On Saturday night, April 21, Consorti Electronics was joined in marriage to Global Intermarketing.
Monica Consorti, whose father owns Italy's largest TV-stereo firm, became Contessa Monica Agusta, wife of Count Riccardo (Rocky) Agusta, only heir to Agusta Aviation - which recently merged with Bell Helicopter, a subsidiary of Textron, Agusta is also president of the U.S. based import/export brokerage film, Global Intermarketing.
For the two darlings of Italian society magazines, it was a marriage made in the board room. And more.
For Agusta and Consorti, it was the second marriage - to each other. The first, a civil ceremony, had taken place in January. Consorti was in a Washington hospital recovering from an automobile accident, and the two decided that they didn't want to postpone the nuptials until she was released.
"It wasn't love at first sight when they met," confide Agusta's partner, Baron Glanfranco Fiorio, "but after they got to know each other, they were very much in love. The families get along very well, too."
That first wedding had been for themselves: two young people - he is 28, she is 22 - who didn't want to wait. Saturday's religious service was for their family and friends from the world on international finance, and the tradition-conscious Italian nobility.
The wedding - held in the small Dahlgren Chapel on the Georgetown University campus, where the contessa is a student - was simple and very private. Both bride and groom wanted it that way.
"It is my day. I don't like too much people around. I hope the press understands," was the bride's explanation for the comparative privacy of the ceremony.
But 200 fur-cloaked, satin and chiffonclad, bejeweled and black-tie guests, who arrived in 15 black limousinee provided by Agusta, did not go unnoticed by the jeans- and T-shirt set lobbing Frisbees around the chapel entrance.
"Look at those emeralds," said one femaale student, dressed in cut-offs.
"Yeah," replied her companion, barefoot in khaki. "Can you imagine how much money these people must be worth?"
It was a question stated with a sense of wonder, not resentment - which in part, underscored why the Georgetown chapel had been chose for the wedding in the first place.
Agusta had chartered a jet for 68 of Italy's nobility and business community, who were flown to the wedding and housed in the Madison and Watergate hotels. Sixty-eight Beautiful People come attached to 136 beautiful kneecaps, and both families were understandably concerned that their guests leave the ceremonies in more or less the same physical condition as when they had entered.
"If you're born with a title and money and position, it can be a detriment," Baron Fiorio, whose title can be traced back to the Crusades, said of Count Agusta, who is a relative newcomer whose title only dates from the 14th or 15th century.
"It is especially true in Italy today," Fiorio continued. "Of course, there are advantages, but whatever you have, you look at both sides. There was a great worry about handling security. We never could have provided the security needed in Europe.
"Rocky's father, Count Corrado, lives in Mexico most of the time. He is afraid to go to Italy because of kidnaping," confided one guest. "Even here, he has his bodyguard along."
Washington was also a sentimental choice. Both bride and groom "love this city," and intend to make it their home. Count Agusta is applying for American citizenship.
"Rocky and Monica wanted a simplified version of the traditional Italian ceremony. They wanted it to be a very private time, said Fiorio. "They have worked very hard to pull it off."
The simple candlelight mass, presided over by Msgr. De Bonis of the Vatican administration and close friend of the Consorti family, started at 6:30.
The flat white walls of the chapel swallowed the glow of the candles, leaving guests who were filing in to the muted strains of the Pachelbel Canon in D suspended in a chalky aura. The polished glow of the women's faces and glistening hair, coiffed by Roberto of Italy - who flew an extra helper from New York to handle 30 preceremony comb-outs - reflected the bursts of tiny flames at the altar.
The wedding party arrived. The mother of the groom, former actress Maria Maresco, was escorted to the first row. Francesca Agusta, second wife of the groom's father, sat in the second row.
Observed one Italian American guest, "In Italy, the mother is very important still."
The bride's family and attendants came next.
As the strains of the "Lord's Prayer" were fading, the shouts and applause coming from the 300 or so students gathered in the courtyard told guests that the bride was on her way. Even before the Lohengrin was pumped up, guests were on their feet, taking their signal from a wiry young man in a gray suit who danced paparazzi-style down the aisle exploding his flash gun and heralding the bride's arrival.
The hour-long ceremony was in Italian, but in recognition of the international crowd, Msgr. De Bonis chose to underscore the most significant part of the ceremony by translating it.
"Monica et Roberto, Dio vi tenga nel palmo della sua mano.
"Monica and Roberto, God holds you in the palm of His hand."
After the handshake, the BachGounod "Ave Maria," and the communion, it was Mendelssohn and applause as even more students crowded the courtyard, accepting mints from the ushers and speculating on the cost of the bride's dress (bead-embroidered chiffon and satin by Renato Balestra - estimated cost: $8,000).
"Hey, let's do something to shake this crowd up," shouted one student as the guests moved to the limousines that would carry them to the reception at the Madison. The best he could come up with was a deftly executed Frisbee maneuver.
At the Madison, the kissing, handshaking and good spirit of the departure escalated, encouraged by the generous passing trays of Moet et Chandon and the two abundantly stocked bars in the corners.
A Mexican band of three guitars and two harps played rousing tunes to greet guests heading to the receiving line.
Maria Patricia de Savoia, daughter of Umberto, former king of Italy, was resplendent in silver and magenta as she forcefully expounded to some of her countrymen. And John Volpe, former governor of Massachusetts and ambassador to Rome, was catching up on old times as he move throughout the crowd.
"We thought we'd have this time first, before the guests go in for the dinner so that they would have a chance to wind down," said the groom. "All these people haven't seen each other for a long time."
In fact - given the business interests of the principals and their friends - the traditional nuptial joy and celebration threatened to succumb to sophisticated discussions of international politics and finance. But then Contessa Monica Agusta made her entrance. Smiling, she took the glowing groom's hand. Together they walked into the reception room.
"Lq spousa! La spousa!" came the shouts from the guests. And their applause showing they had remembered - it was a wedding. CAPTION: Picture 1, Count Riccardo and Countess Monica Agusta, by Margaret Thomas - The Washington Post. Picture 2, The Agusta wedding, by Margaret Thomas - The Washington Post