Hitting All the Right Notes

CelloWith less than four months until my wedding, I’m beginning to plan the actual ceremony.  Right now, my focus is on music.  

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.

~ Laura


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