Pianist | Keyboard player | Teacher

A [wedding] day in the life

Last Saturday saw me drive 3.5 hours south to Chateau la Commanderie. (This is the furthest south I’m going in 2022 – to my knowledge.)

I got there three hours before I was due to play, just to be on the safe side. Which meant there was plenty of time to chat to other people on the team for the day (the planner and florists, on this occasion), and to see if everything was as anticipated.

It wasn’t.

An acoustic piano I was expecting to be there for the cocktails was no longer due. But that was OK, because I brought both of my keyboards, to be – again – on the safe side. Here’s my setup for the wedding ceremony:

wedding at la commanderie
Natural shade on a very hot day

And here’s my second setup, for the drinks part of the afternoon:

cocktail area at la commanderie
Ready for the garden party (or so I thought)

I was ready in plenty of time, and ran through the song requested for the Processional: “This will be”, by Natalie Cole. Yes, it’s largely a four-chord song, but it has to be played with energy and confidence, so the extra time was ideal.

Welcome drinks and ceremony

People arrived half an hour before the service, so I played some low-key stuff – Satie, Louis Armstrong, Elton John etc. Then came the Natalie Cole, with a bit of Yann Tiersen during the service (in English, French and [I think] Arabic), before Stevie Wonder for the Recessional.


After the service, I found the location for the cocktails had changed, so I needed to reset everything. I had some very nice compliments from friends of the happy couple while I did this, which are always welcome. Then I played until it was time for dinner.

After food that was seriously delicious, I packed up the car, said my goodbyes, and drove another 3.5 hours home. The thermometer told me it was 37C at 21h45 and I saw mountains (mountains!) as my journey began.

A long day, and a good one for countless reasons – and I send all my best wishes to Inès and John!


I just received this email, from the bride:

I wanted to thank you for making my wedding day so special. The music you played was wonderful and created the ambiance I imagined. Several of my friends and family complimented your work as well!

I also want to thank you for your patience and flexibility. Planning a wedding from abroad isn’t the easiest, but you made working with you a breeze!

Thanks again,


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

One thought on “A [wedding] day in the life”