Malika and Sergio live in New York City, but wanted to return to Cornell University in Ithaca to celebrate their wedding. Due to the distance, we never had a chance to meet in-person prior to the big day... but that wasn't a problem, as we were able to handle all of the planning through a couple of phone calls and a series of emails. But there was one little twist when I arrived at the Park Atrium inside Cornell's Statler Hall. I'll tell you what happened in this blog post... and of course, I'll recap the music and share some photos, too!
Throughout the planning process, I had envisioned setting-up my equipment adjacent to the dance floor, as usual. I believe the bride and groom also had the same impression. But when I arrived, the manager said the dinner tables took up more floor space than I think anyone had envisioned. To avoid too much "crowding" near the dance floor, the venue management decided to put me on a second-floor balcony, overlooking the entire space.
Although I wasn't expecting this twist, thankfully, I've played a wedding reception from a balcony before, so this was a familiar concept. Remembering how I altered my usual set-up for that earlier wedding, I immediately envisioned how I'd set things up here for Malika and Sergio. The only significant challenge was that the balcony was quite a ways from the dance floor, and a tall drapery dividing the bar area from the rest of the space would obscure my view, but I could still see enough to know what was going on at any given moment.
In these first three photos, you can see how things were set-up. Click any photo for a larger view.
- Left: My lighting truss, which is usually raised above the DJ table, was set at minimum height, with the lights aimed down at the dance floor.
- Center: View from the landing between the 2nd and 3rd floors, where I positioned one of my speakers. (Since the 3rd floor was not being used, it was not a hazard.) I used some spare equipment to create a makeshift "wedge" for this speaker to rest upon, so it would be tilted downward toward the crowd.
- Right: View from the ground floor showing where my other speaker was located, in relation to the balcony.
Many more photos from the evening right after a recap of Malika and Sergio's picks for the key songs of the night:
- Wedding Party Intros: Duke Dumont feat. Jax Jones / I Got U
- First Dance: José Gonzalez / Heartbeats
- Bride / Father Dance: James Taylor / Fire and Rain
- Groom / Mother Dance: Ben E. King / Stand By Me
- Bouquet Toss: Rihanna / Only Girl in the World
- Last Dance of the Night for Everyone: Claude de Bussy / Claire de Lune
And now for the photos from the reception!
Click any photo below for a larger version.
For even more photos, keep an eye on Erica Hasenjager Photography's website and Facebook page -- this is the second or third time we've happened to work on the same wedding, so I know the photos from Erica and her assistant will be spectacular!
Malika posted the following review on WeddingWire:
Peter provided DJ services for our wedding reception at Cornell University this past June, and he was really awesome to work with! He was very flexible during the planning process and on our wedding day, which was incredibly helpful! He played the best instrumental music during our dinner hour (everyone was raving about it!) and got people dancing during the latter half of the night. I'd definitely recommend him!
I'm very happy that Malika and Sergio selected me to help them celebrate their wedding day! Although I've been to Ithaca for a few other weddings, this was the first time I've been to the Cornell campus -- what a beautiful campus! I hope to have a chance to return someday.