If life is but a stage and we are merely players, then all my friends are actors. It was a huge pleasure for me to preside over the wedding of a fellow thespian and moviemaker last summer. I often refer to the area where I perform the weddings as a stage, and this time I got to conduct one on-stage.
The theme was Shakespeare’s “A Mid-summer Night’s Dream”. We were on the stage at the Kanata Theatre. I had met many of the guests as they entered the theatre. Most were fellow actors and crew that I’d work with over the past ten years. It was therefore a friendly and most boisterous crowd in good spirits. Now they were all seated in the audience and I waited in the wings on stage right for Act 3 Scene 1 to start.
The lights came up, some haze enveloped the stage and a moonlight sky was project on the cyc behind us. On stage left was a gazebo from which Titania began her speech. Soon Bottom (the groom) appeared – to the amusement of the crowd. Bottom and Titania engaged in their dialogue. At one point the groom stopped – looked at the audience and said “Ive forgotten my line”. We all laughed. They picked up where they left off until Titania called out the fairies, “Peaseblossom! Cobweb! Moth! and Mustardseed!”
This was the cue for the bridal party to enter. Four bridesmaids in different colours, made their way from the side of the audience, up the stage and into the gazebo. Finally, the bride entered with her father to much cheer. That was my cue to enter and position myself center stage. The bride made her way on stage and the father presented her to the groom. The couple came to rest in front of me.
From there the ceremony proceeded as usual. One of the kids in the bridal party presented the rings. When it came time to sign the register, I made a big production of getting the table from stage right. Finally, the kiss followed and the crowd gave them a standing ovation! They exited off the stage into the audience and out into the lobby. A grand reception followed where people were all over the theatre. The first dance was… of course… on center stage.