My “Best of 2016” Colorado Wedding Ceremony Vendors

My 2016 top wedding vendors are in! Once again I have chosen my favorite vendors from last season in three different categories - wedding photographer, wedding planner, and wedding venue. These people were an inspiration to me and a joy to get to know and work with. My vendor choices are JoAnn Moore of Mountains and Meadows Weddings and Events (Colorado and California Wedding Planner), Preston Utley Photography (Colorado Wedding Photographer), and The River Bend (Lyons, Colorado Wedding Ceremony Venue). Congratulations!

Mountains and Meadows Weddings and Events

Award Winning Event Specialist serving Colorado, California and beyond

What I Loved: Wouldn’t it be fun if your best friend was also your expert wedding planner? How about if your wedding planner turned into one of your best friends? JoAnn was so easy to work with. She is very efficient, but for her it wasn’t just about getting things done. JoAnn is also genuine and personable and I could tell that she loves her job. She was great at taking the lead and communicating with me while also being flexible and accommodating for us in every way.

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Preston Utley

Colorado Wedding Photographer

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What I Loved: Preston Utley captures moments that are so lovely that they seem like they must have been carefully staged, but I’ve seen him in action and it’s all genuine, in the moment, breathtaking reality. These amazing photos are enough to win Preston a top place in my vendors this year but he’s also just a great guy and fun to be around. He and his team move around the event so quietly that you don't notice they are there, but they also seem to be everywhere at once, capturing each and every unique moment.

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The River Bend

Colorado Wedding Venue

What I Loved: The River Bend is a charming wedding venue in an idyllic setting that highlights the extraordinary beauty of Colorado’s great outdoors, and yet it's only a 30 minute drive from Boulder. This beautiful property is private and quiet, graced with mature trees and an expansive tidy lawn. The best part is the dramatic redstone cliffs and St. Vrain River that run behind the ceremony site. The staff was wonderful and helpful and they seem to offer just about everything one would need for a beautiful country wedding.

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Flute Quartet Wedding Ceremony Music at the Chapel at Beaver Creek

Photos Courtesy of    Preston Utley Photography

Photos Courtesy of Preston Utley Photography

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On a Saturday in mid-December, my flute quartet (flute, violin, viola, cello) left Denver and headed up to Beaver Creek, Colorado to play for a holiday wedding ceremony. A blizzard was forecast to hit the Colorado mountains that evening and we left very early and were prepared to face the worst. When we left Denver it was sunny and in the 50's but the weather quickly became worse as we drove further into the mountains. We drove for five hours over dark and icy roads thought the blizzard. Accidents and stranded vehicles were everywhere but I drove carefully and we enjoyed each other's company inside our cozy car.

We arrived safely at the Chapel at Beaver Creek and it was such a welcoming sight after our long drive. Colored lights and greenery were everywhere and the sanctuary was bright, warm and charmingly decorated for the season. As we waited to play, we enjoyed listening to prelude music played by Michael Lancaster on the bagpipes. To conclude the prelude, our quartet played "All I Want is You" by U2.

Prelude Music: Michael Lancaster on bagpipes All I Want is You (U2) by Christen Stephens flute quartet

Wedding Ceremony Music: The Ludlows from Legends of the Fall ~ Wedding Party Reign of Love (Coldplay) ~ Bride's Processional Glasgow City Police Pipers by Michael Lancaster - Recessional

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Wedding Planner ~ Meg Stepanek of Gemini Event Planning
Ceremony Quartet ~ Christen Stephens - Flute Quartet
Ceremony Bagpiper ~ Michael Lancaster
Photographer ~ Preston Utley
Videographer ~ Kyle Hodge

Make your wedding magical and hire my Flute Quartet

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Flute Trio Wedding Ceremony Music at Vail Interfaith Chapel

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Recently, our flute trio (flute, viola, cello) played classical and contemporary wedding ceremony music at Vail Interfaith Chapel in Vail, Colorado. We always love playing at Vail Chapel because of the beautiful acoustics that carry our sound throughout the sanctuary. Our very busy bride had a high stress job, so after a short consultation, I put together a music set list for her prelude and worked with her day-of coordinator for the details. I mixed classical and contemporary music and chose songs based on the bride's musical preference. The ceremony was emotional and joyful and the couple had the support of a lot of friends and family. After we played the recessional, a bagpiper played outside and led everyone to the reception site. We left the Vail Chapel to a gorgeous autumn day.

