A very public proposal: Would you follow Kim Kardashian and Kanye West's lead?

The public proposals usually involve flashmobs that culminate in someone getting down on one knee - all of course caught on camera

This weekend, American viewers of reality show Keeping Up with the Kardashians will see the programme's star, Kim, get engaged to her rapper boyfriend, Kanye West. The proposal, which happened in October last year, was rumoured to have cost millions and involved hiring an entire baseball pitch, fireworks, a 50-strong orchestra, private jets, a diamond as big as a Ritz cracker... and lots of TV cameras.

West's very public gesture is the zenith of what is a growing trend for proposals with viral potential. We're talking flashmobs; a pre-organised happening, usually in a very ordinary place (shopping centres are popular), involving apparently ordinary people breaking into a choreographed dance or song, culminating in someone getting down on one knee. All caught on camera, preferably professionally shot.

Efforts shared on social media get serious traffic. "Spencer's Home Depot Marriage Proposal" – filmed in a DIY shop in Utah – has had 11 million views since September 2013.

There has been a rise in OTT British proposals, too. This week saw the broadcast of the first episode of The Proposers, a TV series following London-based "proposal planners" as they arrange engagements. The series features a flash-mob choir on the London Eye and a choreographed ice dance. "We've had wedding videos for some time," says videographer Marco Federici of Federal State Media. "Now people are taking it to the next level; they want their own reality show made around it – from proposal to the big day."

Federici is accustomed to filming in Ibiza's superclubs, but in December, his venue was Glasgow's Braehead shopping centre to capture 32-year-old Bobby Beattie proposing to his girlfriend with the help of a dance group and Bruno Mars' "Marry You" track on the PA. The video, "A Christmas Love Story in Glasgow", has had more than 21,000 hits. And Federici has now been booked for more wedding-related work.

Jay Marsh, a freelance musician from south London, has also benefited from the trend for public proposals. In the last four months he’s been hired to play for three nearly-weds. Though none of the performances were filmed, he’s clear on what’s spawned the ideas:

“When there’s a superman cape involved and a series of placards to declare the guy's intentions, viral videos spring to mind.”

Are all-out proposals with an eye on internet fame going to become the norm? Not according to Bernadette Chapman, of Dream Occasions, an Essex-based wedding planner. She started offering proposal packages after reading about similar dedicated services in the US. But she soon scrapped the idea. "No one wanted to pay," she says. "People would ask for a flash mob, but they're expensive – there are musicians or dancers to hire, PA systems, a videographer, a photographer, plus an organising fee."

Both Chapman and Miryam Farrell, the weddings manager at Create Food and Party Design, a London-based catering and events company, say the couples that they work with err on the side of tradition.

"Our clients choose low-key ways of proposing, such as a romantic holiday or their first-date venue," says Farrell. "They tell us they want the actual moment to be private."

If it's a quiet proposal that's wanted, there's still help available. This Valentine's Day, "luxury lifestyle club" iVIP – accessed through apps, ranging from £0 to a whopping £699, offering a scale of access to exclusive hotels, supercars, private jets and more – is on hand to arrange last-minute proposals. In practice, anyone willing to pay can use the app to instruct iVIP's partner concierge service buy:time. In 10 years, it has organised about 50 proposals and is expecting a rise in demand after its inclusion in the app.

For many, any third party involvement in asking that special someone for their troth remains unthinkable. Ed Perrin, 30, a London-based windfarm developer, proposed to 29-year-old literary agent Camilla Young in the middle of watching a film while they were staying in an unglamourous B&B (with bunk beds instead of the more traditional four-poster).

"Milly would've been mortified if I'd done it in public," he says. "For years, I think she was avoiding climbing mountains with me at sunrise or sunset.

It's the most vulnerable and personal thing you can do together, and the idea of sharing that with anyone seemed a bit daft."

Try telling that to Kanye.

federalstatemedia.com

jaymarshmusic.com

createfood.co.uk

dream-occasions.co.uk

ivipworld.com


 

Arts and Entertainment
arts + entsWith one of the best comic roles around, it's no wonder she rarely bothers with films
News
people
News
i100
News
Davis says: 'My career has been about filling a niche - there were fewer short actors and fewer roles – but now I'm being offered all kinds of things'
PeopleWarwick Davis on Ricky Gervais, Harry Potter and his perfect role
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookA wonderful selection of salads, starters and mains featuring venison, grouse and other game
Life and Style
ebookAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
Voices
A Russian hunter at the Medved bear-hunting lodge in Siberia
Save the tigerWildlife charities turn to those who kill animals to help save them
Sport
Frank Lampard will pass Billy Wright and equal Bobby Charton’s caps tally of 106 caps against
sportFormer Chelsea midfielder in Etihad stopgap before New York contract
News
i100
Sport
Usain Bolt of Jamaica smiles and shakes hands with a competitor after Jamaica won their first heat in the men's 4x100m relay
sport
News
Chancellor George Osborne, along with the Prime Minister, have been 'complacently claiming the economy is now fixed', according to shadow Chancellor Ed Balls
i100... which is awkward, because he is their boss, after all
Arts and Entertainment
The first film introduced Daniel Radcliffe to our screens, pictured here as he prepares to board the train to Hogwarts for the first time.
booksHow reading Harry Potter helps children grow up to be gay-friendly
Life and Style
A small bag of the drug Ecstasy
Health
News
i100
Life and Style
Floral-print swim shorts, £26, by Topman, topman.com; sunglasses, £215, by Paul Smith, mpaulsmith.co.uk
FashionBag yourself the perfect pair
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    (Senior) IT Support Engineer - 1st-3rd Line Support

    £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful IT service provider that has bee...

    Wind Farm Civil Design Engineer

    £55000 - £65000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Principal Marine Mechanical Engineer

    £60000 - £70000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Principle Geotechnical Engineer

    £55000 - £65000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

    Day In a Page

    Save the Tiger: Meet the hunters tasked with protecting Russia's rare Amur tiger

    Hunters protect Russia's rare Amur tiger

    In an unusual move, wildlife charities have enlisted those who kill animals to help save them. Oliver Poole travels to Siberia to investigate
    Transfers: How has your club fared in summer sales?

    How has your club fared in summer sales?

    Who have bagged the bargain buys and who have landed the giant turkeys
    Warwick Davis: The British actor on Ricky Gervais, how the Harry Potter set became his office, and why he'd like to play a spy

    'I'm a realist; I know how hard this business is'

    Warwick Davis on Ricky Gervais, Harry Potter and his perfect role
    The best swim shorts for men: Bag yourself the perfect pair and make a splash this summer

    The best swim shorts for men

    Bag yourself the perfect pair and make a splash this summer
    Has Ukip’s Glastonbury branch really been possessed by the devil?

    Has Ukip’s Glastonbury branch really been possessed by the devil?

    Meet the couple blamed for bringing Lucifer into local politics
    Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

    Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

    Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
    Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

    Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

    When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
    5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

    In grandfather's footsteps

    5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
    Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

    Martha Stewart has flying robot

    The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
    Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

    Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

    Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
    A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

    A tale of two presidents

    George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
    Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

    The dining car makes a comeback

    Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
    Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

    Gallery rage

    How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
    Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

    Eye on the prize

    Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
    Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

    Women's rugby

    Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup