13 Reviews for The House of Cards Music, featuring The Ariel Consort Chamber Ensemble
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My now husband and I knew we didn't want to have a traditional wedding march played at our ceremony. Instead, we really loved the sound of Sufjan Stevens' "Chicago," which also was a song that held a special meaning to both of us. So in finding the perfect ceremony musicians we wanted to find someone who would be willing to create an instrumental arrangement for us, who could do it well, and also a group that was within our budget! We were both so incredibly fortunate to come across Jen Bernard at House of Cards Music who helped bring this vision to life for us. She has a team of experts working with her and ultimately put together a trio of string musicians that are amidst Portland's best - this included the concertmaster for the Oregon Symphony (the first chair violinist!) and one of the cellists from the Portland Opera Orchestra! We knew we were in good hands.
On the day of the ceremony we heard their rendition of "Chicago" for the first time moments before walking down the aisle and it just brought tears to my eyes. They captured the melody so perfectly and created this incredible build up before I began to walk down the aisle. After the fact I had told my wedding planner and Jen that I so wished we had someone film that moment for us because it was far too brief, but those seconds were made unforgettable in large part due to the gorgeous and powerful melody being played in the background - it made that moment magical.
I could not recommend working with House of Cards Music enough - they were professional, trustworthy, incredibly responsive, and they listened to our wants/needs and helped bring our vision to life. What an incredibly talented group of musicians - I have such an immense gratitude for each of them and could not have imagined my ceremony without them.
Thank you so much for this wonderful review, Sharen. It was a pleasure customizing this piece for you, as a lover of indie folk music myself. So thrilled to hear that the string trio brought it to life perfectly. I so appreciate you taking the time to write this review. Cheers!
Jen who runs the business is very quick to respond or provides many musical options. Plan your music ahead of time so she can best help find the music you are looking for. Her musicians are excellent and made my ceremony music very special.
House of Cards did a fantastic job playing at our wedding & reception! Jen worked closely with us to make sure we got what we wanted, and was very responsive to our email inquiries. All of our guests had a great time and loved the music!
Thanks so much for such a sweet review. It was a genuine pleasure playing for you and Carrie. All us musicians exchanged knowing looks as your guests started coming in.....this is a SCI FI wedding and it's going to be very cool. I loved the Star Trek essences within the ceremony....ha! Hope you guys had a blast in the tropics. Thanks again, Jen
Excellent music, played by excellent musicians who know and understand music. The quality of the sound and arrangements of songs were top notch. Every single guest at our wedding commented and complemented on the wonderful work this group did. We could not have asked for better! Thank you Jen!
Jen Bernard with House of Cards Music was fantastic! They played exactly what we asked for and even provided a last minute request to include the musical talents of my family in our ceremony. Everyone commented on the beautiful music provided by Jen and her trio of musicians. So easy to work with too...we planned our destination wedding without a rehearsal and it couldn't have been more lovely! Thank you Jen!'
Dear Mary and Rich,
You were DREAM clients.....it means so much to work with people who love music as much as we do, and who appreciate its magic. Best of life to both of you, and thank you again for having us!
When we originally started looking into musicians for our wedding, our plan was to have one guitarist play for the ceremony only. We discovered House of Cards and Collage Trio during this search and decided to add a few more musicians, and have them also play during a cocktail hour and dinner. The three musicians were outstanding and the compliments we received from guests made us really happy with our decisions. The arrangement was a guitar, cello and flute/saxophone, and the music selection ranged from classical during the ceremony, contemporary during the cocktail hour, to jazz during dinner, and they were exceptional playing all those genres.
If I had to pick a few of the best reasons to choose Collage Trio to provide music at an event, I would go with customizable instrument and music selections, great advice for building the music plan, classiness, outstanding performance, and versitility (it rained on our wedding day and we had to make a lot of last minute changes). I’m not sure when we’ll have the opportunity to have them play at another event, but they will be our first choice when we do.
A million thanks for such a glowing review, Ben! It was so much fun working you you, and I sincerely appreciate your kind words.
Working with The House of Cards to craft the music for our wedding was a total DREAM! Jen Bernard was over-the-top helpful in all aspects of the creative, communication and planning phases of the process. My husband and I had special ideas of including a variety of types of instruments and music styles to fit each phase of the wedding. We wanted an accordion player to welcome guests in an wandering Italian player sort of way. We wanted elegant and romantic music for the ceremony including a cello, classical guitar and violin. And we wanted the famous Pete Krebs and his swing band to play during our reception for a unique and danceable night. Jen was so responsive to every custom request, giving us feedback and amazing recommendations for songs and instruments along the way. We requested a trumpet player at the last minute and she delivered! The entire day and evening was magical and the music totally created the most personalized, loving, elegant, old world Euro feeling we dreamed about. Thank you House of Cards and Jen Bernard. I would recommend you to everyone for every event!
Beth! You are such a goddess for posting this rave review. Can't thank you enough for the kind words and appreciation!
Loved LOVED these ladies - wow did they do a great job! They played immediately before and after my ceremony and it was lovely. They have an enormous repertoire to choose from if you don't want "the usual" (though they know that stuff too, of course!) - I myself wanted something a little bit different than Canon in D and they delivered! A beautiful traditional Irish piece for me to walk down the aisle (my husband has Irish roots), a quirky French piece for our recessional (we fell in love in Paris) - great great ladies, hire them! They'll do a fabulous job.
Can't thank you enough for the rave review! It was a sincere pleasure playing for you, and we LOVED integrating those folk tunes into your program. Congrats to you both!
