Our idea is to keep it simple. We’re having only a pianist — a family friend of my future in-laws — which means, obviously, we’re not looking for pieces written for a full orchestra. But I know the style of music I want: the lush, melodic pieces of the Romantic and Impressionist periods, by composers such as Ravel, Chopin, Debussey, and my favorite classic heartthrob, Rachmaninov.
A few tips when selecting your ceremony music:
- Select a musical style that blends with the overall feel of your wedding – jazzy swing if you’re wearing retro 1920’s glam; Baroque for a full Catholic mass; folksy Americana for an outdoor wedding, etc.
- Choose one style and stick with it. That will keep the mood consistent, and won’t jerk your guests through a disjoined tour of all your favorite genres.
- Pick music that is appropriate for your musicians. If you’ve already hired a harpist, for example, don’t ask her to play an overture from Carmen.
- Try to include at least one favorite piece or movement that holds special meaning for you.
- Don’t choose familiar hymns unless you want to risk guests humming along from the pews.
- Consider an instrumental arrangement of your first dance song for the bride’s processional.
- Consider playing something from your mother’s and mother-in-law’s weddings for their seatings.
- Feel free to suddenly change the mood for your recessional. If all your music has been subdued until then, consider ringing in your marriage with a rousing exit.