospitalization, or something similar occurred to you or your family? As wedding officiants, we have unfortunately shared in a few of these tragic experiences and they are emotionally devastating to the couple and their families. Naturally, most people do not like to speak about these events, however we feel it worth noting.

First, and gratefully, the statics for these incidents occurring are very rare. Second, from our experience, these tragedies have been the opportunity for a couple and their families, to put their best foot forward. It did not matter whether the families were rich or poor, sophisticated and educated or not, across the board, the families stepped up to the plate and made the most sincere and genuine contribution to ease the pain, as best as they possibly could, during these sudden and tragic times. These are not the times to blame any one for anything. These are times for compassion and comfort, for understanding and sensitivity. These are the times for love to be the profound healing presence necessary in the life of the couple, the families and the guests. Each circumstance is different and is experienced differently by each person involved. We personally feel it is essential to come together and not to isolate; others want to be present and supportive to those hurt by these events. We believe people are good and want to be helpful. In these sad times, please, come together with family and close friends, some food, not too much wine, and have time together. Allow the pace to slow down to be together, to listen and consult with each other in order to make the best decisions given the circumstances. Please, forget past family resentments, they are useless. Breath. Let the silly, foolish and sometimes thoughtless things people say, in their feeble attempts to ease your pain, go. If you pray, invite your higher power into the situation. No one wishes a tragedy on anyone, least of all a bridal couple days or hours before or after their wedding, however, if unfortunately the moment arises, watch how the power, spirit and sensitivity of love, healing and compassion rises from the hearts of good men, women and children, who care, love and are instruments of peace.

Charlie and Cheryl Cavalconte

http://www.weddingministersri.com

 

Who is walking you down the aisle?

This is easily one of the most hotly contested subjects at the wedding rehearsal and later after the ceremony. Almost every person who has thought about getting married somehow sees him or herself walking down the aisle one way or the other. But how?

Our blog for today will consider the more traditional wedding. More often than not the male groomsmen, with the groom (Partner A), enters the ceremony site somewhat unceremoniously from the side and stands at the top of the aisle at the ceremony site, waiting for the balance of the bridal party to arrive: grand parents, parents, brides maids and then the bride (Partner B) walks down the aisle. So now the question: who is going to walk the bride down the aisle? There are several options: the most traditional is with dad or a male member of the family, then there area few other options: mom and dad together, whether bride parent’s are divorced or not. The bride walking with her children, regardless of whether the children are older or younger. Then, there is the bride coming down the aisle by herself. Lastly, a sort of new trend: bride and groom walk down the aisle together fully representing what the celebration is about: The two of them getting married to each other.

We would further like to suggest the language of “giving the bride away” as really no longer a fitting or even an acceptable phrase since it comes from a time when marriages were arranged and women were consider chattel. We have had many conversations with professional women: doctors, nurses, lawyers, college professors, company presidents, and founders, teachers, etc.: women who have been very successful in the worlds of business, academics, arts and science and yet some how have been talked into feeling the need to be accompanied and walked down the aisle. We ask the question: What does walking down the aisle accompanied by another “giving you away” say or symbolically represent? Is this a message you want to present? We pose the question for conversation.

Yes, there are traditions, however, how do they speak to this generation?

Tulle and The Outside Wedding

We love tulle (for the guys: this is pronounced “tool”, so when you hear the word, don’t think work). This is a wonderful fabric and naturally the fabric most often thought about when couples or mothers and daughters start thinking weddings, dresses, veils,  ceremonies and decorating. Tulle has many wonderful uses. Additionally, the cost of tulle is very reasonable. Wrap ordinary chairs with tulle and you immediately have a special environment. Drape it from chair to chair. Hang it over the railings. It is a great material and easy to use. Some of the most beautiful dresses we have seen are layered with tulle. However, we raise this consideration: some environments are more tulle friendly than others. A wedding ceremony and reception inside, is usually tulle friendly.  If, however you are having your wedding ceremony and reception in a garden or mostly outside you may want to consider the season and the bug population. Remember tulle is essentially netting and a tulle dress might not be the best outside choice. We have seen a fabulous bridal dress of tulle at a magnificent garden wedding catch and trap gnats and flies much to the consternation of the bride. In most cases, some bug repellent will take care of this issue. So as with so many things about your ceremony, consider the conditions of the outside environment.

