Bradley Jansen, 24, of Grand Rapids, Mich., sang, or actually lip dubbed, his way into the heart of his girlfriend, Emily Kaplan, also 24, forever this past Memorial Day weekend.
Kaplan thought she was just out for a leisurely trip to Tunnel Park in Holland, Mich., with Jansen, and never expected she’d be swept off her feet as an engaged woman by the end of the day.
It all started in the car ride on the way to the park, when Jansen began singing One Direction’s popular hit, “One Thing” to Kaplan. She didn’t think much of it because apparently Jansen often breaks out in song.
“It’s normal for Brad to sing like that to me in the car, so as soon as I got out and saw one of our friends from Princeton I was like, ‘Ah, there’s something going on,’” Kaplan said on “Good Morning America” Friday.
But Jansen had more than just the simple serenade up his sleeve. He had planned an elaborate lip dub marriage proposal for Kaplan, carefully incorporating all their closest family and friends into a full-blown performance, followed up by a more sentimental, one-on-one moment with just the two of them on the shore of Lake Michigan.
“I just really wanted to do something special to let her know how much I loved her, and I thought let’s do something crazy with her family and friends because they’d all be down for it,” Jansen said.
After watching the entire eight-minute video that has had upward of 170,000 views on Youtube since it was posted Sept. 30, it’s hard to believe Jansen spent only one week putting the proposal together.
“I am a last-minute person, and this really came together the week of, basically. I had been talking about it for a while with some of the guys that I work with. We’re all part of a production team, we like to do video stuff,” Jansen told ABC News.
So the week prior, Jansen and his buddies from his production company, Bradley Productions, went to Tunnel Park to see if the location would work well. He also began asking their friends and family if they’d be able to help practice the stunt the day before the proposal.
Practice makes perfect and the lip dub went off without a hitch. The performance then smoothly transitioned into a more sentimental moment between the couple, as Jansen had hand-written notes placed along the beach for Kaplan to find, eventually leading her to him along with a special video he had made.
“I knew no matter how the proposal was going to happen, I was going to use video in some form. What I do for my living is use video to share stories, so that was very important for me,” Jansen said. “I filmed her brother a few weeks before the proposal. I knew it would be really important to Emily that her immediate family was there for the proposal.”
Jansen decided to also interview their parents, other friends, and even one of Kaplan’s students who was very special to her. He edited their interviews into a collage telling Kaplan how important she was to each of them.
“Emily had always mentioned that if and when I propose, it would be very meaningful if it was just a private special moment with just the two of us. I wanted it to be just us, with her family there right afterwards,” Jansen said. “I tried to make the transition from being crazy with everyone, to just she and I. Each note had a favorite memory or one of my favorite things about her.”
All Jansen’s hard work paid off, and the happy couple is now planning their big day. No date has been set yet, but they do know it will be next summer, preferably on Lake Michigan.