Wedding Music: An Example

Selecting music for your wedding can seem overwhelming. We love to assist you in any way to make this the most meaningful to you. Here is one suggestive outline for a standard/traditional wedding ceremony. Remember, this is your special day and we do not have to stick to any set format, but this may give you some ideas. Gladly, we will include other selections that are more desirable to you. 

Preparation, arrival and setup:

We will have several phone/email consultations prior to your special day. If you like, we will also be able to attend the wedding rehearsal as a group or one of our group representatives.

-Signals, timing, etc.:

We are happy to collaborate with the event coordinator/wedding planner, to coordinate signals and music timing. It is very helpful for us to have a script and/or program ahead of time.

- Accommodations:

Each musician will need a chair without armrests in the designated playing location. Ample lighting should be available so that we can easily read our music. Stands can be provided by the musicians.

- Arrival:

We will arrive with enough time before the ceremony to incorporate last minute changes and be ready to start on time.  This is generally 15-20 minutes before playing time. 

Prelude Music:

Usually begins 15 minutes prior to ceremony so that the guests enter with music being played.  Most often, we choose suitable music to play, instead of the wedding party having to make specific requests. Our selections will include the following:

G.F. Handel
 Water Music Suite, Air
 J. Massenet
 Meditation from "Thais"
 J.S. Bach
 Air ('on the G string')


The ceremony begins when the parents and/or the first of the wedding party is ready to proceed down the aisle. In order to know when to start playing the ceremony music, we will need a cue from a coordinator to tell us that the wedding party is ready.  As we are playing prelude music and the ceremony time nears, the group leader will be keeping a heads up to watch for the cue from the coordinator.  After the cue is given, please allow up to one or two minutes for us to finish playing our prelude selection and begin playing the first processional piece.  

Seating of the parents/grandparents
  G. F. Handel
Water Music Suite, Air 
  J. S. Bach
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring
  Seating of wedding party
  J. Pachelbel
 Canon in D
 J.S. Bach
 Air ('on the G string')
Processionals: Bridesmaids, Groomsmen,        Flower Girls, Ring Bearers
  J. S. Bach
  My Heart Ever Faithful
  J. S. Bach
  Sheep May Safely Graze
  C. Franck
  Panis Angelicus
  R. Wagner  
  Bridal Chorus
  J. Pachelbel
   Canon in D
F. Schubert
  Ave Maria
  Ave Maria
 F. Mendelssohn
 Wedding March
 L. van Beethoven
 Ode to Joy

Postlude Music:

Usually ends 15 minutes after the ceremony so that the guests exit with music being played.  Most often, we choose suitable music to play, instead of the wedding party having to make specific requests. Our selections will include the following:

G. F. Handel
 Water Music Suite, Hornpipe
 H. Purcell
 Trumpet Tune
 J. Clarke
 Trumpet Voluntary

Making a script/other things to consider

A script or detailed wedding program is very helpful to the musicians so we will know how things are to play out. Generally, the things the group leader needs to know for weddings are:

1:  Seating of parents/grandparents

  • Number of parents/grandparents
  • Who will be the last person?
2: Wedding Party/Processionals
  • Number of groomsmen/bridesmaids
  • Will there be a flower girl or ring bearer?
  • Who will be the last person?
3: Bridal Processional
  • Will the bride be coming directly to the altar? 
  • Will she be stopping to give flowers?
4: Interlude
  • What will be happening during the interlude?  
  • Approximately how long will the music need to be?  
  • What is the signal (or verbal cue) to start playing/stop playing?
5:  Recessional
  • What is the verbal cue to start playing the recessional?  (Usually something like, "I would now like to present to you Mr. John and Mrs. Jane Smith.")
  • Other helpful things the music director should know:
  • Religion/denomination of the families. (This may effect what music we should or should not play)  
  • Name and contact information of wedding coordinator or the person in charge of directing the ceremony.