Last weekend, I finally unveiled my new Liverpool RED piano. Yay! BLISS had very kindly invited me to perform in the VIP Lounge at the Liverpool Wedding Show. The piano looked amazing (see above) and guests really loved this new addition to the portable baby grand collection. I’ve had my other white baby grand piano for 15 years now. But this Liverpool red piano is very RED and very SHINY!
We can set the piano up practically anywhere. We transport it on its side with the legs off so it can fit through a single door. It is actually a mahogany piano body which houses a Nord Stage 2 keyboard. Once on site, set-up takes about 20 minutes. It is connected up to a Mackie PA system which we can also use for playing iPod music during performance breaks.
Repertoire can be anything from background (John Legend, Rat Pack, Bublé, current charts) to full-on party and singalong! There are thousand of songs in my playlists. For evening events, I also set up appropriate stage lighting. In addition, I always carry a spare mic or 2 and an iPad with a ton of lyrics ready for guest singers. Or how about some Live Karaoke?
a) you’re having a red colour scheme (maybe a ruby wedding),
b) you support the Reds,
c) you’re planning a Christmas party with red and white
d) you just want something original and different…
How about a guy in a hat singing and playing your favourite songs on a red piano? x
Last Wednesday, I had my corporate event pianist hat on at Hope Street Hotel in Liverpool. I had never played in the Residents’ Lounge before so I called in earlier to check out the piano. It’s a beautiful Boston Steinway grand piano. What a treat!
For an event pianist Liverpool offers a whole host of opportunities. It’s a very popular place for businesses to hold their conferences and events. Our hotels and conference venues offer superb facilities and excellent service.
Liverpool’s Hope Street Hotel is indeed on Hope Street about 100 yards from the Philharmonic Theatre. It is a popular wedding venue . But on this occasion, the business function was held in the Residents’ Lounge downstairs.
The event was being held by a pharmaceuticals company from London. They wanted some background music during dinner and then: PARTY!
The dinner went well and after some laid back sets it was time to start this party! Two “very committed” singers from the company team soon came over to join me. They wanted to sing a bit of live karaoke on the spare mic.
In no time at all, they gave us Champagne Supernova, Perfect Day, Delilah, Daydream Believer… Bring out the biscuits ’cause here comes the cheese! Great night!
This afternoon, I returned to the stunning Knowsley Hall to perform Elaine & Michael’s wedding. They had been searching for a Liverpool wedding pianist and a friend had given them my website details. I really appreciate it when past brides and grooms recommend me to others.
Due to the high winds, the team had to set up for the drinks reception inside the Hall rather than outside on the terrace. I set up the baby grand in the reception hall. As requested, I played instrumental When You Wish Upon A Star followed by Bella’s Lullaby as the newlyweds arrived at the venue.
For the next 2 hours or so I took requests and chatted during breaks. There were some familiar faces of couples who had also booked me to play at their weddings. It is lovely when you bump into couples a few years down the line and they now have young families.
As at previous Knowsley Hall wedding, the drinks reception lasted more like 2 hours so I played slightly longer sets. I had already set my piano keyboard up in the dining room ready for the wedding breakfast. So there was no problem moving from one area to the other. I had prepared everything ready for that seamless transition…
Once guests had taken their seats, I played in the new Mr & Mrs Walsh with their song: Marry You. Elaine & Michael had given me a list of requests including:
One Day Like This Wonderwall
I Just Haven’t Met You Yet That’s Amore
and plenty of others.
Guests were now enjoying their main course, so I put the iPod on and took my break. I had a quick main course myself near the bar. Delicious! Thank you very much!
For the final half hour or so over desserts and coffee, I went for the old Hey Jude rousing finale. I would like to thank my dancers (you know who you are!) and past groom Mr Steve McKenna for leading the singing and the arm waving. We ended the wedding breakfast on a real high note…
Congratulations to a lovely bride and groom wishing you every future happiness! xx
Kate & Kevin’s big day was finally here! As soon as they booked their wedding at the Isla Gladstone wedding entertainment was next on the list. They liked to book things well in advance, these two!
I had been looking forward to performing at the venue for a long time. It was a new venue for me and I had seen some stunning images. In addition, Liverpool weddings are always full of characters so you know you re going to have a top day.
By the time the big day arrived, I had 17 weddings in my diary for August. This was one of 6 on the run and it turned out to be the hottest day of the year. Luckily, my cousin Jonno was over from Canada to roadie for me. I haven’t laughed and sung that much in one day for a while!
It was a cracking day. The weather was amazing. Guests were either sunning themselves outside during the drinks reception or sitting on the A/C vents inside the venue… The sun felt hot outside but everybody was quite cool inside. I always drink lots of water but must have had more than 8 pints on this day.
As soon as everybody was sat down, Pickled Walnut brought out the lovely food. Guests were ready to party. The bride & groom’s list of favourite songs went down very well. I seem to have developed a “penchant” for finishing off my set with a hands-in-the-air sing along of Hey Jude. The guests certainly seemed to like it and they definitely knew the words!
So, Mr & Mrs Walsh have begun their married life together. Congratulations once again and I wish you all the best! xx
Steve and Katy got in touch last year regarding wedding entertainment for their Formby Hall wedding. They had seen me perform at their friends’ wedding at Thornton Manor in 2011.
For their own wedding, they wanted my white baby grand piano and vocals downstairs for the drinks reception. Then we were going to head upstairs to the Ambassador Suite for the wedding breakfast. I had set up a piano keyboard there beforehand.
As per usual, guests moved around the hotel during the drinks reception. Some went out to the terrace to enjoy the weather while others stayed inside.
But as soon as we moved upstairs, guest kicked off waving napkins for That’s Amore. The oldest singers ever gave us Hey Jude, Delilah, Imagine andmore… Finally, we belted out Shine for the Take That hardcore who had been leading the choruses.
We had a plan for a karaoke set downstairs after speeches following its success at the Thornton Manor wedding. However, we hadn’t counted on a Formby Hall wedding record two and a quarter hours of speeches!So, no karaoke…As a result, the team wanted everyone back upstairs to begin the evening function in less than 15 minutes…
Every wedding is different and Steve and Katy absolutely did it their way. I had a great time with them and their party of fun guests. The characters in the room guaranteed the party atmosphere. I’m sure they all had a great night. All the best to the new Mr & Mrs Pellow! x
Liverpool Playhouse celebrated 100 years of theatre yesterday with events throughout the day and a gala performance of “The Ladykillers” in the evening.
I set up as lounge pianist for attending guests at the drinks reception and again later at the aftershow party where I added some vocals…
“Ladykillers” was absolutely brilliant – very funny, a clever set and great performances by all actors. Everybody loved it and so there was a real atmosphere of celebration the aftershow party. I have to take my hat off to Flock of Seagulls Frank for an inspired singalong and thank Rowena, Amy, Sarah and the rest of the team for making it such a memorable night. Congratulations! And here’s to the next hundred…!!
On Friday, I performed at the annual dinner of the IIL at the Crowne Plaza, Liverpool. I was actually performing post dinner in the bar area with my white baby grand piano essentially providing background music white guests chatted and networked, taking a few requests and enjoying the occasional chat with passing guests.