I’ve done Indian weddings before but never one like this! What an event! I spent two nights with the wonderful families of Lisa Kelly and Vamsee Neerukonda. Friday, April 7th we gathered at the Taj for a traditional Mendhi party, during which guests can get henna tattoos, eat, drink and dance. I snapped a photo with my phone of one of the henna artists hard at work! Traditional Indian cuisine was served at the Mendhi party and the hosts were so gracious, they insisted that I try some! Lisa, the bride, wasn’t expecting much dancing but a great dance party did break out later in the night and it was encouraging foreshadowing for what the wedding itself had in store.
Hindi weddings are very different from American weddings. Hindi weddings are much more ceremonial. The bride and groom are considered a type of royalty, even having stages and thrones to sit on throughout portions of the event. I captured a couple related images to show you what I’m talking about. The wedding was in the Great Room of The State Room, where I’ve worked many, many times. Huge shout out to Kristen Stachnik and her team for keeping things moving and giving the guests maximum time on the dance floor. The color and decor at this wedding, as well as all the Indian weddings I’ve done, really stands out. I also provided uplighting for the event and the pink and purple that Lisa chose blended perfectly with the flowers (provided by Madison Floral) and draperies used to the ceremonies. A short Christian ceremony with Lisa’s childhood pastor gave way to a traditional Hindi ceremony which lasted almost an hour. I found myself very much interested in all the meaningful steps it took for them to become husband and wife. The Christian and Hindi clergy then came together at the end to pronounce them married, which I thought was a particularly nice touch.
Photographer Melissa Robotti captured the events of both evenings beautifully, creating memories that will last for not only the couple and their guests, but for me as well!