Weddings are a time for celebration and the coming together of families. They are a time for rejoicing, meeting new people and marking a milestone in one’s life. A wedding is a day of emotion, change and poignancy, so choosing the music to influence it is vital.

While it’s your wedding day, you have to consider your audience. If you’re a budding trance DJ and want a high energy wedding, that’s great. Just remember that your guests may not. Music choice must be appropriate to the occasion, the listener and the impression you want to create.

If your wedding party is predominantly a young one, you can get away with a more high energy or fun wedding. Families with more older members may risk alienating parents and grandparents if they do this. A balance has to be struck between having the music you want, creating the atmosphere you desire and making your guests feel welcome and comfortable.

Cue the music

Generally, you will have music at the ceremony and reception. Some ceremony venues will have their own organist, or their own PA to play a CD of your choice. Others can provide string quartets or require you to provide your own music. The specifics of what your venues can provide is something you need to find out early.

Wedding ceremony

Usually, music is played at the ceremony venue as guests arrive and are greeted and seated. This music sets the tone for the day to come, so needs to be chosen wisely. Something classical and sensible gets everyone in a serene mood, while something a little livelier can elevate the fun level a bit.

While the Bridal March is the classic music to play as the bride begins her procession, you can actually choose whatever music you like. If you have a song you love, or one with real meaning to you, your future partner or your family, there is absolutely nothing wrong with playing that instead.

You might also choose music for other elements of the ceremony such as the exit. The same consideration should be given here too.

The type of music you choose will influence how people feel, how relaxed they are and their expectations of what’s to come. The music in turn will be influenced by the venue, the type of ceremony and the limitations of the PA. Those are things that will need to be planned well in advance.

Reception music

Wedding receptions are generally more upbeat and are designed to celebrate what just happened. It is much more acceptable to up the tempo, increase the energy or elevate the fun level here.

There are two songs you need to give special attention to when planning your reception music. The first dance, where the bride and father of the bride will dance and the final dance. The first dance should be something meaningful and suitable for the emotion of the moment. It might be good for the bride to decide this with her father.

The final dance can do one of two things. Slow everything down and get everyone ready to leave or speed things up and see the wedding couple off with a flourish. Which you choose is up to you.

Other than that, it’s good to play music for all tastes and all eras. As we said earlier, it may be your wedding day, but you have to consider your audience and what would make them feel happy and welcome.

Band, singer or DJ?

Choosing who to entertain you is just as important as the music they will play. Much depends on the venue, the wedding theme, the average age of the guests, the type of families you are and what you as a now married couple want.

Each type of entertainer can bring something different to proceedings and offer a wide repertoire. That’s especially true if they are experienced in providing wedding entertainment.

Many wedding venues and professionals can provide valuable input into what music to play in given situations and what kind of music goes down well at receptions. While you certainly don’t have to take them at their word, it’s useful information to bear in mind.

As long as you consider the moods you want to create, the places you want to create them in and the people you want to influence, selecting music is probably one of the easier decisions you have to make about your wedding day!