Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Top secret. Diane's surprise.

Since joining Woapa 3 years ago I have met many wonderful people and made some good friends. Everyone in the singing group is enthusiastic and if asked would probably say that Wednesday evening, when we rehearse, is the highlight of their week. I certainly would. But I think it's fair to say that there's one member of the choir who stands out as being the most enthusiastic.

Diane, (on the right), with her friend and wedding coordinator, Deryn.
This lady missed out on attending last years Woapa day in August because she was in Scotland, but she hurried home on the Sunday to be back in Witney to watch the evening's performance. Then, vexed at having missed out on the day, she requested that the date for the 2014 Woapa day be announced before Christmas in order that she could arrange her holidays to be there. Not only did she make it this year, but she was one of the attendees who entered fully into the spirit of the 80's theme by dressing up.

But there's one particular incident which happened on Saturday 27th September 2014, that definitely qualifies her for title of 'Woapa's most enthusiastic fan'. On this day Diane Iverson married Steve Mullinger and, at her request, the choir performed at the evening reception.

Earlier in the year during a break in singing, Brian announced that Diane had asked if the choir could perform at her wedding. she requested that we perform 2 of our mash ups that were her favourites. A thousand years/Just give me a reason and Venus/Locomotion. That was the plan, but on the night we had a surprise for Diane.

Earlier in the year Diane and Steve had gone on holiday for 2 weeks, which meant that Diane missed 2 choir practises. The first week she was away, we were all issued with a 'Top secret' copy of the words to Angels by Robbie Williams, which Diane's friend, Deryn, also an enthusiastic choir member, said was a particular favourite of Diane's. We had only 2 weeks to practice it, harmonies and all. But being the consummate professionals we are, that didn't faze us, much. Everyone in the choir, except Diane, was emailed a copy of the backing track to enable them to practice at home.

Unfortunately we had the summer holiday break between then and the wedding and a few of the choir members were beginning to panic about remembering their parts. But Diane unwittingly obliged by not being able to attend the last rehearsal before the big day, allowing us to have one last practice.

Those of us who were able to attend, were asked to arrive at 7.30pm, ready to perform at 8.15. but when we arrived the speeches had only just begun and we were told that our performance would be delayed by about an hour. Fortunately, this gave us time to go to the room upstairs, where the ceremony had taken place, and have one final practice.

Diane and Steve's reaction to choir singing angels.
At last the time arrived. We gathered in front of the table where the DJ had set up his decks ready for the disco to follow. The blushing bride took her place with her fellow 'lows' and the performance began. Both mash ups were greeted by rapturous applause, with some guests even dancing along to the Locomotion. Diane then stepped forward to thank us, but instead she and her new husband, Steve were asked to sit down on 2 chairs that had been placed directly in front of the choir. Brian stepped forward and explained to the guests that unknown to Diane we had been practising another song and then the music started. As we began singing, Brian once again stepped forward, only this time he was wearing a Robbie Williams mask. Diane's face was a picture. As we sang, she shook her head in disbelief. Before we'd started singing, Steve had handed her a tissue and this was put to good use.

Mr and Mrs Mullinger.
After we'd finished Diane stood up and told the audience that she was a self confessed control freak, who didn't like surprises, but she was more than delighted with this one. Both Diane and Steve showed their appreciation, by hugging each of the choir members. Steve told us that when we were singing Angels, Diane cried for the first time that day.

I'm sure that I'm speaking for all of the Woapa members who sang that night when I say what an honour and a privilege it was to be there and sing for Diane and Steve on their special day and we wish with all the best for their future together.

Unfortunately, I don't have a video of us singing  Angels, but I do have one of the first Mash up, A thousand years/Just give me a reason. I hope Diane enjoys this blog about a part of her memories of her special day.

Video Isabel's own.

Photo's of Diane from her Facebook timeline
Photo of Diane and Steve's surprise courtesy of Joy Aitman. 

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