Live wedding music adds a personal touch to your special day.  Consider live entertainment for your wedding ceremony, transitions, cocktail hour, dinner and reception. Providing entertainment for your wedding guests is more than an experience. In short, it’s also a thank you for being part of your best day ever. We consulted with Andrea Rowlison of Music Remembrance for advice on being more creative with powerful live wedding music.

Live Wedding Music options

Ceremony Music

Live entertainment at your wedding ceremony is perhaps the most traditional and popular way to incorporate your personal style. The performers or instruments you choose put your personal stamp on the entire ceremony. 

For your walk down the aisle there is nothing more elegant  than processing to the music of live instruments.  You can choose a classic string quartet performing grand and graceful classical music. Or a string quartet performing your favorite punk rock songs.  In fact, the sky is the limit for the kind of music and the variety of ensembles available.  Professional ensembles will be able to fill requests for any song or music style.  Andrea says in Central Florida, the options are endless. First trombone choir, saxophone with guitar or swing band. Then Irish fiddler, Italian opera vocalist or accordion. Further mandolin and almost anything else you can dream of. 

Here are some suggestions to help you choose the perfect option for your live wedding music:

  1. Violin
  2. String Quarter, Trio or Duo
  3. Violin, Guitar and Upright Bass String Trio. This ensemble performs everything from classical and Irish to country and heavy  metal
  4. Brass Quintet or Brass Quartet
  5. Fanfare Trumpets. Great for a dramatic fanfare before the bride walks down the aisle. Not suited for long melodic songs.
  6. Small Orchestra or Symphony Orchestra. The couple looking for something dramatic and original should consider an orchestra. That is to say the sound of an orchestra cannot be outdone.
  7. Guitar
  8. Organ or Piano
  9. Harp
  10. Flute
  11. Vocalist
  12. Themed ensemble

live entertainment for wedding day transitions

Wedding day transitions are when you move from one part of the event to another.  As an example, moving the guests from the ceremony to the cocktail hour. Couple this movement with a parade of live performers and you are sure to have a dramatic flare. Additionally a parade into or out of the ceremony will provide a memorable moment for your wedding guests. Of course there is the New Orleans Style Parade Band. But have you considered these options – marching band, flash mob, dance troupe or even a drum line. Additionally a fanfare of trumpets to announce that dinner is being served. 

live music and parade for wedding reception

Cocktail Hour

Imagine your guests sipping cocktails and enjoying appetizers. Add to that a live musician or music ensemble.  Now you have created an atmosphere to match your wedding style. Along with any of the aforementioned musical options, there are also strolling violinist, jazz pianist and singers. Further this experience by providing unique live musical entertainment. For instance, Italian musicians to enhance Italian food or wedding theme. Similarly, a French duo to enhance a French wedding theme. Last, but not least, a Dixieland band for Great Gatsby theme.

Entertainment does not have to specifically be musicians. As an example, live artist painting scenes from the cocktail hour or caricature artist. But wait, there is more.  For instance, live cocktail tables (women with large table-like skirts with cocktails) and character actors mingling with guests and posing for pictures.

Champagne girl entertains wedding guests at cocktail hour
live wedding painter

During Dinner Service

During dinner live entertainment sets the perfect tone. Keep it in the background with soft music by a combination group. So as not to disturb dinner service and conversation.  On the flip side, a full dinner show with a big band with singer or a band with a celebrity or celebrity impersonator. In fact, you can have a dinner theater. Or even a mystery dinner show.  

live wedding music during Reception

Your wedding reception is the time to let loose and have fun with your guests. Choose unique entertainment like a disco band or sock hop band. Speak with your performers in advance to ensure they can play all your favorite dance songs.

live wedding music ensemble

The Big Surprise

Surprise your loved ones with a singing telegram with custom song lyrics. Have it presented to your parents or loved ones during the rehearsal dinner, wedding dinner or reception. Thus providing an unforgettable “thank you”. Indeed there will not be a dry eye in the house.  Want to do something extra special for your new spouse?  A surprise romantic serenade of a song written for them will be personal and magical.

romantic serenade for live wedding music
live wedding music guitarist

Be Creative

Be original. Choose a music style that reflects you. Country, classical and jazz to name just a few. Additionally, mix it up by having your live wedding music style played by non-traditional instruments. 

Real Wedding Examples

Andrea shares this special request story. Music Remembrance was asked to recreate the wedding scene from “Love Actually”.   The musicians stood up and joined in one by one performing the song “All You Need Is Love”.  It’s been several years since this wedding, but I’m sure their guests remember that unique performance! Similarly she shares this story about dancers. “One of the most breathtaking weddings that I ever performed for had an elegantly dressed dance troupe performing in the church aisles.  They danced to a brass quintet performing ‘Simple Gifts’ with beautifully colored scarves that flowed in the lights.  At the end of the ceremony the dancers led the bride, groom and wedding party down the aisle down dancing with tall dancing colorful kites to joyful pipe organ music.” 
On a smaller scale, a solo dancer is a really memorable and beautiful dancing to special music. 

dancers as live entertainment for wedding ceremony
live entertainment for weddings dancers Orlando

Using live entertainment at weddings is a great way to personalize your wedding day.  A dramatic walk down the aisle to a chamber orchestra or a cool jazz atmosphere for your cocktail hour can make your day truly personal and memorable for your guests. Choose the live entertainment that best reflects your personals style as a couple and create an atmosphere that your wedding guests will remember for years to come.

For more wedding planning inspiration and ideas, visit the I Said Yes! Wedding Inspo Blog

Blog contributor. Andrea Rowlison, Music Coordinator/Owner of Music Remembrance. Provider of professional musicians, bands and music ensembles for weddings, events, musical serenades and singing telegrams in Florida.

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