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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

What a Capitol Idea!

About two weeks ago, Alex and I went to The Capitol Theatre to see what it was like and to check pricing for having our wedding there. I can describe the place in three letters: O.M.G! I used to live in Maryville and the theatre is on one of the main roads, Broadway Ave (could there be a better street for a theatre?) so I've driven by it numerous times. I had never really looked at it though. The outside, while definitely capturing that 1920s feel, does not due justice to the theatre itself. (By the way, I know I'm spelling it "theatre" instead of "theater." That's how it's spelled in their name and that's how I will spell it throughout this blog.)

Walking into the lobby, you see the art all over the walls, the splashes of red throughout, and you just get this excitement in your stomach, like you just know you're stepping back in time and something magical is before you. Once you're inside, the outside world no longer exists. You are somewhere else and completely immersed in what you see.

While in the lobby, Debbie, the wonderfully sweet and gracious event coordinator of The Capitol, told us a little about the history of the theatre. We were shown The Capitol Coffee Shop and were told that it would be open to our guests on our wedding night. She let us know that there was a woman's area upstairs and a man-cave downstairs for getting ready. There was a lovely table right outside the doors to the theatre that she said was often used for gifts.

Throughout all this, the theatre doors had been shut. I swear, every step closer we got the more the excitement and the anticipation grew within me. I had seen pictures, but I just knew it was going to be something different to see it in person. Then it was time. Debbie reached for the door handle and as she pulled the door open said, "Welcome to The Capitol."

While planning this wedding I have found something to be true on numerous occasions. No matter what you're looking for, be it venue, cake, dress, or centerpieces, you will hem and haw over dozens of options and you'll become convinced you'll never be able to make a decision. Then, you will see THE dress, THE cake, and you will just know because your breath will be taken away. It happened for me when I walked into The Capitol Theatre.

The walls are draped in lush, red curtains, silver topped tables with black, comfy-looking chairs were placed along the middle and bottom tier, the stage ahead had the same velvety red curtains covering it. Across the curtains, written in lighting was, "Welcome, (my name) and Alex." On either side of the stage were large monitors, each displaying the same welcome message. The top tier, where we stood, had tables for the buffet, cake, and drinks, and with the same silver tops as the dining tables.

Debbie introduced us to the DJ and for the life of me I can't remember his name. I want to say it started with an "E," maybe Ethan or Evan. Then again, I was convinced that the song I was trying to think of yesterday had "Black" in the title. Other than that all I knew was that Led Zeppelin was the artist. Turned out the title was "D'yer Mak'er" so I could be way off on his name.

Anyways, he was going to give us a demo of what all he could do with the sounds, lights, and video. We took a seat in the middle tier and the show began. The lights dimmed and over the amazingly clear sound system came the opening notes to Etta James's "At Last." The curtains opened to display the twinkling starlight screen that would be the backdrop for our ceremony. A disco ball began to slowly twirl, casting little sparkles all over the theatre and soft blue lights covered the dance floor . I actually had tears well in my eyes. It was so beautiful and it was so easy to imagine us there on the floor, in our wedding attire, friends and family smiling upon us as we danced.

The the music slowly transitioned. The monitors came alive with the image of a man on a stage. The theatre's 30' movie screen came down and the image was there, as well. I realized the song was "Sway" and the man on the screen was Michael Buble. I am a huge fan of his songs and "Sway" is a song we've been considering for our first dance. The dance floor lit up with pink lights and multi-colored party lights displayed glowing images on the dance floor and the walls. More songs played and we saw a dazzling display of multi-colored lights, flood lighting, starlights, and even laser images being drawn on the ceiling. I was in awe.

The last song was "Time of My Life" and it was played to romantic scenes from a black and white movie. "Congratulations, (my name) and Alex" went scrolling across the screen, written by a green laser light. The curtains began to close and the onscreen couple were seen dancing on the red curtains. The scene faded with the music and the lights came back up. We were sold.

And the tour wasn't over!

From there, Debbie took us down to the bottom tier, the dance floor and explained to us how the ceremony usually takes place, where our attendants and we would enter. Next location was downstairs in the man-cave.

Wow! She said it wasn't unheard of for men to not want to leave the man-cave for the wedding above. I can see why. There were two poker tables, a pool table, a dart board, and a board room style table and chairs. All that was missing was a 60" TV on the wall.

From the man-cave in the basement, we headed to the top floor to see the bridal balcony. While not quite as impressive as the man-cave, it was still lovely. The walls were black except for red curtains that hung around a smaller version of their huge silver screen. There were over stuffed couches and chairs in red covers placed about. Two windows over looked the theatre below so if I wanted I could see people as they were getting seated. It was lovely.

We headed back downstairs and discussed numbers which, while very reasonable, is more than we have. I'm putting my car up for sale though so hopefully that will give us more than enough for our wedding. I cannot imagine having it anywhere else now.

The total for the venue and food was about $1500 more than the venue & food we had originally chose. However, the original venue was just that, just venue and food, nothing else. We still needed a lighting person and a DJ, and those alone would hit the $1500 mark. I also needed chair covers and sashes, tablecloths, centerpieces, people to set it all up, people to take it all down. Having all those costs included in one price made it a steal, especially since it stole our hearts.

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