Sample Prelude Music: Allegro from Spring (Vivaldi), Ode to Joy (Beethoven), The Wedding Song (Peter, Paul, and Mary), Make You Feel My Love (Adele), Salzburger Menuette (Mozart),

Wedding Ceremony Music: Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach)~ Seating of the Families Sheep May Safely Graze (Bach) ~ Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, Flower Girl, Ringbearer Canon in D ~ Bride Trumpet Voluntary ~ Recessional

Wedding Ceremony Vendors: Venue - Vail Interfaith Chapel, Vail, Colorado Wedding Coordinator - Steps and Stones Photographer - Maheux Studios Photography Videographer - Larisa Graham Videography Florist - Petals and Pours Musicians - Christen Stephens (Flute Trio)

Flute and Harp Wedding Ceremony Music at Ten Mile Station in Breckenridge, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

In late summer our flute and harp duo played for a wedding ceremony at Ten Mile Station in Breckenridge, Colorado. This busy destination bride relied on her mom to handle most of her wedding planning and her mom did an amazing job with everything including the timeline, decor, and last minute details. The ceremony was outdoors on the patio, and as the guests arrived in shuttles, our duo greeted them with classical music to set the mood. At the bride's request, we finished with "The Lord's Prayer" right before the ceremony began. After the ceremony, we moved indoors to play a mix of classical and contemporary music during the cocktail hour.

Sample Prelude Music:
Adagio (Bach), Sheep May Safely Graze (Bach), Piano Concerto No. 21 (Mozart), Arioso (Bach), The Lord's Prayer (Malotte)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Hornpipe (Purcell) ~ Family and wedding party
Canon in D (Pachelbel) ~ Bride
Meditation from Thais ~ Knot tying ceremony
Simple Gifts ~ Recessional

Sample Cocktail Hour Music:
Clair De Lune (Debussy), Flower Duet (Delibes), The Days of Wine and Roses (Mancini), Minuet of the Blessed Spirits (Gluck), La Vie En Rose (Louis Armstrong), Someone to Watch Over Me (Gershwin), Over the Rainbow, Largo from the Four Seasons (Vivaldi), When I Fall in Love, The Swan (Saint Saens)

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Flute and Guitar Wedding Ceremony Music at Black Canyon Inn in Estes Park, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens,   Photos with watermark courtesy of Joe Pyle Photography

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens, Photos with watermark courtesy of Joe Pyle Photography

It was forecast to be a cool and rainy day when our flute and guitar duo headed up to Estes Park to play for this Minnesota couple's wedding ceremony. Everyone's prayers were answered and the sun shone brightly warming the crisp mountain breezes. The wedding was held under the Pavilion at Black Canyon Inn, and the backdrop of mountains and blue skies and clouds was epic. The bride and groom requested that we play a mix of classical and popular music for the prelude and they selected their processional and recessional songs.

From the bride: "Beautiful Music! We chose the flute and guitar. She (Christen) was very easy and fun to work with! Very professional and we are so so so happy we chose her and her team."

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Sample Prelude Music:
Andante from Sonata in C Major (Mozart), Annie's Song (John Denver), To Make You Feel My Love (Adele), The Girl (Dallas Green)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Wedding Party ~ Canon in D (Pachelbel)
Flower Girl ~ Reign of Love (Coldplay)
Bride ~ Can't Help Falling in Love (Elvis)
Recessional ~ Could You Be Loved (Bob Marley)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue - Black Canyon Inn
Photographer - Joe Pyle
Ceremony Musicians - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute and Guitar Duo

Flute and Violin Wedding Ceremony Music at Sapphire Point in Dillon, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens,  Photos Courtesy of    Steve Tinetti Photography

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens, Photos Courtesy of Steve Tinetti Photography

In July, our flute and violin duo played for a very intimate wedding ceremony at Sapphire Point in Dillon, Colorado. It was such a small wedding ceremony that there weren't actually any guests! Instead, this destination bride decided to have her ceremony professionally recorded and then share the recording with her friends and family members.

