If you are in the midst of planning your wedding, choosing your wedding ceremony music is just important a task as deciding on your evening entertainment. There are many parts of a wedding ceremony where music is used—it’s not just used for the bride’s entrance, and there are no rules to follow so you really can show off your personalities and choose something that is unique to you. This guide will help to explain the fundamental parts of a wedding ceremony where music is appropriate and provide you with a number of ideas for choosing the right type of music to suit your big day.
Arrival and Seating of the Guests
While the bride is busy getting ready, she will miss the arrival and seating of the wedding guests, however it is traditional and welcoming to have music playing as guests are seated. There are a number of options available to choose from, including a wide selection of live music: violinists, string quartets, pianists, etc. The songs that are chosen are completely down to you and you can stick with traditional music, including the dreamy masterpiece Canon in D by composer Pachelbel, to more modern tracks. Most musicians will be able to play a variety of styles and cater to any tastes.
Usually, you will choose slightly less upbeat music while guests are seated, especially if you have decided on more traditional pieces. Musicians that are perfect for this genre of music include harpists, string quartets, violinists, flutists and classical guitarists as they provide an atmospheric, delightful tone. Always check with your wedding venue to ensure they can accommodate your choice of musician.
If you decide to book live music for your wedding, it is likely that this will be consistent throughout your wedding ceremony.
Arrival of the Bride and Bridal Party
Traditionally, the bride and bridal party will walk down the aisle to Mendelssohn’s wedding march, especially if you are having a church ceremony. This can be provided by the church organist, however if you have booked a musician for other parts of your ceremony, there is no reason why they cannot play your entrance music too.
Civil ceremonies are a little different, in that you are not allowed any religious influence during any part of your ceremony and this also applies to your choice of music. The wedding march is not religious, so again is a popular choice along with other classical pieces such as Bach’s Air on the G String.
It is also possible to walk down the aisle to more modern, contemporary music and it is important to choose something you really love for your big entrance.
Signing of the Register
Although not a requirement, it is generally prudent that quiet background music plays while you sign the register. More common in civil ceremonies, make sure that you select another piece of music for this part of your wedding ceremony. A whimsical choice, such as Ave Maria would suit a classical wedding, however, again you are not restricted to classical music.
The Bride and Groom’s Exit
Once you are announced as husband and wife, you will walk back down the aisle hand-in-hand ready to celebrate with watching friends and family. The music choice for this part of your wedding ceremony is usually more upbeat than previous musical selections. If you are following on with the classical theme, The Four Seasons by Vivaldi makes an exquisite choice, or alternatively you could choose a modern song that has meaning for you both as a couple.
Music During Photography
While you are getting those all-important photos and group shots, guests will be mingling and enjoying a nice glass of bubbly. Providing background music for this part of your wedding can help to relax guests who might be meeting for the first time; and also act as a form of entertainment through these quieter periods. A string quartet or harpist will provide beautiful background music, or if you are looking for something unusual, consider an opera singer, a male singer or female vocalist.
Don’t forget to budget when choosing the type of music for your wedding ceremony; sometimes this is overlooked in favour of the evening party, and adding a live element to your ceremony can really help to make your wedding remarkable. Remember to choose something that will suit you as a couple, and something that will suit the style of wedding you are looking to achieve.
For more entertainment and music ideas for your wedding ceremony and evening party, take a look at Entertainers Worldwide, a website dedicated to providing direct contact with entertainers, bands, musicians, acts & more – with no external booking fees!