The House of Cards Music
I love the Portland music scene, and when we were planning our wedding, my (now) wife and I wanted to have music from someone we had enjoyed seeing perform in Portland. One of our favorite local bands, The Stolen Sweets, had EXACTLY the kind of vibe, energy, and sound that we wanted for our vintage-themed wedding: hot, Twenties-to-Forties jazz with tight vocal harmonies and swinging guitar and bass instrumentals. We had enjoyed a number of their performances at cool Portland venues such as The Secret Society and the Alberta Rose Theater, and we were really hoping to get musicians of their quality and professionalism at our wedding.
We were delighted when The House of Cards Music was able to connect us with The Stolen Sweets. House of Cards principal Jen Bernard really simplified the process of selecting the length and content of our concert -- which is really what our reception turned into! We went for a two-hour set (which was very reasonable), and better still, Jen paved the way for us to incorporate some additional special features into the performance. My lovely bride wanted me to sing "Nessun Dorma" to her, and while Puccini was a far cry from the genre of most of the Sweets' oeuvre (they specialize in the Boswell Sisters, Cab Calloway, and Duke Ellington classics, with the occasional hint of Hot Fives and Hot Sevens), Jen was able not only to get a magnificent guitar backup for my solo, but also to transpose the song from its original key (G) into one more suited to my baritone voice (C).
Our guests LOVED the music, and thought it was SO FAR beyond typical "wedding musicians" that they were flabbergasted for the entire weekend. It would have been a lovely wedding even without them, but the music provided by the House of Cards made this a genuinely epic experience.
All in all, I wouldn't hesitate to book through House of Cards again. I don't expect to get married again any time soon, but perhaps for an upcoming anniversary or birthday party?
I can't thank you enough for your effusive and eloquent review! It was a sincere pleasure being part of your celebration, and we felt more like honored guests than the hired band. We are friends for life!
Cheers to you and your lovely bride Julie!
We had a great experience working with Jen, she was wonderfully responsive and full of insightful questions that helped us to come up a clear vision of exactly what we wanted. There was a perfect balance and use of The Ariel Consort Chamber Ensemble for our wedding ceremony and then kicking things up a notch with The Pete Krebs Trio for after dinner dancing. If I could change anything it would have been booking them for a longer period of time, we had no idea how late into the night we would want to dance and enjoy them!
My sister is getting married this year and we couldn't recommend them highly enough!
Can't thank you enough for this sweet review! We had such a pleasure playing for you, and absolutely loved the beauty of your Alpine enclave. We wish we could have stayed all night too. Best,
Jen and Pete
Apparently the cue for when I walked down the aisle was somehow missed so there was some disruption there, but everything else was fabulous. Our guests really enjoyed the music.
Hi Ashley. It was a pleasure playing for your wedding. What a beautiful day it was!
I'm sorry to see your comment about the processional cue being missed. As I recall, you started walking before we had a chance to change to your special music, and we scrambled to change pieces ASAP. Nerves can definitely get the best of an eager bride..... :) We did our best to adapt to the situation in the moment.
I would really hate for our prospective clients to think that we're insensitive to these crucial processional moments, since it's really what we do best.
All said, we truly appreciate your business, and it's ALWAYS a pleasure working with the fine gals at Soiree.
Best to you!
The House of Cards Music
Working with House of Cards was everything I hoped it would be, being a busy, and very particular bride. Our wedding was being planned in a very short timeframe, and Jen Bernard at House of Cards was able to find us the perfect music for our ceremony - The Ariel Consort, who was beautiful and amazing in our church - plus we were able to book The Pete Krebs Trio for our reception at the same time!! Jen was wonderful to work with, responded very quickly, and was very organized. All details were thought about and handled - right down to the exact song requests I wanted to hear for both church and reception music. Jen even went above and beyond helping me find a combination with the Pete Krebs Trio that fit our budget for the amount of time we wanted to have them play .. Trio for background music at dinner, couples and father/daughter dance and picked it up by adding horns to the Trio for the dancing hour!
Plus juggling so many vendors while planning a wedding is hard enough, so it's so nice to be able to book the whole day's talent at one time with ONE vendor - The House of Cards. I was impressed by the variety of artists and styles they represent. I'd highly recommend working with House of Cards for ANY of your music needs on your special day - you won't be disappointed. The talent of the musicians is top-notch, and the booking process was a piece of cake!
I cannot say enough praise for Jen Bernard, the Ariel Consort, and the Stolen Sweets. I had so many special requests, and they met each one with enthusiasm. Planning a wedding is probably the most stressful thing I have ever done, but working with an organized and responsive vendor makes all the difference. During the ceremony, I wanted to have Jen sing "You Belong To Me" by Patsy Cline. She performed the song beautifully, and it brought tears to my eyes. Also during the ceremony, my dad surprised me with a Rascal Flatts song that he had Jen learn. I was so touched by his spontaneity , as well as Jen's willingness to fulfill his request.
For the reception, the Stolen Sweets played two sets of fantastic swing-Jazz music that had everyone on their feet. I have always been a big fan of the Sweets, so having them take my reception up a notch was icing on the cake. After they were finished, we were allowed to use their equipment to play a set list that I had compiled.
Music was a very important aspect to my wedding. When the Ariel Consort performed "La Vie en Rose" while my father and I walked down the aisle, I felt like I was in a dream. I highly recommend their services!
Can't thank you enough for this lovely review. We had such a wonderful time performing for your celebration, and your entire family is so kind-hearted. What an honor to be part of the festivities! Not to mention, we got flashed by an enthusiastic party-goer who requested Madonna from a 1930s swing band! Only in Portland!