I think Panis Angelicus by Franck is really beautiful. When I get married I want it to be played at my wedding. My favorite arrangement is the one I have for quartet…just SO beautiful. Of course, I also love Pachelbel’s Canon, but played in a romantic way, not baroque.
Why do I mention this? Clients often ask me for ideas. It’s tough to decide something so important as wedding processional music for somebody else, but I always have lots of ideas. For recent processionals we’ve played Pachelbel Canon (of course), Wagner’s Wedding March, Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring, but also Moonlight Serenade, Clocks by Coldplay, and “Mooshabum” by Feist. So that’s a pretty wide range! Remember, for YOUR wedding, you should pick something you love or at least that you find absolutely beautiful. Or pick something you hate, so you won’t cry! (A friend did this–well, not something she hated, but something ridiculous that made her giggle instead.)
I was browsing online today, looking for more sheet music to add to my collection. I’m always on the lookout for free sheet music, and that was the subject of today’s searches. I ran across a website devoted to music for weddings, and I was reading the frequently asked questions to see what was said about hiring musicians for your ceremony.
One of the questions had to do with whether or not musicians came to the rehearsal. As a rule, we do not attend rehearsals. Why? We don’t need to (and rarely do we have the time.) All the musicians need to know is how many people are walking down the aisle to each song, and what words are being said right before we start a song. If we have any questions regarding when to play, we will have a two to three minute discussion with the person in charge upon our arrival. The only people at the wedding who might have seen more ceremonies than the musicians are the minister or officiant, and perhaps the wedding planner–meaning, don’t worry, no matter what happens, we’ve got it under control. (And things do happen–rarely does a processional actually happen exactly the way we are told it will!)
Another frequently asked question is “Do you play the whole song or do you stop partway through?” We rarely play the whole song (during a processional or the ceremony), unless specifically requested. We are experts at coming to a stop in any song when the situation calls for it. If we are playing three songs for the processional, chances are we will only play a tiny bit of each song. We might not start at the beginning if we feel that there is a part later in the song that is more appropriate or beautiful. If you ever have a specific part of the song that you love, do let us know so we can take that into account when deciding on cuts.
Another question on the website involved whether or not you should invite the wedding musicians to the reception or dinner. If we are only playing at your ceremony, there is no reason to do so. If we are playing for your dinner, we are always thrilled when we are offered food, as generally we don’t get to eat until after we leave, and sometimes the smell of the food is almost torturous! However, we know that food can be expensive, so we do understand. Water, however, is always welcome.
Those are just a few of my thoughts regarding a few frequently asked questions. I’ll try to think of more questions to answer in the future!