Monday, December 3, 2012

A Wedding in San Jeronimo, Cusco

I was told by David and Alvaro that I would be playing in a quartet on Friday instead of singing at Monasterio and Marriott like I have been doing the past couple of week. Great! When were we going to practice? We ended up finding some time in the morning yesterday to practice the 5 pieces. The repertoire included Pachabel's Canon in D Major, Shostakovich's Waltz no. 2, and arrangement of Coldplay's Yellow, Te Amaré, O Sole Mio, and Besame Mucho. I rehearsed with Yuset, the cellist and Brickman(?) the second violinist. I can't deny, it was pretty cool being 1st violin for the first time. I am never first violin. Anyway, we finished up and I went on my way to start my incredibly full Friday. There was a slight crisis that was averted in the afternoon. I accidentally left the pocket open on my violin case that holds me music. Three pieces fell out during my trip from Qantu to the bus stop. It wasn't until the cobrador handed me a few sheets of music that were falling out of my case while I was in the combi did I realize what happened. After some phone calls I was able to get in contact with Yuset who printed out more copies. Phew!

In order to save some money I decided to take the San Jeronimo bus. It took an hour to get to Larapa. Typical.

I had no trouble finding the room we would be playing in. It was draped in white and pink cloth. There were 14 tables each set to seat 10 guests and the chairs were draped with white and pink tool. Each table had a vase that was about a meter high and at the top of each one was a bouquet of pink and white flowers. In the center back there was a table set up for the bride and groom to have their civil ceremony and next to the table was an itty bitty 4 layer cake with a very cheesy plastic bride and groom on top. There was also a fake fire machine that had a light glowing and air blowing orange colored paper. It was attached to pink cloth that went up to the ceiling where it continued along the ceiling towards the front of the room. There was another one on the other side but with no fake fire attached. This was quite the display and to top it all off there were silver beads hanging from the middle light fixture like the ones you would put in your doorway as a teenager or that separate a fortune teller's front room from her work room. They were shiny though!

The wedding planner from Cusco Eventos explained to us how the music would go and when we would be playing. The canon was for the bride and groom's entry, Waltz for the second dance (the first dance of the bride and groom will get its own paragraph.), O sole Mio for cutting the cake, Yellow for after the ceremony was over, and that pretty much summed it up.

We got to the room with plenty of time for a sound check. Claudio played guitar with us and quickly reviewed what he would be playing. It was all pretty simple. There was a man handing out pisco sours. Claudio took no time in grabbing a few for all of us. Haha! We waited for the bride and groom to make their entrance while simultaneously waiting for the second violinist who was still on a bus when the bride and groom did make their entrance. Yuset and I made do and playing the entrance to Pachabel's Canon. We only ended up playing 4 bars of so but it was not as pretty as it could have been with a second violin.

The event coordinator urged everything along and the couple made their way to the table where someone from the municipality of San Jeronimo was waiting to marry the couple in their civil ceremony.

The ceremony itself didn't take too long but the toasts afterward were quite the opposite. Each parent of the bride and groom had some time to talk. First the father of the groom said his thanks to everyone, then the mother of the bride. Each of theirs was quite short and sweet. When the father of the bride got on the mic it was apparent that he liked to hear himself talk and when the reverb on a mic is such that every word echos for half a second afterward he made sure to talk nice and slow. I think he really liked hearing himself like the voice of god from heaven. The event coordinator had to cut him off when he tried to make a toast though. The mother of the groom still had to say her words. She made sure to make them quick. Back to the father of the bride. The toast was finally made and he seemed content with himself afterward. We played the Waltz by Shostakovich for the second dance that included all the close family members. We repeated it three times and then continued on to play Coldplay's Yellow while the couple cut the cake and then made ourselves comfortable for the most incredibly long and depressing speech made by the godfather of the bride.

"And you must be ready for the fights and the struggles that come your way and when your kids are yelling mommy and daddy don't get frustrated but you will. Life is not easy but you will have each other. Don't let satan take your marriage down..."

You get the point. It was ridiculous and went on for 10 minutes! played a little more of Yellow and then we were done. In total it was about an hour but we only ended up playing 15 minutes or so. As we were leaving another quartet started playing and getting ready for Keren, a well known opera singer here in Cusco, to start singing. There would eventually be a big salsa/cumbia band to play. What really got me about all of it is how late the entire thing started and how late it would most likely go. A reception starts at 9pm and I imagine ended up going til the wee hours of the morning.

What I know for sure from all of it is that I don't want to have ridiculously long speeches from anyone and that I will not be using pink as one of the themes for my wedding. It was a bit tacky for me. I wouldn't mind green though. :)

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