Our duo played soothing prelude music before the ceremony as the bride and groom posed for their wedding photos. Then, we cleared the area of curious hikers so that the bride and groom could make their grand entrance down the winding forest path. Our flute and violin duo played "Postcard to Henry Purcell" from "Pride and Prejudice" as the bride and groom walked. After the ceremony, we played a little more and we both even signed the marriage certificate as witnesses, and posed for a few photos with the bride.

From the bride: "Our wedding was just a small elopement at Sapphire Point in Colorado but we couldn't imagine it without music. Not only did Christen give us several song selections but she arranged a song that I requested. She played beautifully and the music helped calm our nerves. I would highly recommend Christen for any size wedding. Her music is exquisite!"

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Sample Prelude Music:
A Thousand Years (Christina Perri), Air from Suite #3 (Handel), Ode to Joy (Beethoven), Romanza (Mozart), St. Anthony's Chorale (Brahms), Traumereri (Schumann), Can't Help Falling in Love (Elvis)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Bride's Processional and Recessional ~ Postcard to Henry Purcell from Pride and Prejudice

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue ~ Sapphire Point
Officiant ~ Julie Wright-Kyle
Photographer ~ Steve Tinetti Photography
Ceremony Musicians ~ Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute and Violin Duo

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Flute and Guitar Wedding Ceremony Music at the River Bend in Lyons, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

In late June, our flute and guitar duo played for a wedding ceremony at the River Bend in Lyons, Colorado. The setting at the River Bend was perfect for this outdoorsy adventure loving couple. It was idyllic with mature trees, a lush lawn, and a river curving in front of high rock walls. The guests enjoyed drinks, socializing, and playing corn-hole by the river before the wedding. Our flute and guitar duo played a mix of classical, popular and jazz tunes for the wedding ceremony and cocktail hour, and then we played another hour for the dinner reception.

From the bride: "Christen Stephens was a wonderful addition to our wedding - very professional, timely, and easy to communicate with to figure out details for the wedding. Music was beautiful and just what we were looking for. Highly recommended."

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Sample Prelude Music: Invention No. 10 (Bach), Have I Told You Lately (Van Morrison), Autumn Leaves, Everything I Do (I Do it For You), Annie's Song, The Days of Wine and Roses, Berceuse, Op. 16 (Faure), Arioso (Bach)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Canon in D ~ Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, Flower Girl
The Ludlows ~ Bride's Processional
Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 ~ Recessional

Sample Cocktail Hour and Dinner Music:
Cheek to Cheek, All My Loving, Fly Me to the Moon, Entr'acte (Bizet), Try to Remember, Tango (Albeniz), Gavotte (Handel), To Make You Feel My Love (Adele), Giuliani Sonatas (selections), When I Fall in Love, Misty, Pastorale (Vivaldi), Unforgettable

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue - River Bend
Wedding Coordinator - Purple Summer Events
Photographer - Nine Photography
Ceremony and Reception Music - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens -  Flute and Guitar Duo

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

String Trio Wedding Ceremony Music at the Vail Wedding Island

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Sample Prelude Music:
All You Need is Love (Beatles), Don't Stop Belivin' (Journey), Make You Feel My Love (Adele), Yellow (Coldplay), Reign of Love (Coldplay), A Thousand Years (Christina Perri)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach) ~ Seating of the Family and Groomsmen
Young and Beautiful (Lana Del Rey) ~ Bridesmaids, Ringbearers, Flower Girls
Canon in D (Pachelbel) ~ Bride
Wedding March (Mendelssohn) ~ Recessional

