Robin grew up in the Far Northeast, graduated from George Washington High School, and earned a degree from the University of the Arts. She moved to New York City in 2003 to pursue her dreams of singing on Broadway. In 2006, she became an intern, student, and performer at Magnet Theater.
Sean, a Web designer who graduated from a Florida high school and Dartmouth College and hopes to be a late-night talk-show host, had performed at the Magnet for more than a year. But their paths never crossed until the 2006 holiday party, when a mutual friend — whom Sean was then dating — introduced them.
Sean is part of Junior Varsity, a resident improv ensemble at the Magnet. When Robin saw him perform, his hilarity won her heart. He was no longer dating the friend who introduced them. "I changed my intern schedule," Robin said, "so it was guaranteed that I would be there every week when he was performing."
Sean soon thought of Robin as "the cute intern." But he had no idea she was interested in him.
Then in spring 2007, he attended her musical improv class' showcase performance. Sean was there to support a friend. He did not know Robin would be on stage and was completely unprepared for her voice. "She is like a siren. I was mesmerized," he said.
One night, Robin was leaving the Magnet with friends when she saw Sean, who was preparing for a performance. "We're going to the bar," she said. "You can stop by if you want."
He showed up and sat next to her. Another person in the group told Sean she'd buy him dinner if he helped her with a computer problem. He was glad to help, he said, but she didn't have to buy. Then Sean turned to Robin. "Speaking of dinner, I'd like to take you to dinner. Like, on a date."
Robin tried to stay calm. "I'd love to," she managed.
Back then, Sean produced a podcast about New Yorkers indulging in touristy things. "I've never been to the Empire State Building," he said. "Do you want to go to the top of the Empire State Building on our first date?" They did. And they kissed up there, too.
That podcast was never broadcast. It was embarrassingly filled with two people gushing over, and trying to impress, each other.
How does forever sound?
Sean, now 35, runs a softball league for comedians that he calls Funnyball. Everyone plays on the Great Lawn in Central Park, and they get wings and drinks after.
One Sunday in 2011, just before Robin's 32d birthday, Sean asked Robin, now an administrative assistant at the Sony Corp., to meet him at the park and to wear a nice dress because they would have a date night after his game.
Sean pulled friend Quinton aside and told him, "After softball, it's your idea to go to Belvedere Castle."
After the game, Sean announced, "Quinton wants to go to Belvedere Castle. Anyone who wants to go, we'll go. Everyone else, we'll meet you at the Boat Basin."
Sean knew Robin could not resist the fanciful castle — she'd been trying to persuade him to climb it forever.
"See, I told you it was cool!" she said when they got to the top and looked out over the park. Sean agreed it was. "I know what we could do. We could do a podcast!" he said, taking out his phone.
"Today is Aug. 14, and we're up on top of Belvedere Castle," he began. "The last 'New Yorkers Doing Touristy Things' podcast we did was 4½ years ago, 4½ of the greatest years of my life."
Robin was already tearing up.
"You would make me the happiest man in the world if you would marry me," Sean told her. "Will you marry me?"
Robin was stunned into silence. "Robin, talk!" she told herself. She said yes.
It was so them
The couple held their wedding and reception for 185 at the Curtis Center.
As their guests were seated, waiting for things to begin, several people stood and began to sing. Soon, 18 people were reenacting the last scene from The Muppets Take Manhattan, singing "Somebody's Getting Married." Once they segued into "He'll Make Me Happy," the bridal party began walking down the aisle. Robin was escorted by her parents, and she sang the last part of the song on her way in.
The flower girls carried a Miss Piggy bride and a Kermit groom that the couple built at Build-A-Bear Workshop. The stuffed animals were huge hits as props in the photo booth at the reception.
In keeping with Robin's faith, the couple were married in a Jewish ceremony. One of their readings was a quotation from the owner of the Magnet Theater, reflecting on how the rules of improv also relate to marriage.
The couple wrote their own vows — which they tweaked up to the last minute — and read them to each other from their cellphones.
This didn't happen at rehearsal
When Robin, seated in a chair, was hoisted into the air for the hora, she felt something snap around her waist. Once back on the floor, she realized her slip was slipping. Robin grabbed her good friend TJ. In a private area behind the stage, the bride lifted her skirt, and TJ refastened her slip's Velcro fastener. Just then, the bandleader showed up and was uncertain of what she was seeing. "Umm … are you going to be OK?" she asked. "It's OK!" TJ assured her. "I'm the gay friend!"
Partway through her vows, Robin thought of a friend's advice and stopped. "I want to take a moment to just pause and look around," she said. "We're really doing this! This is really happening. We're getting married right now!" She was filled with happiness and joy.
Sean hoped that sometime during their wedding day, his bride would serenade him. During the reception, she sang a version of Adele's "Someone Like You," with lyrics changed to reflect the happiness of their romance. Then Robin belted out "Crazy On You" by Heart. "I was just overcome right then," Sean said. He was thrilled that anyone who had never heard his wife's pipes now understood why they enthralled him so. "I kept thinking, 'Wow, that's who I married.'?"
A bargain: A Groupon saved the couple $400 on the photo booth, and the resulting photos served as both guest book and favors.
The splurge: The Atrium at the Curtis Center and caterer Cescaphe was over the original budget, but "the moment we saw the venue, we decided we had to go that route," Robin said. "It was not cheap, but it was incredible and beautiful," she said. "And it was delicious," Sean added.