Exclusive Interview with Glenn Ong and Jean Danker
Glenn Ong says he has been sure about marrying Jean Danker since 2011
They are finally walking down the aisle on Dec 16 after seven years together, five of them betrothed to each other.
So, is third time the charm for the groom, who had tied the knot twice before?
That is the burning question on sceptics' minds ever since ONE FM 91.3 DJ Glenn Ong, 46, popped the question to Class 95 DJ Jean Danker, 37, in 2011.
TNP PHOTO: BENJAMIN SEETOR
His first marriage to radio DJ Kate Reyes in 1999 ended in divorce two years later.
He then married Jamie Yeo, also a radio DJ, in 2004 in a union that lasted five years.
In his first full-length interview with The New Paper on Monday about the impending nuptials, Ong was confident that this one is for keeps.
"I will never give up on love," he said.
"I've always been sure from the moment I proposed, I was just waiting around for (Jean) to be ready.
"I am not going to be all cliched and say she is 'The One' because I've said it before, and look what happened. So no more (saying that)," the veteran jock added with a laugh.
"But when you feel really comfortable and you... like spending all your free time with that person, then you know."
TNP PHOTO: BENJAMIN SEETOR
In 2012, however, the celebrity couple almost called off their engagement, after pressure from well-wishers to set a wedding date took a toll on their relationship.
Despite Danker's cold feet at the time, Ong insisted that the five-year wait was not tough.
"If she had said, let's wait seven or eight years, and if everything went as smoothly as it has, I would have.
"At the end of the day, I've done it (marriage) before, and I am in no hurry.
"The last thing I'd want is for her to think that I am making her wait because I've done this before. I'd rather she make me wait," he said.
Danker, who was present at the interview, added: "It was important to me that I be sure, and also for me to be sure that he was sure."
MOMENT OF TRUTH
It was during a recent holiday without Ong that she had an epiphany. It dawned on her how important being married to him would be.
His proposal was her first, and it will be her first marriage.
Danker, who used to date radio presenters Daniel Ong and Don Richmond, said: "I thought to myself, would it matter a hundred years from now, if I could look back at my life, would it matter if I didn't marry Glenn?
"And then I thought, you know what, it would matter, because I love him, and it would be sad if I wasn't (married to him)."
Over the last few months, she had asked him bluntly several times, once even grabbing his shoulders and staring at him in the face: "Are you sure?"
"He was sure the last two times (he got married), and I need this to be a different level of sureness," she said.
While Danker has finally taken the plunge, she is focusing only on the year-end nuptials and nothing else.
She is not putting any thought into starting a family or setting a deadline for having a baby.
"It took me this long to finally get married, so it might take a long time for me to come around to the idea of having children," she said.
"But I'll never say never. As long as I can have kids, there is always a possibility. That's all I'll say."
Ong added jokingly: "If I could get pregnant, I'd get pregnant immediately (after the wedding)."
Basically, for the lovebirds, it is a matter of if it happens, it happens.
They are equally non-committal about moving into a matrimonial home, since they are "fine" with living in either of their studio apartments.
"We've been living at Glenn's place in Orchard (Road) for quite some time," Danker said.
"I don't think I'll get rid of my place (at Holland Village), and I think we'll continue living at his place."
Ong is sure about one thing: Danker is the one he wants to take any step with, whenever and whatever that may be.
"Throughout our relationship, the biggest lesson I've learnt is that a woman can really love someone for exactly who he is.
"Let's face it, I am not perfect, and despite my bad track record when it comes to marriage, she is still willing to take the chance and marry me.
"For that, I will be forever grateful."
She's a one-man woman, he still buys her flowers
There will not be a bridal entourage at their upcoming wedding, but that doesn't mean Glenn Ong and Jean Danker are short of besties to celebrate their big day with.
While one friend feels the wedding has been in the making for far too long, another stresses that a marriage certificate won't make a huge difference.
Class 95 FM DJ Yasminne Cheng, 37, Danker's colleague and good pal, told The New Paper "it's about time", but she was confident the couple would eventually get there.
She said: "The thing about them is they've worked together for so long, and their friendship in itself is a great foundation for their relationship."
Cheng, who has known Danker for more than 13 years, added: "Glenn is a one-woman guy, and Jean, a one-man woman. All she really needs is that partner in her life, and I am glad Glenn is it."
Ong's good friend, Akashi Japanese Restaurant chef Mervin Goh, 44, feels that making things official wouldn't change anything.
"When I look at them, I see a couple that have been married a while... Glenn doesn't only love Jean very much, he loves her very well," said Mr Goh, who has known Ong for more than 20 years.
"Most guys, I have to admit, do take things for granted after being with someone for so long. But for Glenn, he still does the little things - like get her flowers - to put a smile on her face."
Both Cheng and Mr Goh are convinced that third time will indeed be the charm.
"It doesn't matter what people say or think," she said.
"At the end of the day, I am looking forward to a celebration of two people who really love each other. And as long as they are happy together, I am happy for them."
Mr Goh added: "I'll be blunt. Glenn has matured more than ever after two failed marriages, and I have no doubt that he is more ready to handle (marriage) this time round."
Could this be her wedding dress?
ELEGANT & SEXY: A Berta Bridal gown. PHOTO: INSTAGRAM/BELLEANDTULLE
They have chosen to go with an intimate celebration - a solemnisation ceremony followed by a dinner reception for 250 people - so bride-to-be Jean Danker hopes that all she has to do is put on her wedding gown and "turn up".
For everything else, she is leaving it to Mrs Cheryl Tan, the one-woman show behind The Wedding Concepteur.
Mrs Tan, 32, who started her wedding planning company two years ago, gave The New Paper some tidbits on the Dec 16 shindig:
Without spilling details, Danker will be wearing an off-the-rack but altered-to-fit creation from Berta Bridal, an Israel-based fashion house specialising in luxury bridal gowns.
"I'd describe the dress as bold," she said.
"Glenn was there (at) the fitting, and both of us love it."
Mrs Tan added: "She looks elegant and sexy in it. It is a slim-fitting dress with a V-neckline, and it has some lace features. And I love the idea of the detachable train."
Hotel Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort and Spa was the couple's first choice.
Said Mrs Tan: "It is contemporary and well-lit, thanks to the natural lighting from the glass-panelled French doors.
"And it is even better that the couple have decided to hold their solemnisation just outside the ballroom, which faces the South China Sea."
Danker reasoned that the hotel choice came about because it was a place they had good knowledge of.
"I've booked villas there for Glenn's birthday twice, and my sister got married there, so you can call it familiar ground," she said.
While the dinner colour scheme will be predominantly white, the solemnisation will sport a different look.
Mrs Tan said: "It will be cosy, modern and stylish, and it will feature a mishmash of colours and furniture.
"Instead of having guests seated theatre-style, which is what is typically done, we plan to incorporate different styles of chairs and sofas with cocktail tables lacing the peripheral areas so people can choose to sit or just stand around during the ceremony."