When Shannon O’Brien and Matt Roan were en route to their second date in 2007, R&B singer Ginuwine’s song “Differences” came on the radio. Roan teased that the tune would play during the first dance at his wedding — O’Brien would have to accept this or exit the car. “I was like, ‘Okay, I guess I’ll stay,’ ” laughs O’Brien.
Five years later, O’Brien made good on her promise. The duo tied the knot in a traditional Catholic ceremony at Holy Family Church (1080 W. Roosevelt), where the Chicago Children’s Choir, under the direction of Josephine Lee, performed a rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” as the couple exited the church. “We cried every time they sang,” says O’Brien. Later, in front of 200 guests at the Stan Mansion (2408 N. Kedzie), the pair finally danced to “Differences.” “It was the best first dance ever,” says the groom. Roan, a DJ, and O’Brien, a makeup artist, asked their multi-talented friends to contribute to the celebration: Mixologist Paul McGee crafted a signature Better Half cocktail — a blush colored Aperol margarita — and visual artist James McDermott constructed a large tinsel chandelier designed by the bride. “It was 14 feet tall, and the guests danced under it all night,” says O’Brien. “Everything sparkled.”
It’s in the details
Shoes: Brian Atwood, Nordstrom, 55 E. Grand; Shop.nordstrom.com
Planner: Heather Meibach, Heather Ever Present, (312) 363-8676