Music for a Civil Wedding

Music is a very important part of your civil wedding ceremony. It lifts and adds to the mood of the occasion, it relaxes people and puts everyone in a good state of mind and it can be heard during the non speaking parts of the civil wedding ceremony. Finally it helps you and your guests remember how special your wedding ceremony was for years to come.

Music for civil wedding ceremonies by civil ceremony law cannot contain or have any relation or reference to sacred music which can be heard in a Church wedding service. This does not limit your choice of music but in fact expands it. The list and variety is endless.

Firstly there is music as your guests arrive into the civil wedding ceremony room. If you are just playing music from a CD then the album would be on in the background. Doing this though doesn?t allow you much room for scope to maybe have the variety you wanted of your chosen special songs. Booking live wedding musicians for your civil wedding ceremony would enable you to do just that.

To cater for all age groups, musical tastes and musical genre. Live musicians could play a selection from classical, contemporary, musicals or modern during the ten or twenty minutes while your guests saunter into the civil ceremony room, find their seat then sit down to chat while they wait for the proceedings to begin.

The Bride’s Entrance
The bride’s entrance plays quite a significant role. It not only lets your groom and guests know that you have arrived and are waiting to enter the civil ceremony room but the first bars of the melody are also an indication and prompt for you to enter! You will be advised on this by your escorts of the venue you have booked so you do not have to decide yourself! The bride’s entrance music generally should be slow to steady in tempo as you and your bridesmaids, pageboys, flower girls or matrons of honour walk the aisle with you.

Remember you’ll usually be walking up in a long floor length dress maybe with a corset too, new shoes,  a tiara and veil whilst you hold your bouquet and have your other arm linking the person who is giving you away. All your guests are eager to see you, your dress and your bridal entourage so you really don’t need to rush but to take it slow and enjoy the moment feeling like a princess for the day.

Choices Of Music For The Bride’s Entrance
Remember that the bride’s entrance will more than likely not be heard all the way through as the aisles in civil ceremony rooms are not very long. Suitable choices of music for the bride’s entrance could be from a classical style such as…

  • The Wedding March – Wagner (Here Comes The Bride)
  • Sonata Theme – Mozart
  • Cannon In D – Pachelbel
  • The Flower Duet – Delibes

If you prefer to not have classical you could have anything that seems appropriate taking into account the slow speed and bridal entrance. Maybe consider pieces such as…

  • Scarborough Fair – Simon and Garfunkal
  • Somewhere – Bernstein
  • Three Times A Lady – The Commodores
  • Cavatina – John Williams
  • Have I Told You Lately That I Love You – Van Morrison
  • True Love – Cole Porter

If you have wedding musicians to play for your ceremony, you can rest assure that they will be experienced at stopping the piece at the most appropriate moment when you have reached the top of the aisle to meet your groom. If you have a CD in a machine playing, then make sure the CD does not skip in the machine that will be used in the ceremony room!

Also make sure someone will press the stop button at an appropriate point in the music when you have reached your groom otherwise it could be unfortunate if the CD music stopped too early so you remain walking in silence, or too late so you, the groom, your bridal entourage are all waiting patiently.

The other unfortunate scenario using a CD machine would be for the person to stop the CD just as the CD music is in the middle of a lovely loud chorus! That’s why you can trust your musicians if you book wisely.

Signing Of The Register
The signing of the register music choice is a lot more flexible. The mood is usually lot lighter as you have now become man and wife. During the time you and your groom sign the register no photographs can be taken. It is when you both pose for cameras after signing that the photographs are allowed to be taken.

The music however will start straight away as you and the groom move behind the table to actually sign the register and throughout all the professional and family and friends photography.

It usually takes between three and four pieces of music (depending the length of each song too) to go through the signing of the register. Remember if using a CD machine to make sure the CD’s don’t skip, someone is on hand to change the discs at the appointed time, and they can also finish suitably especially if the final piece has to be cut as you and your groom are ready to walk down the aisle.

Experienced live wedding musicians can cater for all these problems and can even play some extra music in your chosen style should events overrun a little.

For music during the signing you can choose from musicals, films, pop songs, Gaelic songs, the choice is endless and it’s yours!

A few suggestions for the signing of the register are…

  • Classical Style –
  • Little Dance – Haydn
  • Greensleeves – Traditional
  • Minuet – Bach
  • Recuerdos de la Alhambra – Tarrega

Contempory Style…

  • Wind Beneath My Wings – Silba and Henley
  • Songbird – Eva Cassidy
  • The Look Of Love – Bacharach and David
  • What A Wonderful World – Thiele and Weiss
  • This Guy’s In Love With You – Herb Albert
  • And I Love Her – The Beatles

The Bride And Groom’s Exit
The bride and groom’s exit is usually a more up beat number in contrast to the bride’s entrance number which was slower. Suitable suggestions are…

  • Trumpet Voluntary – Jeremiah Clarke
  • Wedding March – Mendelssohn (A Midsummer Night’s Dream)
  • I Get A Kick Out Of You – Cole Porter
  • Can’t Take My Eyes Off You – Andy Williams
  • It Had To Be You – Jones and Kahn
  • Love Is Here To Stay – Gershwin
  • Isn’t She Lovely – Stevie Wonder

Whatever music you choose for your music wedding ceremony remember to check all CD’s you might be using and the machine’s in which they will be played on. CD’s may play very well on your machine at home, but may not play as well in the ceremony room on the venue’s machine. Check with the venue do you have to bring your own machine. If so, remember to have someone reliable to take it back home!

If booking wedding musicians to play for your civil ceremony, remember to give plenty of advance warning want music choices you would like during the ceremony. If you are unsure, they will be happy to discuss this with you from their wide repertoire.

They will usually be open to any new suggestions from you too. Always keep a good communication flowing well in advance so you can leave the music in the musicians territory which they feel comfortable in then that is one less worry for you. This now enables you to relax and concentrate on your special day and enjoy it.

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