philadelphia wedding

Reading Terminal Market wedding: Ally and Andrew by Ryan Brenizer

We have always said that the highest compliment we can give a wedding is that we would have loved to attend even if we weren’t photographing that — well, Ally and Andrew’s wedding was all of that and a bit more, since it was in a venue we would love to explore even when there isn’t a wedding there!

The wedding was in the culinary cornucopia of Philadelphia’s Reading Terminal Market, and it took full advantage of the numerous stalls and marketplaces, as well as a dance floor in the middle of a usually-crowded terminal. To balance the industrial feel of the reception, the ceremony was in the gorgeous and historic Masonic Temple Library and Museum.

We knew from the engagement shoot how much fun this would be — it was sometimes hard to find pictures of them not laughing together, enjoying each other’s and their friends’ raucous energy. It did not disappoint from beginning to end, and we smile just looking back.

Kimmel Center Wedding: Dana and Zal by Ryan Brenizer

Speaking as a groom about to plan his own wedding: Zal, you’re making it harder for the rest of us. First, the proposal: Both Dana and Zal are actors, knowing that Dana’s favorite movie was “Pretty Woman,” he faked an audition for her to go try out — but when she got there, all she found was that she had been put in the right place for Zal to come up, sticking out a limo a la Richard Gere. I knew right from this description that they were going to have a heck of a wedding, but this is only the beginning. Zal had been a member of the Broadway Boys performance group, and Dana knew that he had convinced them to perform at the reception … but not that he was rehearsed and ready to perform a few song with them. At every moment this sense of whimsy and delight at marrying Dana was written in exclamation points on his face, and in every aspect of planning. I got more involved in the planning of the day than usual, helping not just with the schedule and some of the other vendor recommendations (such as our pal Paul Hairston on video) but also things like lighting design, and loved it because both of their excitement even carried through the logistics.

It doesn’t hurt that Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center is a beautiful, dramatic place to hold a wedding. It’s also big. Really big. We were wearing fitness bands that day, and I’m glad, since both Tatiana Breslow and I hit all-time records. We’d love to shoot there again for that cardiovascular fitness, if not for the beauty.