Charlie and Cheryl

http://www.weddingministersri.com

The Purpose of Our Blog

The name of our blog  “Only The Ceremony” states  our focus. We will discuss a wide spectrum of topics that involve only the (wedding) ceremony. Our blog will focus on the many aspects of what is involved in creating a unique and personal wedding ceremony. We will explore ideas, rituals, prayers, readings, words, actions, colors, and flowers.  We will discuss the various roles of many the people who will help you create your wedding ceremony to make it truly yours.  All of the ideas we are sharing can add to how you are able to create a more uniqueness and personal  ceremony, all the while celebrating the tremendous love and joy you are sharing with each other, with your families and friends and with the world.

In our blog, we will be sharing with you our thoughts, feelings and experiences from what we have culled from the 1700 or so wedding we have celebrated. To date we have already identified over 180 topics to share, and with your input, that number will expand. We will be writing about planning and detailing, the wedding rehearsal, the actual celebration of the ceremony, to the final steps of the recessional that will take you down the aisle into your new life as a married coupled, plus a while lot more! We want you to have the best experience of your celebration, of your wedding, and of your love.

Charlie and Cheryl

http://www.weddingministersri.com

30 Special Words of Love

“I promise to be true to you in good times and bad, in sickness and in health I will love you and honor you all the days of my life.”

If you are reading this you are either preparing for marriage, you are married, or working very closely with those who are preparing to walk down the aisle. These 30 special words, or a variation of them, are the promise of one heart to the other, the foundation of a contract to a relationship that will last a lifetime. These are the words that shine and display the love of one individual for and other.

 A few years ago, Cheryl wrote a meditative reading for one of our wedding ceremonies. The piece has evolved to become a favorite reading within the ceremony of many of our couples. This is what she wrote:  

 Marriage is the best “things” we do as human being. We fall in love. We commit our lives to each other. We share that love with the world. There is no other movement of the heart, idea in our minds, or action in our lives that is greater than sharing our love with another human being. Marriage is the fabric that brings together persons, creates families, defines villages, protects nations, reveres the aging, and strives for perfection. It spurs the soul to greater and deeper love. Marriage is the strength that overcomes adversity, holds together when the world is falling apart around it, endures when all else seems lost, and suffices when the need is the greatest. Marriage fills the lover with certainty, teaches patience, nurtures creativity, and demands vigilance against all that would want to destroy it.Marriage remains when all the light and frivolous feelings and desires of youth have faded into the years. Marriage, when tended by fidelity and understanding, sustains both the lovers and their love.    ~Cheryl Cavalconte~

Cheryl and I are happily and deliciously married.  We feel being in a committed married relationship is the best thing in the world that calls us to wholeness, and healing, that is supportive, caring, sensitive, warm, challenging, and stretching. A relationship where there is fun, laughs, serious conversation, genuine concern, safe, tender hugs, compassion, listening with the heart, and honesty, openness, and willingness to each hold each other close. I can continue to name all the wonderful aspects of marriage and love and yet not truly nor totally describe the love shared by you and by each individual couple since each relationship is totally unique. The music composer Peter Iiyich Tchaikovsky says “we do not speak enough about good marriages!” We totally agree with him. So here is to all of you who are in good healthy relationships and are on the threshold of marriage, in love with being in love and are willing to continue to grow each and every day.

 Charlie and Cheryl www.weddingministersri.com

Next Time our Blog topic will be:  Thoughts About Your Ceremony