A dark, rainy wedding day is not what most people imagine when they imagine a wedding in Sicily. But who says it can’t be the most romantic thing ever? The bride, Nicole, is a judge by day and a rockstar (literally) by night. She was supposed to marry her beloved Scott, whom she met when he became the drummer of her band, in the Piazza of one of her favorite towns in Sicily. Mother Nature, however, had other plans… the torrential rain did not dampen the smiles or the spirits of this musically talented couple, who scurried under the beckoning umbrellas of a nearby cafe where their friends – and the cafe’s patrons – looked on as Nicole walked down the “aisle.” Despite getting married thousands of miles from her home in Ohio, Nicole’s day was full of so many beautiful, meaningful, and personal touches… and of course, lots of music!
Two Rockstars Wed in Catania’s Town Square
Nicole is a rock star, literally. And as if that weren’t cool enough, by day she is a judge in Ohio! She met Scott when he became the drummer of her band, Arctic Clam. Each year they stage an annual benefit concert called Acoustics for Autism where they perform with artists such as Joan Jett, The Roots, and George Clinton to support their organization “Project I Am” which raises money to help children living with Autism Spectrum Disorders. It is an endeavor that is predicated on community support… And community is exactly what came together when they got married… thousands of miles away in Catania, Sicily.
Nicole’s relationship with Catania goes back nearly a decade when she befriended the man who would introduce her to this special place. Giuseppe became like a brother to her, and she returned to Catania every couple of years to visit her growing group of friends there. Scott loved the idea of getting married in Italy and fully supported Nicole’s dream of a wedding in Sicily. And whilst their initial plan was to get married in front of St. Peter’s Basilica, ultimately the town square of Catania proved to be their ideal destination full of music and community spirit.
Special, personal touches wove throughout their wedding day. Nicole brought a hand-written note, passed down through the generations, that had been written by her grandfather to her grandmother asking “will you engage yourself to me.” As she was dressing for the ceremony, Nicole opened a special gift from all of her friends who could not attend the ceremony. It was a charm bracelet on which each friend had included a charm that represented her connection to Nicole. The planned location of the ceremony, the Piazza del Duomo, is graced by a large fountain with an elephant on top of it. In ancient times, the locals revered an elephant said to possess magical powers, among them the ability to predict the eruption of Mt. Etna. Before the ceremony, the rings were photographed around a small elephant statue in honor of this local symbolism.
As the time for the ceremony approached, the threat of heavy rains and severe flood warnings jeopardized Nicole and Scott’s plans. They kept waiting to see if the weather would clear, but the skies were ominous. Minutes before the rain poured down, the owners of the Ristorante Caffe del Piazza beckoned them. They cleared tables to make room for Nicole, Scott, and their 25 guests to stand under the umbrellas of the cafe. Grasping the bouquet of flowers arranged by Giuseppe with one hand and his hand with the other, Nicole walked down the “aisle” to a beaming Scott. Their ceremony was presided over by another Sicilian friend and witnessed by not only their guests, but the cafe patrons as well!
After snapping some photos in the cafe, the whole party walked two blocks to the restaurant Nievski where in a private room upstairs they enjoyed a feast of local fare. In addition to charcuterie, calamari and dishes of local, fresh pasta, they dined on Sicilian specialties such as arancini and cannolis. To close out the evening, Nicole, Scott and their friends picked up their instruments to play and harmonize in celebration of an unpredictable yet thoroughly unique and memorable wedding in Sicily.
Photography – Andrejka Photography