For a wedding ceremony, music is optional but meaningful. Most weddings today have two or three pieces of music, not counting any solos that may be performed as part of the service.
Processional music usually includes one piece for the bridesmaids walking (or being escorted) down the aisle and another for the bride. Sometimes only one is used for both, usually long enough not to need to be replayed. The most common processional (pre-bride) is Pachalbel’s [[Canon in D Major]]. The most common bride’s music is Wagner’s [[Bridal Chorus]], also known as the “Wedding March”, or “Here Comes the Bride”. Another beautiful entrance piece is Bach’s [[Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring]]. Other prelude ideas can be found here and here.
The most common recessional piece is Mendelssohn’s [[Wedding March]]. Other recessional ideas can be found here and here.
Alternate versions of many of these in different styles (string quartet, piano, folk, etc.) can be found with a simple search online. And the selection doesn’t need to be traditional at all. One interesting modern piece a couple used for the recessional was “1, 2, 3, 4” by the Plain White T’s.
A selection of MP3 soundtracks can be found here:
It’s good to have one or two readings during a wedding ceremony, and it can also be used to give someone not already in the wedding party a special role. And if they chicken out, the minister can always do it!
A reading can be ANYTHING … a scripture passage, a poem, a passage from a book.
The most common are readings from the Bible, a selection of which can be found HERE.
Ceremony Examples and Resources