Ideas for your live wedding ceremony music
Your wedding ceremony should be a very special moment and we think that live music can help to make it even more memorable. When you have live music you don’t need to worry about a PA system or CD player malfunctioning; you don’t need to rely on an usher to fade the music in and out; and you can ask your musicians to perform your favourite songs in a unique way, creating special memories.
Down for the Count have some great options available for your wedding ceremony, from a wedding pianist to a jazz band to a string quartet. All of our wedding ceremony musicians are flexible and can create special versions of your favourite songs, giving you entertainment that is totally unique.
Our ceremony musicians can provide music for the whole ceremony:
- 20 minutes before the ceremony
- the entrance (‘procession’) of the bride
- the signing of the register
- the exit (‘recession’) of the bridal party
- any hymns or group songs
We can also stay after your ceremony, providing entertainment for the drinks reception at a fraction of the cost of booking two separate entertainers.
Live classical music for your wedding ceremony
Although we love modern music, we all trained as classical musicians and love performing it at wedding ceremonies. It provides a real touch of class and is definitely a very romantic option.
Our simplest ceremony music option is a classical pianist – me! I’ve performed at well over 500 wedding ceremonies and have a huge repertoire of classical piano music for each part of the ceremony. My favourite classical music for weddings includes Debussy, Chopin and Elgar – most of the pieces I play are well-known but not overplayed, which always seems to go down well.
Of course, a wedding pianist like myself is not restricted to classical music and can perform jazz music, songs from films and musicals, or even pop songs. Just get in touch with your ideas!
It may be that your choice of songs would be enhanced by adding a second musician. There are no hard and fast rules, but I tend to find that classical music can be enhanced by adding a cellist or a trumpeter to the pianist; and jazz, musicals and pop songs can be enhanced by adding a vocalist. Check out some examples of different duo line-ups below - like I said, there are no rules so get in touch with your ideas!
It's also worth mentioning that I'm a trained church organist and have performed on the organ for hundreds of religious ceremonies in churches and chapels.
The other option for classical music is having a string quartet, Down for the Count Strings. The massive advantage here is that they are completely acoustic, and can perform indoors or outdoors. With all the options above, you would almost always need to find a way to run power for the equipment – but not so for the string group, who can play just about anywhere as long as there are four chairs and it isn’t raining.
We think our string group stands out because it not only performs the classics, but also pop songs, Bollywood, Disney, music for Jewish wedding ceremonies and more – you name it, they can probably do it!
We can also create something completely unique for you. Later in 2018, we’re going to be making a line-up of vocalist, pianist and string quartet to play a happy couple out with Higher and Higher. There is really no end to the options so get in touch with your ideas and we’ll put together something special for you.
Live contemporary music for your wedding ceremony
We’ve gone through the classical options, but Down for the Count also have great options for performing “popular” music (which, for the sake of this article, we’re taking to mean anything from 1920s onwards – so that includes jazz, soul, pop, musicals, films… you name it).
First of all, as mentioned above a duo of pianist and vocalist is fantastically versatile and can play an enormous range of popular music. It’s also possible to swap the pianist for an acoustic guitarist, if you think that would suit your song choices better. Remember though that if you have a vocalist, you’ll almost definitely need to have a power source nearby for a small PA system – if you’re having an indoor ceremony this is rarely a problem, but sometimes it does create issues for outdoor ceremonies.
One great and unusual option for your wedding ceremony is The Jazz Standards Quartet. They can play popular jazz standards and it's a fantastic, unusual option which will certainly make your ceremony stand out.
Things to think about when planning wedding ceremony music
I hope this article has given you ideas about music you could have for your wedding ceremony – but like I said, there are no rules!
When you’re planning wedding ceremony music, I’d advise you to have a think about what sort of songs and atmosphere you want to create with the music before getting in touch – and then we can advise you on the best group of musicians to suit your requests. We usually find there is a bit of back-and-forth when planning the wedding ceremony – but it’s actually a lot of fun planning the perfect entertainment.
Do consider how far away the nearest power source is when planning your ceremony. Also consider where you’re going to position the musicians – as much as we’d love to have the power of invisibility, you will always be able to see us. We usually find that the best position for the musicians is in the front corner - it’s the easiest place to see everything that is going on, but being positioned slightly off to the side means we’re not in every single photograph (which you probably don’t want). However, if it’s necessary to perform at the back of the room, it’s no problem at all. Please remember that some of our groups need electrical PA equipment, but we do our very best to make sure electrical equipment is placed as discreetly as possible so we don’t ruin the aesthetics of your wedding ceremony.
We love getting to know you when planning music for your wedding ceremony. Get in touch today with your live ceremony music ideas and we can start planning today!