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The Henna

Henna music London

The Henna

Last summer, as the lockdown restrictions were eased, we were invited to play at 2 Iraqi/Jewish Weddings that included having a Henna as part of the celebrations.

The Henna is a pre-wedding ceremony performed at Mizrahi and Sephardi Jewish Weddings from the Middle East and North Africa, from Iraq to Morocco. The bride and groom are seated on thrones where they are presented with gifts – usually cakes and sweets, and have henna or lokum (Turkish delight) placed on their fingers.

Wedding of Sara and Josh

Sara and Josh chose Ham Polo Club, Richmond, for their wedding – a lovely venue not far from London by the River Thames, with polo horses galloping around us. The party took place just after “opening up” in late June and was the first full Jewish wedding that Shir performed at in 2021.
It was great to be back!

The Henna followed the Chuppah and was a colourful and vibrant celebration with dancing,
singing and lots of “loolooloo-ing”!

Ronen and Steve led the bride and groom to the Henna stage with Darbukas and singing,
which morphed into the chosen Mizrahi music for the ceremony.

“We just wanted to thank you for all the ruach you brought to our wedding. Working, planning and organizing with you felt so seamless and easy because you were so passionate about your work and what you were doing.
We felt honoured to be your first wedding after COVID and you didn’t disappoint! 
At the event itself, you managed to feel the room perfectly and got everyone of all ages up and dancing.
Your music was unbelievably versatile which was useful for a Sephardi-Ashki couple like us!
You played a beautiful chuppah, a lively Iraqi Henna, Simcha music and more!

We really can’t thank you enough for the atmosphere you created and the amazing time you gave us and all of our guests.” 

It was a pleasure – we loved every minute.
Mabruk – Mazal Tov

Photos by Kate Swerdlow 

Wedding of Alissia and Daniel

Alissia and Daniel’s Iraqi/Jewish Wedding was at the stunning Euridge Manor near Bath, an amazing Italianesque estate overlooking the rolling hills of Somerset.
The Henna took place during the party, after dinner, with Ronen and Steve on Darbukas leading the couple down from the dinner hall (they had changed into more traditional clothing), and onto the lawn where the Mizrahi dancing took place.
Alissia’s Great Uncle Joseph, who led a Jewish dance band in Baghdad in years gone by, joined us to sing some Iraqi favourites – Jina Jina, Ya’aris Mabruk, Simcha Gedola Halaila (in Arabic!)

“Shir Music were wonderful and such an exciting part of our wedding.
It was so special to have the songs that meant the most to us and classical Henna music.

Ivor went above and beyond to help us with various elements before the wedding day and give us the time to discuss the music on many occasions to help us feel at ease.
Thank you for everything! We wish we could do it all over again!”

So do we – it was a magical day!
Mazal Tov – Mabruk

Photos by Lucy Birkhead

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