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A String Of Great Ideas At Manor By The Lake, Cotswolds, with Tina Nicol, Wedding Coordinator and Lynette Webster from Capriccio String Quartet

How exactly does a String Quartet work at a Wedding at Manor By The Lake in The Cotswolds? We asked Tina Nicol, Wedding Coordinator and Lynette Webster from Capriccio String Quartet to join us for a round table chat about it all.

Listen to Tina and Lynette on the Wedding Espresso Awesome DIY Wedding Planning Podcast…


Tina Nicol, Weddings & Events Coordinator at Manor By The Lake, The Cotswolds

Lynette Webster, Capriccio String Quartet


James [00:00:05] Hi guys. Thanks for dropping in today. So for everybody out there that’s watching that does not know who these wonderful people are, I’m joined today by Lynnette Webster from Capriccio String Quartet and Tina Nicol, who is the Wedding Coordinator at Manor by The Lake. Now the super cool thing here is you guys know each other and Lynette you’re actually recommended by Manor by The Lake aren’t you?

Lynette [00:00:31] Yes.

We’re very fortunate to be recommended by Manor by The Lake. And actually we’re always recommending them too because it’s such a fabulous venue. 

James [00:00:40] Fantastic. So the subject that I wanted to tackle with you today. And I did spend a while coming up with this title but don’t beat me with a stick for it or anything. It’s a little bit cheesy.

So here we go, “A String of Great Ideas at Manor by The Lake”. 

Tina [00:00:59] Haha Brilliant! 

James [00:00:59] That’s a solid 5/10 if we’re honest. 

Tina [00:01:03] Yeah. 

James [00:01:04] OK cool, right, brilliant. But before we get stuck into that, what have you guys been up to? what’s new? what’s exciting? what’s happening at the moment? Anything in the pipeline you are looking forward to it? 

Lynette [00:01:16] Well we were at Manor by The Lake last night at one of their fabulous showcases. How many weeks? it’s every six weeks that you invite Brides and Grooms who have booked your venue?

Tina [00:01:28] Yes, every 6 weeks. 

Lynette [00:01:30]

And as one of their preferred suppliers we get the really lovely opportunity of playing for a couple of hours to potential Brides and Grooms. And it’s a lovely evening. Really really well setup and everything, we love going. 

James [00:01:44] That’s amazing. That event, that’s exclusively for couples who have booked Manor by The Lake, isn’t it Tina?

Tina [00:01:50] Yeah it is. We found that it is really beneficial for couples. It’s a little bit different and it’s to help them with their planning stages really. So they get to meet our preferred suppliers like Lynette. It’s fantastic, they actually perform on the evening so the customers get to actually see it and experience what they would experience for their wedding day, which is absolutely wonderful. And the great thing is with Lynnette and the team they can actually learn songs as well if they want to, if it’s not something that’s in Lynette’s repertoire. And I just think that’s extra special. And often the comments I get from couples are just great. 

Lynette [00:02:29] Oh Brilliant, well we have a great time because we have a list out like a jukebox because we have quite a massive list. And so we have a great evening of people coming in and choosing the numbers they want us to play for them. And it’s always quite surprising sometimes and things that we don’t often play. So we had a great time last night. 

James [00:02:48]

It’s such a good idea because I think kind of getting that experience of what it sounds like, what it looks like and how it feels actually at the venue. 

Tina/Lynette [00:02:58] Yes. 

James [00:02:58] That’s quite special, it’s so much more than a sample on a website or you know a social media post or something. It’s real and tangible so I think that’s such a great thing that you guys do, it’s a fantastic opportunity for Brides and Grooms. 

Lynette [00:03:12] Yeah it’s brilliantly set up, an absolutely fabulous evening for Brides and Grooms. Yeah. And equally enjoyable for us too. 

James [00:03:19] Cool. So sort of round that subject then, how does music (or live music in particular), how does that work at Manor by The Lake? Do you just want to walk us through the opportunities that are available and how you present it? 

Tina [00:03:34] Yeah I mean it’s endless really because couples have exclusive use of Manor by The Lake. What we do is we build every wedding with the couple. So endless options. I mean I guess it starts with the arrival of the guests, whilst they’re all assembling for the ceremony. Then of course the ceremony, often couples choose to get married actually at the Manor.

So there’s the outdoor ceremonies or an indoor ceremony option. So there’s the variation of options for the couple. Different spaces depending on their guest numbers.

Then through the drinks reception is a favourite time with a lot of couples and guests because they are all relaxing and having photos. And they’ve just got that wonderful music in the background. So that works particularly well. 

Tina [00:04:20] And then when they move over to have their meal, whether it’s a three course meal or something a little bit informal, just having something in the background. There’s so many elements through the day where they can incorporate music and it just works really, really well. And I know particularly, Lynette and the team work with the couples too, as I said bespoke to what they are looking for. So they actually get to choose what they have. So it’s the right tone, it’s bringing in a couple’s personalities which is awesome really. 

Lynette [00:04:46] And it’s such a lovely venue because there are really beautiful outdoor settings.  But if it does rain, the Maximilian Room inside is beautiful too.

And it’s just such a lovely venue to play at. And I have to say it’s our favourite, we love playing there and we are always well looked after. 

Tina [00:05:09] Oh good. 

James [00:05:10] That’s really good to hear. Is there… are there different styles of music Lynette at different points of the day that work better? Take us through the sets and how those work. 

Lynette [00:05:21] Well it depends on what kind of wedding people have. Quite often people just have modern all the way through their wedding. And we play whilst the guests are arriving. But sometimes we are asked to play classical as people are arriving and classical for the Bride to walk into, and then we break out into our things like Kashmir and Everlong for the drinks reception.

So we have such a wide variety of music we really can cater for every taste. And we do as Tina said, we can arrange songs especially for their day. 

James [00:05:59] Fantastic. So from the perspective of playing at Manor by The Lake then do you guys have a favourite style? Is there something that you think “yeah this works really well here”? 

Lynette [00:06:14] Oh gosh. I don’t know about that, but I know my favourite place to play is down on the garden. I’ve forgotten the name of it. What is it called again, Tina?

Tina [00:06:26] The Italian Garden. 

Lynette [00:06:26] Yeah The Italian Garden. It’s absolutely beautiful and we just love playing there.  As regards to music. No, no we just love playing anything. It’s all good fun. 

James [00:06:40] Fantastic. I know this is coming from the perspective of a very, very amateur musician (that’s me). Music is an intensely personal thing for me.

When we were filming weddings I found that certain venues lent themselves to particular styles. 

Lynette [00:07:00] Do you mean like Pride & Prejudice? 

James [00:07:00] You’ve got it! Everything has a tune. So would you say Manor by The Lake has a sound? I mean is it grandiose? is it intimate? is it romantic? is it exciting? 

Lynette [00:07:12] It’s a beautiful romantic venue, not overly ostentatious. It’s just a down to earth but beautiful venue. It’s just a perfect wedding venue in every way. It’s not too posh, but it’s not you know…

It’s not a run of the mill hotel. It’s a very, very special hotel and for your very bespoke wedding, it’s just the perfect venue, I think for so many Brides and Grooms. It’s got everything basically. 

James [00:07:52] Can we use the word boutiquey, Tina? 

Tina [00:07:52] Absolutely. 

James [00:07:52] So it has a boutiquey feel to it! 

Lynette [00:08:06] Boutique. Yeah. Perfect. Perfect. It is Lovely. 

James [00:08:11] Brilliant. I’ve got to ask you guys. Do you have a favourite piece of music? Maybe one that comes around regularly that’s played at Manor by The Lake that people tend to gravitate towards? Or is it literally every Wedding is different? 

Tina [00:08:21] A Thousand Years! 

Lynette [00:08:21] A Thousands Years is up there. We got asked to play that a lot last night. And Beauty and the Beast. 

James [00:08:34] Right. 

Lynette [00:08:35] Yeah. It’s an interesting title that one! 

James [00:08:37] For a wedding when you think about it. 

Lynette [00:08:40] Yeah. 

James [00:08:40] Which is which? 

Lynette [00:08:41] It’s beautiful, but yes! 

Tina [00:08:41] I think a lot of couples are now theming their weddings. 

We’ve seen the Disney theme coming in, so being able to do tracks like that, it works really well.

And you can straightaway learn the couples personalities. 

Lynette [00:09:00] Yeah definitely. We have Star Wars themes that are very popular, we played a couple of those last night and things like The Hobbit and Game of Thrones.  Game of Thrones we are always playing and that goes down very well in the drinks receptions, especially with all those fans who watch those programs. 

James [00:09:20] I’ve seen the whole of Game of Thrones. Are there love themes as well as just… my memory of Game of Thrones is War! It’s like fighting and battles. 

Lynette [00:09:31] It’s the main theme. 

James [00:09:35] Ah the main theme, like the titles, ah. 

Lynette [00:09:39] But it’s very difficult to say specific music because as you say, it’s such a boutique and special venue. I think couples can tailor their weddings very much for themselves. And Manor by The Lake really allows for that and that’s what makes it the special venue that it is. 

James [00:10:01] Awesome, I can’t get over… I love saying this… I get really excited about it.

I read in a book that live music makes people 12% more sociable. 

Lynette [00:10:15] Wow. 

James [00:10:15] That’s a crazy statistic. So is there anything you think (from your perspective), what do you think are the benefits of live music? 

