Happy August, everyone! We’re bringing the celebration of Erica and Ricky’s marriage to you during the next couple of weeks. As wedding planners based in Los Angeles, we’re thrilled to celebrate diversity and various cultures; here, we were excited to partake in Indian wedding traditions, beginning with the Sangeet.
What is a Sangeet? Well, it’s kind of like a rehearsal dinner on the night before a traditional American wedding, except it’s more like a party! Imagine a grand ballroom draped in flowing fabrics in fuchsia, gold, and teal. Scattered around dining tables are lounge areas occupied with plush pillows. Here, at the Laguna Cliffs Mariott in Dana Point, is where the festivities began for Erica and Ricky.
As family and friends arrived, they were welcomed to lively music and delicious food and drinks. Mehndi, or henna, artists were available to create mini-masterpieces. Mehndi is a natural, herbal body art using a paste that stains the skin a dark brown. You may have seen these intricate designs especially on hands, many resembling floral patterns with swirls and dots.
After guests took their seats, they were welcomed with speeches from family members, introducing the upcoming performances of song and dance. This is the heart of the Sangeet. There were three fun, energetic medleys performed by family and friends from either Erica or Ricky’s side. Those watching certainly participated too, by singing and clapping along. The final performance was followed by open dance in Bollywood or Bhangra fashion. The dholi, or drummer, joined on the floor to provide a strong beat.
Next were the Garba and Raas, both traditional folk dances. The Raas is danced with colorful sticks called dandiya. Trust us–these folks like to dance! We like to think everyone slept well after this lively evening.
We’re just scratching the surface here! Come back next week when we’ll feature Erica and Ricky’s actual wedding day!
Photos | Callaway Gable Studios
Venue | Laguna Cliffs Marriott
DJ + Lighting | DJ Karan Entertainment
Hair + Makeup + Mehndi | Bridal by Nisha
Florals + Rentals | Ethnic Essence
Catering | Natraj Indian Restaurants and Catering
Photo + Video | Lisa Marie Photographie
Specialty Food | Namaste Bites
Photo Booth | High Time Photo Booth