See below some of my ideas for music at three of the most popular occasions that we get asked to play for:
Roman Catholic Wedding Ceremonies, Civil Wedding Ceremonies or Drinks Canapé
Roman Catholic Wedding Ceremony
* It is always a good idea to run the music you have chosen with your Priest prior to your wedding date. This is due to the fact that many ‘wedding musicians’ do not abide by any liturgical rules and choose music that is inappropriate to be played in a church. Melody Kite Music however are also church musicians so are very accustomed to abiding by the ‘liturgically correct’ church music.
- Gathering Music: This usually begins about fifteen minutes before the bride is due to arrive. It can include some of the couples favourite classical pieces or light background music to create an atmosphere of calm.
- Entrance Procession: Instrumentals are usually the best as the bride walks up the aisle. Good examples are The Arrival of the Queen of Sheeba – Handel, Air on a G string – Bach or Elizabethan Serenade – Binge or Gabriel’s oboe- Morricone.
- Lighting of the Marraige Candle: This takes place nearly immediately after the welcome from the priest so often couples like to have a short piece that echoes the opening processional. A traditional Irish slow air is also popular such as An Chuilfhionn or she moves through the fair.
- The Responsorial Psalm:This is usually sung. (although can be also read by a family member and occurs after the first reading and before the second) Popular settings are in you creation finds its joy – Ronan McDonagh, Eagles Wings – Joncas, Shelter me O God- Joncas or Be not afraid – Dufford.
- Gospel Acclamation: This is usually sung also, Seinn Alleluia or the traditional plainchant Alleluia are both popular (also can be read)
- Offertory Procession: If this is to be sung, it must be a christian piece of music pertaining to the bread and wine that are to be offered at the mass. Take my hands- Sebastian Temple or Lord Accept the gifts we offer would be suitable. Otherwise, instrumental pieces such as Jesu Joy of Mans Desiring – Bach or Aria from Xerxes- Handel are appropriate.
- Mass Settings: If you have acquired a singer- they will sing the eucharistic acclamations – Sanctus (Holy Holy) Memorial Acclamation (Christ has died etc) and Agnus Dei (Lamb of God) These can be any musical setting, the most common being the Seoirse Bodley Mass of Peace or the ‘Lourdes’ Mass setting.
- Sign of Peace: Depending on the couple- this can be a long or a short affair. One wedding we did, the couple exchanged peace with everyone in the church! If sung – Dona Nobis Pacem, make me a channel of your peace, may the road rise to meet you are popular choices or an instrumental piece with an uplifting style can work well such as Minuet by Bocherrini.
- Lighting of the Unity Candle: Often Couples continue on the same thread as the first marraige candle and have the second half of the piece used such as the Nocturne in Eb major by Chopin which has two distinct sections.
- Communion rite: If sung, Panis Angelicus – Franck or Ave Maria- Schubert/Gounod are good choices. Any classical instrumental pieces can be played such as the flower duet – Delibes or Waltz of the flowers – Tchaikovsky. Usually you will need two pieces here – depending on the size of your congregation!
- Signing of the register: The holy mass is now over so any style of music is allowed at this point. Common choices are make you feel my love- Adele, Nobody does it better – Hanslick or They long to be close to you- Carpenters. Usually two pieces needed here.
- Recessional: Every couple differs here. Traditional style – Mendelssohn or Wagner’s Wedding March or alternative – One day like this – Elbow or Viva la vida- Coldplay.
- Music as guests exit the church: Usually the music continues for ten or fifteen minutes after the ceremony has ended with classical uplifting music to keep the mood elevated!
Civil Wedding Ceremony
Your choice of music for a civil ceremony is quite large, infact just about any choice of music is permitted during Civil and Civil Partnership Ceremonies Other than music of a religious nature. Registars will not allow pieces that refer to words such as ‘God’ or ‘Jesus’ in their titles or lyrics. A piece such as ‘Jesu Joy of Man’s desiring’ by Bach would certainly not be considered acceptable by law. Outlined below are the four aspects of the Civil Ceremony at which you may wish to have music. Other options include poetry readings at these points
- Gathering Music: This will usually be fifteen minutes before the bride arrives. If no preference is held by the bride or groom a selection of light romantic classics will be played. Alternatively a selection of the couple’s favourite songs could be played.
- The Processional: This piece often causes the bride most worry! For a civil ceremony however, the processional music is often quite succinct. Good choices are Pachelbel’s Canon in D, Wedding March by Wagner or Trumpet Tune by Purcell.
- Signing of the Register: Here the couple often have a favourite song or a song of ‘special significance’ such as Cavatina from the ‘Deer Hunter’ or ‘All I want is you’ – U2. Theme from Romeo & Juliet by Nino Rota is also a popular choice.
- Recessional: Some couples choose traditional pieces to walk out to such as Spring from Vivaldi’s four seasons or wedding march by Mendelssohn and others something lighter such as Por una cabeza- Gardel (from Scent of a woman) It is a very individual choice!
There are other places in the ceremony that you may choose to have a piece of music played as a quiet reflection or instead of a poem/reading.
Here is the running order which may vary slightly and you will see where other possibilities of music could be.
Processional music, Opening words of the officiant, The giving in marraige, Music or/and opening prayer/reading, definition of marraige, wedding vows, music and/or second reading/prayer, Exchange of rings/gifts, music/reading, Lighting of unity candle (music) or other unity ceremony (personalised vows), closing, declaration of marraige, music, introduction of newly weds, photographs (background music) and Recessional.
The choice is endless here, browse our repertoire lists and see if there are any specific requests you may have. We just need an idea of the mood you wish us to create – be it classical in style or jazz and blues/popular.
Visit this site below to listen to popular wedding classics: