Maid of honor who missed wedding goes viral for pre-recorded speech

Ally Lothman told "GMA" her speech was written the night before the wedding.

February 29, 2024, 3:11 PM

When Michelle Levenson married Matthew Levenson, there was one special person missing at their Jan. 20 wedding in Athens, Georgia -- Michelle Levenson's maid of honor, Ally Lothman.

The two have been best friends for the past three decades and Lothman wouldn't have missed her close friend's nuptials had it not been for the fact that she had just given birth to a baby girl just days earlier.

PHOTO:  Ally Lothman and Michelle Levenson have been friends for three decades.
Ally Lothman and Michelle Levenson have been friends for three decades.
Courtesy of Michelle Levenson and Ally Lothman

"Our friendship has just meant so much to each other and it really was such a blow to both of us that I couldn't be there because of how recently I had just given birth," Lothman told "Good Morning America."

Though she couldn't attend in person, the 30-year-old knew she could still be there for the Levensons in spirit and shared a pre-recorded message that their wedding DJ could play during the reception.

PHOTO: Ally Lothman couldn’t attend her best friend Michelle Levenson’s wedding so she recorded her maid of honor speech that was then played at Levenson’s wedding.
Ally Lothman couldn’t attend her best friend Michelle Levenson’s wedding so she recorded her maid of honor speech that was then played at Levenson’s wedding.
Courtesy of Woodell Productions

"I actually wrote this speech the night before her wedding, at 3 a.m. during a diaper change," Lothman explained to "GMA." "It's really crazy because the whole basis for the speech and the concept just was like pinged down into my brain from like, I don't know, the heavens above."

Lothman's speech ended up being a hit at the wedding, and after the Levensons' videographer, Woodell Productions, shared it on TikTok, it quickly went viral, picking up over 17 million views since it was first shared last Friday.

PHOTO: Both Michelle and Matt Levenson said they thought Lothman’s speech was “perfect” after hearing the recording.
Both Michelle and Matt Levenson said they thought Lothman’s speech was “perfect” after hearing the recording.
Courtesy of Woodell Productions

In her funny and nostalgic speech, Lothman referenced a trip to Italy, one of her "most favorite memories" with Michelle Levenson over the course of their longtime friendship.

PHOTO: Michelle Levenson and Ally Lothman pose for a photo during a trip to Pienza, Italy in 2014.
Michelle Levenson and Ally Lothman pose for a photo during a trip to Pienza, Italy in 2014.
Courtesy of Michelle Levenson and Ally Lothman

"I'll never forget my first evening in Cortona, Italy. In true Michelle fashion, she had whisked me up and down the incredibly steep, windy roads that Tuscan city was perched upon," Lothman began, as she took wedding guests and the Levensons on a trip down memory lane during her four-minute speech, before ending by saying the Levensons couldn't be "more perfect for one another."

PHOTO: Michelle and Matthew Levenson married on Jan. 20, during the week of their dating anniversary.
Michelle and Matthew Levenson married on Jan. 20, during the week of their dating anniversary.
Courtesy of Woodell Productions

The two best friends said they couldn't help but get emotional at the time.

PHOTO: When Ally Lothman couldn’t attend her close friend Michelle Levenson’s wedding because she had given birth just days before, she and Levenson connected via FaceTime.
When Ally Lothman couldn’t attend her close friend Michelle Levenson’s wedding because she had given birth just days before, she and Levenson connected via FaceTime.
Courtesy of Michelle Levenson and Ally Lothman

"At the wedding, [Ally's speech] killed. It brought the house down," Michelle Levenson said.

Both Michelle and Matt Levenson said Lothman's maid of honor speech was simply "perfect."

"I think she like nailed it, picking that moment," Michelle Levenson said. "I felt so lucky in the moment and I couldn't believe that it was happening, what I was hearing, and all the inside jokes and references brought so many memories flooding back. It was perfect."

Matt Levenson agreed, adding, "What was important to me was that Michelle had her moment and felt special and loved, because she is, and Ally accomplished that and more than I could have ever imagined at that moment."

Lothman said she was shocked her heartfelt speech went viral on TikTok but is happy to see the enormous and positive reactions to the video clip.

PHOTO: Ally Lothman is seen with her partner Chance and daughter Ada.
Ally Lothman is seen with her partner Chance and daughter Ada.
Courtesy of Ally Lothman

"It was so special to share such an intimate memory of [our] friendship with first her wedding and now with the whole world, and it's been such a joy to have everybody be so supportive of our female friendship," she said. "It's been a blessing to have everybody kind of be along for that and to recognize that, just like she and I have for the past 30 years."