Lynette [00:10:22] They can talk about the pieces, if it’s music that they recognise. 

James [00:10:27] A talking point! 

Lynette [00:10:27] And songs they recognise, and it sounds very different with a quartet playing the music. So if we are playing something like Everlong by The Foo Fighters, it’s not Everlong by the Foo Fighters. It’s Capriccio Quartet playing Everlong. And people sometimes are a bit taken aback, and I think that’s quite a topic of conversation.

And I know Game of Thrones we’ve been asked to play three times in one wedding reception once, because people like hearing things they know.

And I think it does. Yeah. People do talk about music don’t they Tina? I mean yeah, it is a talking point. 

Tina [00:11:00] Absolutely and I really think it brings that atmosphere together. 

Lynette [00:11:03] Yeah. 

Tina [00:11:04] Because you’ve got, particularly when photographs are happening,

you’ve got guests that are really interested in, and talking about what songs are coming up. And as you said, particularly ones they know. And it really creates that atmosphere. And I just love watching it when you’ve got people bobbing along to and I particularly like little ones when they’re dancing around to it. 

Lynette [00:11:22] Oh yes we’ve “Let it Go” from Disney, and “Oh My Goodness”. That goes down well with the children. And we’ve even got Baby Shark now. 

Tina [00:11:30] Oh dear. 

James [00:11:36] I’m trying to imagine that without the lyrics it’s… 

Lynette [00:11:39] An orchestral variation on Baby Shark. 

James [00:11:43] Do you jazz it up a little bit Lynette? 

Lynette [00:11:44] We do. 

James [00:11:44] Do you add a little bit of jazz, yeah? 

Lynette [00:11:49] So every age group is definitely catered for, and we do tend to look around our guests. If we haven’t got a very specific list, we will look around and see what people might like you know. Things like Come on Eileen and things like that, we’ve got as well. We’ve got everything. So it’s great fun. 

James [00:12:07] I think it kind of Segway’s really nicely into asking what do you guys particularly love about working together?

Tina [00:12:15] I think, it’s just, from my point of view, it’s the passion.

I think both of us are very passionate about creating the couple’s dream day. And I think from both of us that’s always been my highlight, and that’s why I’ve particularly loved working with Lynette and the team.

And they’re always so happy and accommodating. There are often times where we’re not really sure until the last minute whether we’re going to be inside or outside. You know, Lynette and everybody are so accommodating even though they’ve got their instruments and everything that they need to move with them. And to have that, it just makes it a lot more fun for the team. 

Lynette [00:12:55]

You’re a great team at Manor by The Lake. They are an absolutely fantastic and together team, you really notice the atmosphere there and the staff can never do too much to help.

There’s Ben who’s made us a cup of tea when we got slightly delayed in traffic. And he brought a cup of tea to us and it’s just that lovely team and the care that they not only take over us, but for over quite obviously every single wedding that they do. Tremendous care and concern, and it’s fantastic to work with such a fabulous team. 

James [00:13:29] It’s quite funny for me from an outsider’s perspective actually because obviously we’ve had a Q and A with both of you separately. I knew there was a synergy there and I think you’ve just kind of nailed it. And it’s that both of you come across as having this kind of limitless passion and energy for what you do.

And then we get you both together, and it’s like “wow look at it go”. So I can see it now and it’s fantastic that we’ve been able to kind of put that together and actually show people that if you get a team of people like that, your wedding’s just going to fly. 

Lynette [00:14:04] A good team. There’s nothing better than a good team. We’re a great team as the Quartet. We all are great friends and get on very well. And coming to a team of people at Manor by The Lake, it really is very obvious. It’s a fabulous team and they’re always so welcoming to us as well you know, and we’ve really got to know the venue, it’s lovely. 

James [00:14:27] Brilliant so just before we go guys. Is there anything in the pipeline that’s really exciting? anything coming up that you want to talk about?

Tina [00:14:35] Well we’ve got lots of weddings coming up that we’ve got Lynette and the team here, which we’re very excited about. And as I said, I know some of those that I’ve spoken to have got some fantastic themes. So there might be a few ones coming out the woodwork that Lynette and everyone will be performing at. 

Tina [00:14:56] Especially after last night! Which is great. So we’re very excited for that definitely.

James [00:15:02] Excellent. Well thank you so much guys for sparing the time with us today.

I’m so glad we’ve managed to capture some of that lightning in a bottle to show people. 

It’s just the best thing that’s happened today by a million miles. It’s incredible. So I’m so glad we had the chance to do that. And thank you again for sharing your expertise, your knowledge with everybody. 

Lynette [00:15:22] No worries and we’ll see you soon Tina! 

Tina [00:15:24] Thank you, yes, see you again! 

James [00:15:24] Cool, OK Guys thanks a lot, Bye for now.

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