Jewish Wedding at Beth Israel Synagogue

This summer, we had the privilege of photographing a Jewish wedding in Vancouver at Beth Israel Synagogue. Christie + Isaac celebrated their wedding ceremony and evening dinner reception at this freshly rebuilt Synagogue on Vancouver’s west side. Beth Israel Synagogue wedding Vancouverbeth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2841 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2842Christie started her wedding day with her mom and sister at Beth Israel Synagogue in their bridal room. With help from her sister bridesmaid, she prepared for a first look a few blocks away at a quiet local park in Vancouver’s Shaughnessy neighbourhood.
beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2843 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2844 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2863Isaac waited at the park for Christie’s arrival at the best first look location we identified them. There, they saw each other for the first time that day, and as expected, they were both very excited to see each other formally dressed for their wedding ceremony later that afternoon. After taking photos at the park, we return to the Synagogue to prepare for the first part of their Jewish wedding ceremony, the signing of the first look locations in Vancouver wedding first look at a park beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2848 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2850 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2851 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2852 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2853 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2854 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2857 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2858 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2856 Jewish bride and groom at their Beth Israel wedding ceremonyAt the synagogue, we took a few more wedding photos around the new building before the official start to the Jewish wedding ceremony.beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2861 Jewish groombeth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2868 beth-israel-synagogue-wedding-ceremonyInside the beautiful Synagogue sanctuary, the wedding guests await the bride and groom’s arrival. One of the things you’ll notice at a Jewish wedding ceremony is the chuppah, which is canopy that a Jewish couple stand underneath during the ceremony. But before the start of the ceremony, the couple sign the marriage contract, called the ketubah, with their families and rabbi as witnesses. jewish-wedding-vancouver_2864 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2866 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2869 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2870 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2871Beth Israel Synagogue wedding ceremony beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2873 A groom breaking the glass beth israel wedding ceremony beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2876The guests then joined the cocktail reception in the courtyard while we took family photos following the wedding ceremony.beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2880 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2878 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2879 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2881Despite it being summer, we received a little Holy rain during the family photo session. It was good luck because the rain didn’t last long. beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2882 Kippah for Jewish wedding ceremonyThe synagogue has a large and beautiful venue space for wedding receptions. Enough to invite a few more hundred guests if they wanted to – but of course a large floor space was reserved for the dancing yet to come. beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2884 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2885 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2886 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2887 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2888 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2889 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2890 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2891 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2892There were speeches and table visits throughout the evening. We loved capturing the candid moments throughout the evening reception. catering for Beth Israel wedding beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2894Then it was time for the first dance, no, not just any first dance, but a performance that put us in complete awe. beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2895 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2896 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2897 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2900 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2901 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2898 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2899 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2902 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2903But our favourite part of the evening was the dance celebrations, also known as the Hora. beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2904 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2905 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2906The best part of the Hora was the chair dance for the bride and groom. Their expressions of sheer happiness and fear all at once was priceless. They are some of my favourite wedding photos of that day. Jewish Hora dance Beth Israel hora wedding dance beth-israel-wedding-dancing_2909 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2910 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2911 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2912 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2913After the hora, Side One Band took over the evening festivities, shifting from Jewish dancing music to a number of contemporary hits. There is nothing like having a live band – it was incredible as always!beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2914 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2915 side-one-band-vancouver_2916 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2917 beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2918Christie’s father played guitar that evening as they slow danced their way into the latter part of their amazing wedding day. It was a fantastic experience and we hope to do another Jewish wedding again soon. Congratulations again Christie and Isaac! beth-israel-wedding-vancouver_2920

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