To Plan or Not to Plan? This is the wedding celebration question!

Posted by Joel Abramson March 31, 2010 Categories: Wedding discussion

American vs. Israeli weddings

hai-and-tzipiBeing an “international performer,” I can’t help but notice the difference between American and Israeli (Jewish) wedding celebrations.   The differences are clearly visible.  To our good fortune, we (my wife Lori and I) have been invited to many Israeli weddings.  Moreover, I have performed for many Israeli families in the States as well.   So how do the two different cultures celebrate?  Among several things that stand out, one big difference is the nature of planning, or absence thereof.

In America, we plan.  Actually, I enjoy that.  When we sit with our clients, we go through a thorough process whereby we review all of the physical logistics and then we choreograph how the event will proceed.  (Ceremony music, cocktail hour, Hora, toasts, first dance, bouquet toss, music, etc.)  Not that we are rigid or inflexible rather, we always want to have a plan going in so we feel prepared.  You’ve heard the definition of life:  Life is what happens to you while you are planning! Moreover, most of our clients prefer it that way.  However, we always maintain entertainer veto power as spontaneity is a beautiful thing at a celebration.  In fact, we count on that.   All celebrations eventually take on a life of their own and in the end, that’s what defines the success of the event.    However, to reduce stress for our clients and our entertainers, planning is the professional way to go.  Our events reflect good planning and are therefore successful.

Now how does that relate to Israeli celebrations? Well, planning is the last on the priority list.  Israelis seem to plan for and rely on spontaneity.    I recall for one Israeli couple for which I was their DJ, I suggested to get together to plan their wedding celebration.  They basically refused.     So we “compromised.”  I came in an hour earlier than I normally would have to talk with the caterer before their wedding celebration.   Everybody was OK with that!    The event indeed was  spontaneous, interwoven with twists and turns that made for a most memorable and enjoyable evening.

So what do we conclude from this?   To plan or not to plan?     Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of too much planning or not enough planning? You decide and we’ll accommodate.   We just want you to be happy!

Joel Abramson Entertainment & Productions has been providing live music and DJs for Bay Area Jewish Weddings in Northern California since 1994.

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