• katharinethorley

Choosing Perfect Wedding Music

Updated: Jun 3, 2019

Possibly the most important and largest event you’ll ever organise, here are a few words of advice when thinking about the sort of music you would like as the soundtrack to that most memorable of days – your wedding. If you’re in the midst of planning a wedding then you already know that the job of organising one is pretty much a full time gig, and whilst we can’t advise you where to seat your bachelor uncle who’s fond of a risque joke or two, or decide whether it’s worth doing bacon butties at midnight, we can help you put together a flawless musical backdrop to the day, to accompany each unique element of your wedding and help you find the perfect wedding pianist. It’s a big topic so we’ll start with choosing the music for your wedding ceremony and a second blog post covering the reception will follow…


Choosing the perfect wedding ceremony music

The Wedding Ceremony – to some, it’s simply the part you have to sit through before you can feasibly have a glass of champagne but when you are the couple getting married, the ceremony – and every part of it – takes on a whole new level of sentimentality and significance. Your choice of words and music become all-important. So here are some things to think about when choosing the soundtrack to your day.


01. Break it down…

The ceremony is a series of elements and it can help to think about the requirements for each one separately, so as to create the right atmosphere for each. Start with the arrival of guests – the music you choose sets the tone, so think about the over-arching style of the wedding – music is an extremely powerful tool that you can use to help set the scene… Other parts to consider are the processional music – aka the bride’s grand entrance, pieces of music to play during the ceremony and particularly during the signing of the register (which takes a surprisingly long time so have plenty of options here) and the recessional music. It’s a relatively new tradition to process back down the aisle as husband and wife to a fun celebratory song that resonates with you both – ‘Signed, Sealed Delivered I’m Yours!’ anyone?! I’m embarrassed to say I’ve witnessed that choice twice to date.


02. Consider the style…

For an elegant start to proceedings, consider a classic string quartet for your wedding music – like our very own Crystal Palace String Quartet (listen to them here). This talented quartet play for orchestras including the London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the English National Opera and will travel to wherever you require first-class musical performances and can arrange your favourite pieces / songs for a string quartet, so you can have music meaningful to you both. Another great choice would be the Marylebone Trio. Comprising the supreme woodwind talents of Jemma, Helen and Alex, whose highly sought after wedding music repertoires encompass classical and light opera from Beethoven to Vivaldi, jazz and light music, pop classics and assorted last night of the proms favourites to create the perfect ambience for your guests’ arrival (you can listen to them here).

Want less traditional or wedding music with a vintage vibe? Victoria Ward, Sarah Goodwin and Megan McConnell are the creme de la creme of the city’s postmodern jazz and vintage music scene and their beautiful voices will enchant your guests as they arrive and settle to await your arrival.


The Crystal Palace String Quartet

03. Make a grand entrance (and exit)…

If your heart is set on a beautiful piano composition included in your wedding music, here are a few classic choices for wedding ceremony processionals and recessionals: Canon in D by Johann Pachelbel, Clair de Lune by Claude Debussy, Wedding March by Felix Medelssohn and Bridal Chorus by Richard Wagner. We have a supremely talented and professional number of wedding pianists on hand to perform at your wedding, either as solo pianists or accompanied by a singer. Of course your venue may not have a piano handy – maybe you’re getting married outside, or at home, or on a boat and getting Grand Piano in place for your big day seems nigh on impossible. You don’t need to cross it off your wish list just yet! We have an ingenious portable Grand Piano Shell for hire which can be set up in a few minutes and lends the prestige and elegance of a Grand Piano to a keyboard so that whether you need that beautiful piano piece played in a barn or beach our portable piano shell makes it possible.


Grand Piano Shell (available for hire with or without a pianist!)

04. Make it meaningful

This is an especially importance consideration for the processional, recessional and first dance music. It’s a lovely touch when your wedding music choices are meaningful to each other and the sentimentality won’t go unnoticed by your guests. A word to the wise however, do carefully consider the lyrics to be sure your choices are appropriate – 2005 was a very bad year for this! Countless brides walked up or down the aisle to James Blunt’s hit ‘You’re Beautiful’ without realising the song was about a stalker in a subway high on drugs – romantic? Not so much.


Our musicians have huge musical repertoires at their disposal and if there is a particular song or a piece of music you want played at a key moment they will learn and arrange it especially for you. If you want something entirely bespoke consider booking Bounder & Cad – an incredible duo who will compose hysterical personal songs about your paramour – much to their delight! See them in action here.


Fun and frivolity with Bounder & Cad's bespoke songs

If you need tailored advice or to check availability and prices for your wedding date do get in touch and we will be only too happy to help. More tips for choosing your wedding reception music coming next month.

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