Guest Post | String vs. Pipes at a Church Ceremony

Today I have Amy from the Bossard Quartet, sharing with us about which parts of a church ceremony are best to utilize a string quartet (which she plays in) and which parts are best left to the organist. Useful information to know! Thanks for being here Amy!

Stacy Reeves Photography via Style Me Pretty

We love playing a church wedding ceremonies. Strings sound great in a church with the building’s natural acoustics perfectly complimenting our sound. Many couples choose to hire us to provide music for the bride’s walk-in, signing of the register and the walk-out.If you are having hymns as part of your service, we sometimes get asked if we can play the hymns so that the congregation can sing along with us. In general, we don’t think this works all that well. We are a lot quieter than an organ, and our sound can get lost if everyone is singing along with us. The wonderful thing about church organs is that they are loud enough to keep everyone going at the same speed, and to come in at the beginning of each verse at the right time. It’s never precise with a large congregation, but an organ surrounds the church and allows people to sing along with confidence.So, we strongly recommend using a church organist to accompany your hymns and we will sing along, and be ready to play again for the instrumental moments (signing of the register, and walk-out)

Couples have all kinds of music requests for us to play. In the UK, one of the most popular bridal entrance piece is Pachelbel’s Canon. There’s something about the serene, calming music that many brides love. Other popular requests for the bridal entrance include Des’ree “Kissing You”, JS Bach Joy of Jesu Desiring, Mendelssohn’s wedding march, Eva Cassidy’s Songbird. Quite a mix of modern and classical.

During the signing of the register, popular requests tend to be more upbeat than the bridal entrance. People love hearing things like: Viva La Vida by Coldplay,  God Only Knows by the Beach Boys, Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol, and Bittersweet Symphony by The Verve.

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