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Wedding Planner - Meg Stepanek of Gemini Event Planning
Venue - Vail Wedding Island at the Vail Golf Club
Photographer - Michele DeVires - IN Photography
Cake - Mountain Flour
Rentals - Alpine Party Rentals
Wedding Ceremony Music - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - String Trio

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens,  Photos Courtesy of Michele DeVries of    IN Photography

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens, Photos Courtesy of Michele DeVries of IN Photography

It was during a gorgeous day at the end of June that our string trio had the pleasure of playing for a large wedding ceremony at the Vail Wedding Island, located at the Vail Golf Course. The happy bride and groom had an epic backdrop of sparkling water reflecting a view of the Gore Range Mountains. There were about 35 people in the wedding party and the processional was grand. The bride looked stunning in a fitted lacy wedding gown and she wore an elegant and delicate vintage lace veil which she had carefully attached just before the wedding. The weather was perfect as the guests enjoyed cool drinks and champagne at the beverage table before the wedding.

The bride made a special request that our string trio play "Young and Beautiful" by Lana Del Rey for the processional of the ringbearers, flower girls, and bridesmaids. I made a special arrangement for the processional by adding some rhythmic elements played underneath the soaring melody, and it worked perfectly for walking.

From the bride: "Christen Stephens is absolutely the best. She played the most fabulous music during our ceremony. It was gorgeous. She went above and beyond mixing classical music with modern music just as I requested. She even created a gorgeous rendition of a new song for the wedding that went perfectly with the rest of the classical songs played in the processional. I would HIGHLY recommend Christen Stephens."

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Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Flute and Cello Duo Wedding Ceremony Music at the Wedgwood Center in Boulder, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens,  Photos with a watermark are courtesy of    TomK Photography

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens, Photos with a watermark are courtesy of TomK Photography

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:

Venue: Wedgewood Wedding and Banquet Center
Photographer: Tom K Photo
Wedding Ceremony Music: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute and Cello Duo

In June, our flute and cello duo played for a very musical destination wedding ceremony at the Wedgwood Wedding and Banquet Center in Boulder, Colorado. The bride and groom had many fun song selections that they incorporated throughout their ceremony, and they each had a secret song that they chose for each other. The groom sang his secret song ("All I Ask of You") to the bride as we accompanied on flute and cello. The groom even sang some of his vows. The ceremony was full of laughter and fun and was truly a celebration of love. I adored the vintage bottles and colored sand that the couple used for their sand pouring ceremony.

Sample Prelude Music:
New York, New York, The Sound of Music, The Ludlows, Can't Help Falling in Love, Moon River, All of Me, Wildflowers (Tom Petty)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach) ~ Seating of the Families
Canon in D (Pachelbel) ~ Bridesmaids and Groomsmen
I Want to Hold Your Hand (Beatles) ~ Flower Girls and Ringbearer
Sweet Child of Mine (Guns N' Roses) ~ Bride's Processional
In the Still of the Nite (The Satins) ~ Sand Ceremony
La Vie En Rose (Louis Armstrong) ~ Bride's song for the groom
All I Ask of You from Phantom of the Opera ~ Groom's song for the bride
Wedding March (Mendelssohn) ~ Recessional
Simple Gifts (Lord of the Dance version) ~ Postlude

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Solo Flute Wedding Ceremony Music at Sapphire Point, Dillon, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens,  Photos with a watermark are courtesy of    Infinite Pixels by Angel

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens, Photos with a watermark are courtesy of Infinite Pixels by Angel

In early June, I played solo flute for a charming 1920's inspired wedding ceremony at Sapphire Point in Dillon, Colorado. Sapphire Point is an overlook that boasts a stunning view of the Dillon Reservoir and the Gore and Tenmile mountain ranges. As I set up my things, I watched the antics of a curious chipmunk, who was eating some trail mix and inspecting a darling parasol that was ready for the bride in case of sun. Sun wasn't a concern after all, because rain was threatening and we all prayed that the storms would hold off for the wedding ceremony.

