Couples ask me all the time for wedding music suggestions. It’s difficult for them to focus on this important feature with so much going on. Music makes up one-third to one-half of the ceremony. Unfortunately, music is often neglected until 2-3 weeks before wedding day. Rarely do couples know what song or classical piece they want to hear, let alone when they want the music to begin and end.
Ceremonies typically follow the same musical format – prelude, processional, special music, and recessional (and sometimes a postlude).
Prelude music occurs well before the ceremony begins (typically 15-20 minutes). The prelude sets the tone and provides a nice ambient atmosphere for guests as they arrive. The style and mood can vary. It all depends on the bride and groom’s preferences.
Processional music signals the start of the ceremony. Traditionally, parents and grandparents are seated first, followed by the remaining bridal party. Different pieces of music can indicate different entrances. I’ve played as many as three separate pieces during the processional. A brief pause usually signals the all-important bridal entrance just before a unique piece of music.
Some couples choose to have Special music in the middle of the ceremony. Instrumental or vocal music works well for this. It can occur while the bride and groom light the unity candle or while they gaze lovingly into one another’s eyes.
Never Let You Go, by The Artful Composer
The Recessional and Postlude are the final pieces. They signal the bride, groom, and wedding party’s exit. These pieces are most often lively and joyous!
Regardless of the musical styles or format you choose, your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life.
Here are 3 ways music can make your’s extra special –
1.) Strings From Start to Finish
Strings are expressive instruments, only second to the voice. Their expressive vocal quality is romantic and timeless. The string player’s brilliant sound adds an enchanting element to wedding ceremonies.
Excerpt from Strong and Weak, by The Artful Composer –
Strings also add a nice visual component. Most would admit that the musician’s expressive physical gestures add charm to a wedding ceremony.
Gigmasters is a great resource for hiring string players and other instrumentalists. You can expect to pay anywhere from $150-$250 per musicians (a small price to pay for such a marvelous addition to your wedding ceremony).
2.) Refresh the Traditional Wedding Tunes
Many couples choose to include classical pieces, such as Johann Pachelbel’s famous Canon in D or Richard Wagner’s Bridal Chorus.
Pachelbel’s Canon in D –
Wagner’s Bridal Chorus –
Modernizing these traditional tunes is a brilliant way to add a fresh detail to your wedding ceremony. Most musicians with improvisation skills can easily refresh these pieces for you.
I explain it all in this video –
3.) Bride and Groom Wedding Themes
Musical themes are memorable melodies attached to a person or an idea.
Think of your favorite movie for a moment. I’m talking about the one you can’t get enough of and have seen like 100 times! Now try and remember the musical theme attached to your favorite character. Chances are you can immediately connect the main character to his or her musical theme.
Forrest Gump Theme, by Alan Silvestri –
Pride and Prejudice Theme, by Dario Marianelli –
Romantic Theme, by The Artful Composer –
Now imagine walking down the aisle to a musical theme crafted especially for you. Such joy would fill your soul at that moment. Imagine pulling out the video documentary years later and reliving your wedding day. That’s music to remember!
These are only three of the many ways music can make your wedding day extra special. Bottom line, give lots of thought to the music and plan well in advance of the ceremony. You don’t want to throw music and musicians together the week before. Your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life. Make it extra special!
Let me know if you have any questions about wedding music selections. I’d be happy to help point you in a direction that feels right to you. I’d love to compose your wedding day piece! Mention this post when you submit the contact form and receive 15% off the total commission price!
Scroll down to download sheet music for my contemporary arrangement of The Bridal Chorus. Print and use it as you wish! I hope it makes your wedding day extra special.
CLICK ON THE WEDDING MUSIC LINK!