WEDDING CEREMONY MUSIC GUIDE
"Eric was the pianist for our March 28, 2009 wedding. He was absolutely amazing! I was having trouble
finding a song for the groomsmen and bridesmaids to walk down the aisle to. I was in love with the song
“River Flows in You”. However, I wasn't sure if it would work because the end of the song
was kind of depressing. Eric assured me that it would work and changed the end of the song to sound
more upbeat! I even liked his version of the song better than the original! He even was nice enough to
write a blog about our wedding and music selection. All of our guests raved about how beautiful the
music was at our wedding. He is a very gifted pianist and I would highly recommend him!"
|Nicole, Baughman Center, Gainesville, March 2008
This Printable Wedding Music
Planning Form is designed to assist you in planning your ceremony music as you
listen through the audio on this page.
Please note that the audio tracks provided here include samples of songs as
well as wedding tips and recommendations based on my many years of experience playing for weddings. My hope is that this
effort helps simplify some of the many decisions that
couples face as they plan their weddings, and helps
couples plan ceremonies that flow seamlessly and beautifully.
Please see my blog for more wedding
The Prelude begins 30
minutes before the start of the ceremony as your guests arrive. I am always prepared with extra music as there
are often last-minute details that take longer than anticipated.
Good news - as an experienced wedding pianist, I expertly plan the Prelude for
I play a
beautiful, non-stop tapestry of music that will wonderfully set the mood for your guests. Blending a
pleasing variety of songs that transition from one to another well is more complicated than it may seem.
I carefully select a mix of songs from different styles and eras that will have something that all
your guests will recognize/enjoy. This background music will allow comfortable conversation as
*I recorded this sample
a few years ago. I regularly update/rotate the songs I use for the Prelude, so the songs you'll hear on this
sample will likely be different from what I play during your Prelude. No two preludes are exactly alike, but
this sample will give you a good taste of the style to expect.
Frequently Asked Questions about the
"How much input should we give about the
songs you play in the Prelude?"
Most couples don't select any of the music for the Prelude. If
you know that many/most of your guests prefer a certain type of music (like classical, country, 80s, oldies,
church songs, etc) I'm happy to emphasize that style. But I'll mix in some other styles as well
because you'll almost certainly have guests that will enjoy those too. If there's a style you want me to
avoid, please tell me, and I'm happy to honor that. Also, some couples prefer (or are getting married at
a church that requires) only Christian and classical music during their Prelude. As a long-time
church musician I'm more than happy to honor this request. But generally the mix I've developed over my
years of experience works beautifully.
"What if we've got some favorite songs we'd
like you to include?"
First of all, remember that you (and your closest family members) probably
won't hear the Prelude (or not much of it, anyway). The members of the wedding party will be waiting
for their entrance, and close family members are usually seated after the Prelude. So if there are some
songs that are very special for you, I'd encourage that we either incorporate them into the ceremony (as a
family entrance song or for the wedding party's entrance or even bride's entrance, etc) or that you have them
played at your reception when you can actually hear and enjoy them.
If you're looking through my song list and see
some songs that you want to be sure are included, I'm happy to do that. Also feel free to ask about any
song you don't see on the list - I add songs every week but only update the website list occasionally (besides,
the list was never intended to be exhaustive). If you really want me to include a song that I don't already
know during the Prelude I'll be happy to try to find the music and learn it for you at a cost of $40/song. To
learn a song well enough to get it to the standard of my other Prelude songs takes a fair amount of time.
However, incorporating a special song as one of the entry songs later in the ceremony is no extra
summarize, the Prelude is background music to set an appropriate ambience for your
arriving guests. I've priced my wedding package assuming that I will
select the Prelude music from my extensive repertoire. If you would like to design a
mini-concert for me to play instead, I'll need to charge $40 for each song you select for the Prelude that
I don't already know, since that will entail much more work than a standard wedding.
Seating of the
1) No special song; seat family as part of the
2) Canon In
D by Pachelbel
3) Jesu, Joy of Man's
Desiring by J.S. Bach
Entrance of the
Groom, Officiant, and Attendants
1) One of the songs above (my favorite for this point in the ceremony is Bach's Jesu, Joy of Man's
2) Praeludium by J.S. Bach
"Bridal Chorus" from Lohengrin by Wagner
Prince of Denmark's March (also known as Trumpet Voluntary) by Clarke
want some music while you light a unity candle or for some other transition within the ceremony. I can
play an elegant accompaniment to enhance the transition time, and fit precisely the time you need, so you
aren't standing awkwardly, waiting for the music to end.
I have an extensive repertoire of wedding songs
that I can play and sing myself, or accompany your soloists. I don't charge extra for solos that I do,
but there is a charge of $50 per song to accompany other soloists. I can also arrange songs to highlight
your favorite portions if you'd like to include a song, but want to reduce the length of the song,
as some couples find that an entire song, with all its repetitions, feels a bit long as they stand
1) "Wedding March" from Midsummer Night's
Dream by Mendelssohn (traditional)
"Ode to Joy" from the Ninth Symphony by Beethoven (my
Review of the whole ceremony
I've played for many beautiful weddings with
all the music chosen right from this Guide. For other couples, this Guide is a starting point.
These selections are very popular, but I am by no means limited to these songs. I have an extensive
repertoire, and am happy to help you customize your ceremony music with your favorite music. Let's discuss
your vision for your wedding and we'll design just the right blend of music
for your special day!
"We could not have asked for or imagined our music to come out as well as Eric played for us. His
singing and music was absolutely perfect. He clearly knows a lot about weddings and was even able to
guide us in which parts of the ceremony we would need songs and other parts where we might just need
some musical interlude. These were things of which we hadn't thought. He is very professional and is
able to accomodate most any request not only easily but with an impressive amount of grace that really
placed us at ease. We knew after sitting with Eric that the music was taken care of. We just didn't
have to think of it again. Our ceremony was indoors with a classical piano. He played beautifully and
was able to accomodate any type of song we requested. All in all, our wedding has left us with
wonderful memories and Eric's music was great in accentuating all of it."
|Howard, Church Wedding, Orlando, March 2009
"Eric was quite the professional from the beginning communication before the ceremony to work out the
details to the day of the wedding. His music was flowing and flawless and enhanced the beauty of the
day. Being a musician myself, I would not hesitate to recommend him."
|Beverly, Mother of the Bride, Baughman Center, Gainesville, October 2008