At the bride's request, I played upbeat classical and Irish music for the prelude as the guests arrived. The weather was beautiful until the middle of the ceremony when large guests of wind blew in dark masses of clouds and it began to rain. The bride and groom agreed to end the ceremony early. I was still able to play the recessional music in the rain because I brought my backup flute - a special flute that is made of plastic and completely waterproof.

From the bride: Christen was great. Even when the weather changed our plans last minute with no rehearsal, Christen kept right on track and made the day perfect. When working with her to plan the wedding music, she was so helpful and professional. She also sounded amazing! Everything was perfect from working with her in planning down to the ceremony and all the last minute changes. We definitely recommend her for your event!

 

Sample Prelude Music:
Unchained Melody, On the Turning Away, The Butterfly (Irish), The Foggy Dew (Irish), Galway Hornpipe, Liebestraum (Lizt), June from the Seasons (Tchaikovsky), The Last Rose of Summer, The Lover's Waltz, Unchained Melody (Righteous Brothers)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Processional (Seating of the Family, Bridesmaids, Groomsmen) ~ Canon in D
Bride ~ In Dreams From the Lord of the Rings
Recessional ~ Drowsy Maggie (Irish)

Vendors:
Officiant: Keith Horstman
Photographer: Infinite Pixels by Angel Photography
Wedding Ceremony Music: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Solo Flute

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Flute Trio Wedding Ceremony Music at Beano's Cabin in Beaver Creek, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens,  Photos Courtesy of    Preston Utley Photography

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens, Photos Courtesy of Preston Utley Photography

In early June, our flute trio (flute, viola, cello) played for an elegant wedding ceremony up in Beaver Creek, Colorado. First, we enjoyed Michael Lancaster's skillful bagpipe performance as the guests arrived and then our trio finished playing the prelude music with some elegant classical selections. After the ceremony, we played a number of contemporary and popular songs to entertain the guests during the cocktail hour. We also played "A Sky Full of Stars" by Coldplay. This song is a favorite of the bride's, and I made a special arrangement of the song for our trio to play by her request. The wedding ceremony couldn't have gone more smoothly than under the watchful eye of Meg Stepanek of Gemini Event Planning.

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Sample Prelude Music:
Ode to Joy (Beethoven), Salzburger Menuette (Mozart), Gigue from suite #3 in D Major (Bach)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Sheep May Safely Graze (Bach) ~ Parents and Grandparents Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach) ~ Bridesmaids and Groomsmen Canon in D (Pachelbel) ~ Bride Handel's Hornpipe Finale ~ Recessional At Last ~ Postlude

Sample Cocktail Hour Music:
Over the Rainbow from the Wizard of Oz, Such Great Heights (Iron and Wine), A Sky Full of Stars (Coldplay), Viva La Vida (Coldplay), Clocks (Coldplay), A Thousand Years (Christina Perri), What a Wonderful World (Louis Armstrong)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Wedding Planner - Meg Stepanek, Gemini Event Planning
Venue - Beano's Cabin
Photographer - Preston Utley
Wedding Ceremony and Cocktail Music - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens Flute Trio (flute, viola, cello)

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Solo Flute Wedding Ceremony Music at the Denver Botanic Gardens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

I recently enjoyed playing solo flute for the wedding ceremony of a delightful couple in Denver, Colorado. The bride was from Turkmeninstan, the groom was from England and their former college teacher from California officiated the wedding ceremony. Of all the places in the world to get married, this couple chose the beautiful Denver Botanic Gardens in Denver, Colorado. They were married under the Water Garden Gazebo by the peaceful Monet Pool, which reflected the beautiful flowers and puffy clouds.The weather was beautiful with just enough clouds in the sky to keep the temperature very comfortable. The ceremony was small with just close family and friends and everyone was so warm and friendly that I felt quite welcome.

From the bride:
"Christen was absolutely amazing! We had our wedding ceremony at Denver Botanic Gardens on June 7, 2016 and couldn't have wished for the greater experience with Christen. We were absolutely impressed with her music, she made our special day magical! The guests loved Christen's playing. I recommend her to anyone who wants beautiful music for their ceremony/wedding, you will be amazed!!!"

