dateMarch 14, 2018
What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Will Figaro and Susanna ever make it the altar? So many roadblocks are placed in their path, you may begin to wonder if there will actually be a marriage in The Marriage of Figaro.
We asked three opera stars about their wackiest wedding day stories.
“My wife was a bridesmaid in a wedding where the maid of honor forgot to bring the rings,” recalls Joseph Barron, who plays Figaro in Opera Carolina’s upcoming production. “During the ceremony, my wife had to run out the side door in order to retrieve them and sneak back in with no one noticing.”
Melinda Whittington (Countess Almaviva) said she and her husband, Phil “had no drama close to that which Susanna and Figaro experience” at their own wedding. And yet … their love of music led to an unexpectedly lengthy ceremony on New Year’s Eve 2015.
“We had amazing music at our wedding – an 18-voice ensemble of local friends and my professional colleague-friends, a violinist, two organists, a trumpet and a trombone,” she recalls. “While a typical wedding mass is about an hour and a half, ours ended up being two and a half hours. It definitely threw off the whole timeline. But every guest we talked to said it didn't feel long. They enjoyed the free concert!”
Melinda and her husband were destined to have beautiful music at their wedding. They met while singing in the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra chorus. “I was auditioning like crazy as a young artist, and while I was waiting for something to pop, I missed making music,” recalls Melinda. “I joined the chorus … and met the love of my life! He’s a developmental optometrist by trade, but it is such a joy to share a love of, and ability for, music. He’s a fantastic baritone.”
Melinda and her then-fiancé delegated a few tasks in the days leading up in the wedding. Her sister-in-law was in charge of hand lettering names on place cards. “However, she didn't know everyone in our Charlotte friend circle,” Melinda says. “And I didn't consider that my guest spreadsheet included some unmarried couple friends listed under one or the other's last names.”
“Two couples ended up both being written with the woman's last name, and one with the man's! They found it funny,” she continued. “Within a year of our wedding, all three of those couples were engaged or married. My sister-in-law foresaw the future!”
Opera Carolina’s director of marketing, Megan Miller (who’s an opera singer herself), had more than a few things go wrong on her wedding day in her hometown of Jupiter, Fla. First, she and her brand-new husband, Brent, sent their wedding party from the church to the reception in the limo intended for them. The newly married couple had more photos to take and figured the limo could easily get to the reception and make a return trip to the church for the couple of the hour.
Just as they were wondering where their limo was, a groomsman texted them a photo of the limo … and its flat tire.
Megan’s parents came to the rescue and offered to drive the newlyweds to their reception in their old Chrysler 360. “I was not a bridezilla,” recalls Megan. “But I also did not want to be taken to my reception in the car my parents had had since they were newlyweds.”
But there was no ready alternative. They’d have to make do. Megan said the car wasn’t big enough for her dress. “My dress was up to my face,” she says. “I couldn’t see anything, but I could tell we caught every red light between the church and the hotel.”
The bride and groom were hours late getting to their own party.
Susanna and Figaro eventually say their “I do’s” and forget all the turmoil leading up to that sweet moment. And every couple with a “what went wrong” story ends up laughing about it later. Love, in the end, is all that matters.