Hire musicians for your New England Wedding Ceremony

Learn about about the importance of wedding music at you ceremony or reception and decide which musical group will best serve your needs. Hire one of our experienced wedding ensembles:

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Selecting your own special music for your wedding can be a gratifying experience. Carefully selected music helps create the atmosphere that makes the wedding uniquely your own. There are usually two distinct types of music played at weddings. First there is the majestic or lilting music to be sung or played during the ceremony. Secondly, there is the entertaining lively music to be played at the reception. Sometimes two separate sets of musicians need to be engaged. At other tmes, the muscians
are versatile and are able to play both kinds of music for the ceremony
and the reception. One may also use live musicians for the ceremony and a disk jockey or electronic music for the reception, or vice versa.

Music for the Ceremony in Church

The variety of music and combination of instruments used today is unbelievable! No longer is organ music and a soloist the only choice, but any kind of string and horn instruments can be used effectively. Yes, there are still restrictions. which vary from church to Church. It is is important, therefore, that the selections and the instruments to be played be discussed thoroughly on the first visit to the clergy man's office. Sometimes he will refer the bridal couple to the organist, choir master or soloist to advise on the selections which may or may not be played during the ceremony. For instance, the Eaststern Orthodox churches allow only vocal music, and Quakers allow no music whatsoever. The half hour prior to the cermony is the time during which the mood is set. During this prelude, favorite music, popular or classical is usually included as well as vocal or instrumental solos. A solo may be sung just after the mother of the bride is seated When selecting a soloist it is advisable to have a professional or an experienced singer who will not panic. A soloist hired for the occasion is paid. If the soloist, or organist, as the case may be, is a
relative or friend the situation becomes a little tricky. You may offer to pay the soloist, and then let it be his or her decision to accept the offer or not. Sometimes a professional who might charge a substantial fee, will give the gift of song to the bridal couple instead of a standard gift-wrapped wedding present. If the soloist is obviously a member of the wedding party, then a gift to him or her is appropriate. After the prelude the Processional begins and the music at this time is joyful dignified and majestic with a regular beat, so you'll feel comfortable walking slowly and in time with the music. When the wedding party reaches the altar to music that announces her music is played softly during the exchange of marriage vows, but this is a matter of individual choice and church rule. At the end of the ceremony the recessional begins and this is triumphant and a slightly quicker tempo than the processional . It might be fun to go to a record shop and ask to hear a record of wedding music and make your own
selections . Most music stores also have books containing processionals and recessionals for weddings. Or, an experienced musician who often plays at weddings may be used as a resource person to help set your mind at ease.

Music for the Ceremony In a private setting

There are, of course, no restrictions but your own good taste when it comes to music in your home, club or social hall. A harpist, guitarist or a trio of any kmd always helps to set the mood-and so do records! When hiring musicians, be sure to discuss what they will be wearing. You will want the musicians dress to blend correctly with the tone of your wedding. Also, allow plenty of set-up time for instruments. Its better to have them
waiting for you than for you to be waiting for them!

Musk for the Reception

Music is crucial to setting the mood at you reception. Decide what kind of mood you want to create, and then find the musicians to create it. Your personal preference, whether you choose light classical pieces or current popular songs, is your best choice. It is helpful if you give the musicians a list of songs to play and enough time to learn the music. Also, warn the band if Uncle Jœ is apt to get up and play the saxophone during the reception. It will be much easier on the band leader to be forewarned. Music serves as a pleasant background while guests pass through the receiving line, and if there's dancing afterwards, music the glue that holds the party together. For people who enjoy good conversation and food more than dining a classical string quartet may create an interesting baroque effect. lf you cannot audition the musicians live, most professional groups or individuals have tapes you can listen to before you engage them. They will probably want to check the size of the room and the acoustics so they will select the right instrument.

Recording the Ceremony on Tape

''Oh, I wish we had taped the music" is a feeling that is often expressed after the wedding. During the ceremony, because of the high emotional level, the couple may not actually hear the music played. Therefore, taping the music and the service is worth considering for future enjoyment . It is also particularly nice in case an older member of the family cannot attend or to play back for someone who has been far away. Recording the musk and ceremony is useful also, if one orders ''still'' photographs of the wedding which may be transferred to video tapes by professional photographers.

Where to Find Your Musicians

For a church wedding your minister will be able to help you.
When the wedding or reception takes place at home, in a private club or hall, in a hotel, or any private room and you are not familiar with local musicians, check the Yellow Pages of the telephone book for listings of local music teachers' associations or the musicians' union. Other good sources are the music department of a local college or university. Music stores usually have a list of names to recommend.

Setting Fees

Musicians usually set their own fees according to their ability and experience, and it's good to remember that their time involved should be taken into consideration. If the musicians are going to be present at the rehearsal, and if they need time to practice special music or rehearse with other instrumentalists, the charge is more, naturally.
Musicians will expect to take a break during the reception and be given something to eat and drink. This matter should be discussed early during negotiations. And finally, sign a written contract, probably with a down payment, and arrange for final payment in cash or by check when they are through playing.

Suggested Wedding Music

Prelude Music

Choose one or two favorite songs to set the mood. Combine these with traditional selections which include classical as well as popular tunes. We suggest, ''Theme from Romeo and Juliet'' by Tchaikovsky or the contemporary arrangement of Nino Rota. A vocal selection, such as ''Sunrise, Sunset" from Fiddler on the Roof, may be sung while parents and grandparents are being seated.

Processional Music

A traditional majestic march played for the wedding party as they proceed down the aisle helps carry the spirit of all those present to the altar. Two favorite compositions are, ''Wedding March'' by Alexander and ''Marche Nuptiale'' by Allan Caron. The familiar bridal chorus from Lohengrin by Wagner, as well as the recessional ''Wedding March'' from " A Midsummer Nights Dream by Mendelssohn, were at one time considered inappropriate to be played in church because of the pagan nature of the drama. However, since Vatican II, restrictions have been lifted from these popular melodies, and they are played regularly at many weddings.

Wedding Ceremony Music

Selections played or sung during the ceremony are extremely variable depending solely on the couple's preferences. Popular classical examples are ''Ich liebe dich'' by Grieg and ''The Lord's Prayer" by Malotte. A current favorite that is frequently sung is the ''Wedding Soog" published by Warner Brothers.

Recessional Music

Teh joyful spirit of the recessional music carries the wedding
party up the aisle after the ceremony. Classical music selections often played are the Wedding March by Mendelssohn and Trumpet Voluntary in D by Purcell.

Reception Music

Any sentimental favorite that cannot be induced in the
wedding ceremony may be played during the reception. Some examples are ''Endless Love'' by Lionel Richie, 'Longer' by Daniel Fogelberg and 'Feelings'' by Morris Albert. Other songs to be considered are ''On a wonderful Day Like Today" ''Someone to Watch Over Me,'' and ''The Girl That I marry".
Second Wedding Music Selections for prelude and wedding ceremony music are the same as those played at a first wedding. There are common vocal solos that are sentimental favorites of all those caught up in the beauty and romance of love. The main differences lie in the selection of processional and recessional music. In second weddings, choices lean toward non-traditional and lighter selections such as the ''WestminsterAbbey Hymn" by Purcell or "Jesu, Joy of Man's desiring" by Bach for the processional or the theme from ''Water Music'' by Handel for a recessional.

CONTACT US: Con Fuoco Music, Management and Booking, Cari Peno, Tel. 617 359 4248, e-mail: info@confuocomusic.com  
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