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Prelude Music: The Swan, The Ludlows from Legends of the Fall, Minuet from Eight Minuets and Trios, K 315a (Mozart), Romance (Beethoven), Spring (Vivaldi), Simple Gifts, Menuet from the Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach) Postlude: Gavotte (Handel), The Lord's Prayer

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Processional ~ Amazing Grace
Recessional ~ Hornpipe - Purcell

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue - Denver Botanic Gardens
Wedding Ceremony Music - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Solo Flute

My "Best of 2015" Colorado Wedding Ceremony Vendors

Every year, I enjoy picking my favorite wedding vendors from the past year and highlighting their work. As a wedding ceremony musician, it was a record year for destination weddings for me, and I had the pleasure of frequently traveling to the mountains where I enjoyed beautiful weddings and stunning views. My vendor picks and the following photos for this year showcase some of these wonderful locations. My vendor choices are the Donovan Pavilion- Vail Wedding Ceremony Venue, Rachel Olsen Photography- Colorado Wedding Photographer, and Collins Coordination- Dallas, Texas Wedding Planner.

Donovan Pavilion

Vail Colorado Meeting Facility and Destination Wedding Location

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What I Loved: - The beautiful outdoor patio at the pavilion is a private and peaceful setting for a wedding ceremony - The outdoor wedding area is surrounded by a natural park area, a river and mountains, providing a peaceful ambiance - The pavilion is conveniently located in Vail but because it's not in the main tourist area, parking is always available and convenient - The beautiful and spacious indoor gathering area and outdoor areas are laid out in a way that brings guests together into one space without feeling crowded - Brides can have their wedding ceremony and reception in the same area - no need to move guests from one location to another

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Rachel Olsen Photography

Colorado Wedding Photographer

What I Loved: - Rachel really gets to know her couples and captures their individuality in her photos - It is obvious that Rachel loves her job and enjoys each couple that she photographs - Rachel is a friendly person and so easy to work with - Rachel responds to communication quickly - Rachel's photos capture such a wonderful feeling of time and place - Can you feel yourself transported as you view the photos below?

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Collins Coordination

Dallas, Texas Wedding and Event Coordination Company

What I Loved: Katie from Collins Coordination is located in Dallas, Texas so she is not local to Colorado, but she was so great that I wanted to feature her on my blog

- Katie was very organized leading up to the day of the wedding, including detailed lists that she shared with all of the vendors. She made my job easy! - Katie is easy to reach over phone or email - On the day of the wedding, Katie was calm, helpful, friendly, and involved with all aspects of the wedding

Flute and Violin Wedding Ceremony Music at the Denver Botanic Gardens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

This wedding ceremony at the Denver Botanic Garden was held on a gorgeous day in mid-October. The ceremony was held at the Romantic Gardens, and they were washed in warm sunshine, the birds were singing, and the gardens were alive with autumn blooms. Even the guests from Hawaii kept talking about how beautiful it was. It was quite a change from last year when we were buried in snow at the same time of year! The bride hired our flute and violin duo and her one request was that we play "All of Me" by John Legend so I made an arrangement of the song for flute and violin. There were only about 14 guests, and while they took pictures and mingled before the wedding ceremony, we played a mix of classical and popular music. Because of the small size, this ceremony felt very relaxed and I think that the bride and groom truly enjoyed their special day as they mingled with family members and listened to our music.

Prelude Music:
Air from Orpheus (Gluck), Romanza from Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (Mozart), Can't Help Falling in Love (Elvis), Allegro Non Troppo (Pop), Simple Gifts, What a Wonderful World, Vivement from The Italian Sonata (Chedeville), Largo from Xerxes (Handel)

Wedding Vendors:
Venue: Denver Botanic Gardens
Wedding Ceremony Music: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute and Violin Duo

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

Flute and Violin Wedding Ceremony Music in Boulder, Colorado

Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens
Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens
Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens
Colorado Wedding Ceremony Music by Christen Stephens

I was asked by local violinist, Jane Uitti, to join her on my flute to provide beautiful live music for a local mountain wedding ceremony in Boulder. This early autumn ceremony was held at the Wedgewood Wedding and Banquet Center, located just a few minutes drive into the Boulder foothills, combining the charm of the mountains with a convenient location. For her prelude music as the guests arrived, the bride chose all songs by Bach, and then we played traditional wedding ceremony music for the processional. It was a sweet and simple wedding ceremony accompanied by the sound of rushing water in the river below.
 

Prelude Music:
Air from Suite #3 in D major, Arioso from Cantata #156, Gigue from Suite #3 in D major, My Heart is Ever Faithful from Cantata #68, Sheep May Safely Graze from Cantata #208

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Processional ~ Canon in D (Pachelbel)
Unity Candle ~ Ave Verum Corpus (Mozart)
Recessional ~ March in D Major from the Notebook of Anna Magdalena Bach

Flute and Cello Duo Wedding Ceremony Music at Beaver Creek Chapel

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This mid-September mountain wedding ceremony came complete with gorgeous autumn-yellow aspens framing a charming stone chapel, accompanied by ringing church bells and beautiful flute and cello music. I might have stepped into a Norman Rockwell drawing, or it might just be another day at my job. For the prelude, our flute and cello duo played a list of contemporary music specially selected by the bride. The bride chose traditional wedding ceremony music for her processional. During the ceremony, we played Largo from Vivaldi's Four Seasons while the bride and groom lit the unity candle and then signed the marriage certificate. Our music echoed beautifully in this open church building. All photos with a watermark are courtesy of Rachel Olsen Photography.

Ceremony Music:
Mothers light unity candle ~ Ode to Joy (Beethoven)
Groom, Pastor, Bridesmaids and Groomsmen ~ Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach) Bride ~ Canon in D (Pachelbel)
Unity Candle and Marriage Certificate ~ Largo from Vivaldi's Four Seasons
Recessional and Postlude ~ La Rejouissance, Bourree, and Hornpipe from Handel's Water Music

Sample Wedding Prelude Music:
Can't Help Falling in Love (Elvis), Wildflowers (Tom Petty), I Want to Hold Your Hand (Beatles), The Wedding from Legends of the Fall, Can You Feel the Love Tonight (Elton John), Over the Rainbow

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue - The Chapel at Beaver Creek
Photographer - Rachel Olsen Photography
Ceremony Musicians - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens, Flute and Cello Duo

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Flute and Cello Wedding Ceremony Music at The Lodge at Breckenridge

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Our flute and cello duo had an unusually warm and sunny day to play for this scenic outdoor October wedding ceremony in Breckenridge, Colorado. The bride chose all of her wedding prelude, ceremony and cocktail hour music and made two special song requests. Her first request was for me to arrange "On Eagles Wings" to be played as she and her fiancee exchanged private vows. The second song was "Sweet Child O' Mine" by Gun's N' Roses, which I arranged as a special surprise for the groom. I based my arrangement on an arrangement from a YouTube video that the groom really enjoyed. We played "Sweet Child O' Mine" during the receiving line after the ceremony. During the cocktail hour we played a mix of classical, jazz, ragtime, and popular music.

Sample Prelude Music:
Handel's Water Music (selections), Air on the G String (Bach), Rondeau (Mouret), The Wedding from Legends of the Fall

Wedding Ceremony Music:
All I Ask of You ~ Moms, Bridesmaids and Groomsmen, Ringbearer and dog
Canon in D ~ Bride
On Eagle's Wings ~ Private Vow Exchange
The Sound of Music ~ Recessional
Sweet Child of Mine ~ Receiving Line (special surprise for groom)

