Music for your Ceremony

Having conducted and officiated at hundreds of wedding ceremonies, I can tell you that your choice of music is an absolutely key factor in the success of a ceremony.  Aside from the vows, and the wording of the wedding ceremony itself, music really is the next most important aspect and needs careful consideration.

Flute and Musical NotationAnd it’s not just the pieces you choose but how it is played.  Think about whether you want to have live music, for instance a harpist, string quartet or small band.  Perhaps recorded music is what you prefer, via a CD player or playlist on your iPod.  However, even the best behaved music players provided by your venue will occasionally get hiccups and I have been in the embarrassing position of pressing Play and nothing happening more than once.   And it has always been at the most crucial moment as the entrance of the bride is announced to the room of awaiting guests!

As an Independent Celebrant I want to ensure that this never happens to my clients so have invested in a very robust outdoor portable PA system with a long battery life which packs a mean punch when the volume’s cranked up!  It also enables me to take it into the middle of a forest or on a beach where there’s little likelihood of an electric socket being available.

My PA allows me to play music from a smart phone, USB memory stick or SD card and musicians may hook up to it to amplify their own instrument or voice.  I always take it on my rehearsals so that we can have a sound check prior to the big day.  It’s the only way to ensure stress-free music!

Just for fun, here’s a link to the Top 30 Wedding “First Dance” list with videos … enjoy!

Top 30 First Dance Wedding Songs of 2013

Outdoor Ceremonies

I love to conduct outdoor weddings for my clients, and am becoming well known for these.  Most of the couples who contact me wish to hold a truly outdoor wedding, often in a place where there is no civil licence.

A particular favourite is The House Meadow at Worsenden Farm near Biddenden, Kent.  It is set on a working stud farm but is a complete blank canvas for brides to dress the way they want.  Lots of couples like the relaxed vibe at the farm, and hire yurts, tents and marquees to give a festival type feel, often taking over the venue for the whole weekend.

Check out The House Meadow website for further details  House Meadow

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Ceremony area in the rustic Gazebo 

on the Pond at the House Meadow

Christina and Ben hired me to conduct their outdoor wedding ceremony at Hadlow Manor Hotel, a Grade II listed Georgian manor house, near Tonbridge.  We held the ceremony on the lawn in the beautiful hotel grounds.

Take a look at Hadlow Manor’s video showreel on their homepage here

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We arranged the seating in a semi

circle with a wide aisle

underneath the shade of the large tree

 

 

 

I conducted a romantic wedding for Nick and Katie at Wilderness Wood, Hadlow Down in East Sussex in the summer of 2013.  Wilderness Wood is 62 acres of award winning sustainable woodland and the ceremony was held “streamside” a 10 minute hike to the car park! A unique back to nature experience!

Wilderness Woods

 

The Chestnut Pole Pavilion

at Wilderness Wood

decorated for a wedding reception

 

 

 

A lot of couples wish to hold a ceremony in their own home.  I was asked to write and conduct a Renewal of Vows Ceremony to celebrate a Ruby Wedding Anniversary for Viv & Keith in their beautiful garden in West Malling this year.

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Viv had created a beautiful arbour in

the garden decorated with flowers

under which we held the ceremony