This week, Stylist’s resident bride Natasha Tomalin, who gets married in October, discusses what to do in case of eclectic music taste
As I hurtle faster and faster to the finish line, slowly but surely more and more things get ticked off the list (thank God!); deposits get paid, decisions get made and fittings and trials booked in.
In my life so far, music (especially classical) has played a very big part. I learned to play the violin from age four, classically trained as an opera singer in my teens and my favourite film of all time is Amadeus (it's about Mozart – if you haven’t seen it, shame on you). I’m also pretty ‘off-brand’ with my popular-music taste, as my friends and colleagues constantly remind me. I’d take Katy Perry over Cradle Of Filth any day and with that in mind, I’m really keen for an eclectic mix of music at my wedding.
We ruled out the possibility of having a live band pretty early on, mainly because I personally think that people like dancing to proper tunes, not the knock-off versions (and let's be honest it’s a wedding not a gig), but its your day and have a band if you want to etc etc.
We actually found the DJ at our venue’s wedding fair, which was a great thing to go to, not only because it showcased what the castle will look like when you get married, but because many of the suppliers who work with the castle are there. It’s a great chance to meet them, grill them about everything and test their product. We actually met two of our suppliers at the event and I couldn’t be happier with them.
Marcel Mendez, our DJ, knew the venue really well, having played there at a number of past events. He was also able to provide lighting – key if you don’t want you and your guests to feel like you’re hanging out in a butcher’s shop. Make sure you tailor your playlist with the DJ and include songs that your guests will dance to – no one wants an empty dance floor!
I wanted to personalise our ceremony, not only with readings and our own vows, but by having someone to sing at the wedding. The 1998 film The Wedding Singer has turned the term into a bit of a cliché, but I approached my brilliantly talented former singing teacher Angela Henckel (a professional opera singer) who classically trained me in my youth, and she was delighted to be a part of my big day. She will sing a Dvořák aria during the signing of the register.
To contrast the above, we have opted for a jazz trio at the reception for a more relaxed vibe. On the recommendation of a work colleague, I contacted the Royal Academy of Music, who do a scheme where you can hire their super-talented students at a fraction of the price of already established artists.
The personal songs – walking up and down the aisle, first dance, cutting of the cake – have yet to be decided. I had a lovely merry evening with Ian and my parents listening and singing along to all sorts of music for these bits, something I highly recommend, although I’m not sure that walking down the aisle to Beethoven’s Fifth symphony is quite right… DA DA DA DAAAAHHHHHHHH!