Sample Cocktail Hour Music:
All of Me, Can't Help Falling in Love (Elvis), A Whole New World from Aladdin, Blackbird (Beatles), Maple Leaf Rag (Joplin), My Funny Valentine, Rondo Alla Turca (Mozart), Meditation from Thais (Massenet)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: The Lodge at Breckenridge
Photographer: Studio Kiva
Ceremony and Cocktail Hour Music: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute and Cello Duo

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Flute and Cello Duo Wedding Ceremony Music at the Vail Wedding Deck

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I was very glad that I brought my winter coat to this chilly rare sunset wedding ceremony on the Vail Wedding Deck. Normally the deck closes before sunset, but a severe thunderstorm had just rolled through, cooling the air and closing the gondola, causing the wedding to be delayed. This destination wedding ceremony was bathed in evening sunset colors forming a glorious backdrop for the bride and groom. Our flute and cello duo played classical prelude music as the guests began to arrive and the bride chose traditional wedding ceremony music for the processional.

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Grandparents and Parents ~ Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach)
Minister, Groom, Groomsmen, Bridesmaids, Ringbearer ~ Ode to Joy (Beethoven) Bride ~ Canon in D (Pachelbel)
Recessional ~ La Rejouissance (Handel)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Vail Wedding Deck
Wedding Coordinator: Katie McCann at Collins Coordination
Ceremony Musicians: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute and Cello Duo

Flute Quartet Wedding Ceremony Music at Ten Mile Station

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Our flute quartet recently played at Ten Mile Station, a mountainside wedding venue in Breckenridge, Colorado. As the guests arrived on buses from the bottom of the mountain, we entertained them with an upbeat selection of classical music. The beautiful bride walked down the aisle accompanied by "The Wedding Song" by Peter, Paul, and Mary. This was a special request by the mother of the bride, and was the same song that she walked down the aisle to when she married. After the wedding, we moved inside where we played popular, rock, and jazz music for another half hour during cocktails.
 

Sample Prelude Music:
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach), Sheep May Safely Graze (Bach), Trumpet Tune (Clarke), Trumpet Voluntary (Purcell), Simple Gifts (Traditional), Handel's Water Music, Ave Maria (Schubert)

Selected Cocktail Hour Music:
Clocks (Coldplay), It Had to Be You, Such Great Heights (Postal Service), A Thousand Years (Christina Perri), Don't Stop Believing (Journey)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Ten Mile Station
Photographer: Danica Larsen Photography
Wedding Ceremony Musicians - Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens - Flute Quartet (flute, violin, viola, cello)

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Flute and Violin Wedding Ceremony Music at the Larkspur Restaurant in Vail

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Our flute and violin duo played for this wedding ceremony at the beautiful Larkspur Restaurant in Vail, Colorado. The wedding was set up on the green lawn to the side of the restaurant and came complete with 360 degree mountain views. The florist graced the wedding area with one of my favorite flowers - beautiful hydrangea blooms. At our music consultation, I played music samples for the bride and together we decided where her favorite songs would fit into the ceremony. Her young niece also had a musical part in the wedding, and she played "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" on her violin while the flower girls and ring bearers walked down. It was a precious moment.

After the wedding, we moved inside the restaurant to play classical music for the cocktail hour. We also threw in a few contemporary pieces that are suited to the flute and violin.

Sample Prelude Music: Rondeau (Mouret), Air from Water Music by Handel, La Rejouissance From Fireworks Music by Handel, Arioso (Bach)

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Wedding Ceremony Music:
Parents, Bridesmaids and Groomsmen ~ Hornpipe From Handel's Water Music
Ringbearer and Flower Girls ~ Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (Bach) - played on solo violin by niece
Bride ~ Canon in D (Pachelbel)
Recessional ~ Wedding March (Mendelssohn)

Sample Cocktail Hour Music:
Allegro Non Troppo (Popp), March in D Major (Bach), Presto in F Major (Telemann), Gavotte (Gossec), Waltz Op. 39 #8 (Tchaikovsky), Canzonetta (Mozart), Simple Gifts, Let Me Call You Sweetheart, All You Need is Love (Beatles)

Visit my Weddings page to learn more about how to make your wedding magical with live music.

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