Whilst it’s not uncommon for people ask for their partner’s hand in marriage on the radio, the story of Keith and Pieter’s engagement had a little help from one of their favourite celebrities.
Keith and Pieter are regular listeners to Elaine Paige’s radio show on BBC Radio 2 – tuning in every Sunday. Pieter wrote to Elaine Paige asking her to help him propose to his partner live on air.
Elaine keeps the proposal secret from her listeners saying only “I received a great email from Pieter in West London about his partner Keith. Now I don’t usually do this, but I had a word with my producer to ask if we could phone Keith to read out the letter to him.” The producer had obviously agreed and Keith was waiting on the line.
Elaine takes the call to Keith and says that she understands that he rather likes listening to the show, to which Keith agrees and says that he listens every week and sometimes listens to the repeat in the week.
Elaine then explains the reason for her chat. “I have a wonderful letter from Pieter that I want to read out loud. “Hi Elaine, I am writing to tell you how much my partner Keith and I love your show. It has become a Sunday ritual for us and on the rare occasions that we miss it we listen to it on the app during the week. I have to hold my hands up that it is only since I met Keith that I have become re-introduced to you and the amazing music you play. And for us your word is gospel when it comes to theatre recommendations.”
“Every day with Keith is better then watching our favourite musical – Priscilla Queen of the Desert. And life can be a bit of a musical with highs and lows, dramas and tantrums, divas and understudies, but ultimately it gives you joy and happiness when you’re with someone you love. Being with Keith means that silence can be just as comfortable as a full-on debate as to whether Imelda Staunton will win an Olivier award for her performance in “Gypsy”, ‘or how we would write the sequel to ‘Sex and the City 3’ or ‘The Devil Wears Prada’. Elaine’s welling-up at this point, but continues…
“Happiness is seeing Keith giving me a wink across the room with his piercing blue eyes. Or belly laughs when we arrive at a theatre production that’s been cancelled days ago. It’s coming home discussing the day over a glass of champagne. Watching ‘Long Lost Families’ and not feeling embarrassed for crying. That is love. And for me love is life with Keith. I love walking hand-in-hand with Keith, planning our next holiday, planning the future and living life to its max as life isn’t a dress rehearsal – This is it.”
Elaine and Keith agree that the letter is lovely. With theatrical flair, Elaine then announces “Guess what – Pieter is on the other line.” Keith laughs nervously. “I think he has something he would like to add.” says Elaine before taking up the call with Pieter who thanks her for reading his letter so well. Elaine states “I think you have something to add?” and immediately Pieter says “Keith, in the presence of EP, I would like you to marry me please.” and gets an immediate reply “Yes I will Pieter”
Cue the music, the first 10 seconds of ‘Chapel of Love’ by the Dixie Cups
When we get back to the studio Keith is telling Elaine Paige to get her hat ready and Pieter says “Please come if you can”. Elaine says “If I’m free I will be there.”
The beautifully heartfelt letter is a brilliant surprise. This has to be the best marriage proposal ever! Many happy years together guys.