We're going to go out on a limb and guess that you've never been to a wedding with a boomwhacker workshop... (if you have, then we're impressed!)
Well, this month we were lucky enough to go to the wedding of Geof Brooke and Ali Plowright, who wanted something a bit different for their ceremony. Ali, the bride, is a life coach and has a deep interest in Feng Shui, so she had the idea of using our boomwhackers as a "space clearing" ceremony for their relationship. Put simply, the noise of the drums were to clear all the emotional history out of their relationship and start their marriage on a clean slate. We were to wait for our cue during the wedding ceremony, where we would start playing.
This was a really interesting, different project for us and definitely something we'd like to do more often. The ceremony was taking place in a beautiful lower meadow near Youlgreave in Derbyshire. However, as with seemingly all weddings, there was some weather-related drama on the day!
In, out, in, out...
The wedding was set in a marquee, with our drumming circle to take place outside.
However, it was one of those days where the weather just wouldn't co-operate. It was muggy, the clouds were low, and it constantly looked like it was about to rain - when it did rain it would go for about thirty seconds and then stop. Obviously this was hardly ideal, but we had to think of a way to make it work.
Before the ceremony started, we wondered whether to do the ceremony inside the teepee, but this wasn't straight forward. The seating was arranged in rows of chairs as opposed to a circle. This was not unworkable, but we usually need to allow some preparation time for this seating format - something we didn't really have. However compared to the prospect of a session in the pouring rain, it was looking like the best option.
So after moving our equipment inside, we decided it would be best to do it outside after all - meaning we had to drag it all out again (this was still before the ceremony had begun.) Luckily the kitchen helpers from the catering offered us a hand and helped us to move it all. Then (would you believe it), once we were outside with the boomwhackers, it rained again so we brought everything back inside!
All's well that ends well!
With boomwhackers inside the marquee and the ceremony started, the weather teased us again and it looked like it was getting better, so we again tried to take advantage of the moment.
Yet again we carried everything out to the front field while the ceremony was moving on quickly. We had to pay attention, as there were certain words that would cue us to come into the teepee and start drumming. We were very grateful for the help of the catering staff, as their help meant that we could stay and listen out for the cue rather than potentially missing it.
We did our performance inside the marquee, which went very well; once it was finished, we invited all the guests outside to join us in playing the boomwhackers. By a stroke of luck, the weather just about held out.
Actually, it did start raining a little towards the end... but by that point, everybody was having too much fun to be bothered by it!