Wedding Music and Singing

Wedding Music and Singing

Setting the right tone from the very beginning of your wedding day...

Choosing the right music for your ceremony is such an important factor in planning a wedding. It is the first thing the guests will hear and sets the tone for the rest of the day. To every wedding Sarah brings experience, reliability and excellence of performance. Above all, Sarah aims to make each wedding unique with her singing and to bring a little musical magic to a very special day.

Sarah specialises in being able to sing in any genre and has a very broad selection of songs to suit all tastes, including modern/pop songs, folk, classical, Irish traditional and sacred. See her Song List here. She will guide you through each step of the ceremony, whether it be a church, civil or civil partnership wedding. See below for samples of Civil and Church ceremonies, with music suggestions for each part.

Musicians are provided as part of the service, and typically the most popular instrument to accompany Sarah would be a digital piano.  She also frequently sings with harp, or can arrange groups of instruments for your special day.  Contact her by filling out the form below and she will get straight back to you.

If you have a special request for a song – even if it is in a different language – she will do her absolute best to learn the song for your special day. In fact Sarah has discovered some of her favourite songs through suggestions from brides and grooms. 

From her cd “The Irish Wedding Album”, couples can explore different styles of music and choose the best musician to suit their taste, budget and venue. Have a listen to her CD The Irish Wedding Album below.

Sarah's Recordings

Click below to play some of Sarah Tracks.

Ceremonies

THE CHURCH WEDDING CEREMONY

There are usually 10 parts of the wedding mass where you would have instrumental music or singing. Each part is set out below with some suggestions. Bear in mind, you should run your music list by the priest in question, just in case he has any objections, particularly to any songs that are not hymns sung during the mass. Click on the arrow to reveal music suggestions:

1. Processional:

Can have one instrumental or song here, or two if you have a lot of bridesmaids.  The ideal music should be something you can walk to without being too slow. Some examples: 

  • You Are the Reason (Callum Scott)
  • I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You (Elvis)
  • Feels Like Home (Chantal Kreviazuk)
  • Songbird (Eva Cassidy/Fleetwood Mac)
  • A Thousand Years (Christina Perri)
  • Nella Fantasia/Gabriel’s Oboe (Il Divo/Andrea Bocelli/Sarah Brightman)
  • She Moved Through the Fair (Irish Traditional)
  • All I Ask of You
  • How Long Will I Love You 
  • God’s Plan
  • A Million Dreams
  • Canon in D by Pachelbel Gabriel’s Oboe (instrumental)
  • I Giorni by Einaudi (instrumental)
  • Sky Full of Stars by Coldplay (instrumental, slightly slower version)

2. Lighting of the two candles:

This is very short so a short song or instrumental is usually best.  You can also light memorial candles here for loved ones who have passed away.

  • All of Me (John Legend) 
  • The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face 
  • May it Be 
  • Hallelujah 
  • Pie Jesu
  • An Cúlainn (instrumental)
  • O Mio Babino Caro

3. Psalm:

Can be sung or said, and occurs between the two readings.  A psalm is a sacred song or text, usually from the Book of Psalms. Examples of psalms that are sung:

  • Hiding Place (Mo Ghrá Thú in Irish)
  • Tar Anuas a Spiorad Naomh
  • Yahweh I Know You are Near
  • On Eagles Wings
  • Set Your Heart on the Higher Gifts 
  • Be not Afraid

4. Alleluia

Can be sung or said. Occurs directly after the second reading. 

5. Candle ceremony:

After you are married you both light the middle (marraige) candle. A short piece is ideal here. 

  • May the Road Rise to Meet You, 
  • The Cloud’s Veil, 
  • Ruth’s Song, 
  • When Love is Found 
  • The Prayer (Celine Dion) - shorter version

6. Offertory:

When bringing up the gifts. Usually a hymn is sung here.

  • Ag Chríost an Síol
  • The Cloud's Veil
  • Be Thou My Vision
  • How Great Thou Art
  • Ave Maria
  • A Mhuire Mhathair
  • Bí a Iosa im’ Chríose

7. Sign of Peace:

Can have an instrumental here (as it can be noisy) or a song. It needs to be fairly short. Some songs include: 

  • Make me a Channel of Your Peace
  • Tabhair Dom do Lámh (instrumental)
  • May the Road Rise to Meet You
  • Dona Nobis Pacem
  • The Peace of Christ
  • You By My Side

8. Communion & Reflection:

One or two songs or pieces of music here is ideal, depending on time and size of congregation. Some popular songs include: 

  • Ave Maria (Schubert or Gounod or Caccini) 
  • Nella Fantasia (Tune of Gabriel’s Oboe) 
  • How Long Will I Love You
  • To Make You Feel My Love
  • The Prayer (Celine Dion & Andrea Bocelli)
  • In My Life (The Beatles)
  • A Thousand Years
  • May the Road Rise to Meet You
  • God Bless the Broken Road
  • How Great Thou Art
  • You Raise Me Up 
  • Bí a Iosa im’ Chroíse 
  • When Love is Found 
  • Panis Angelicus 
  • Be Thou my Vision 

9. Signing of the Register:

Ideally one or two songs here. Bear in mind, it usually becomes noisy at this point, and the music may not be heard very well.  You could also have instrumental versions of your favourite songs here if there is time.  

  • What a Wonderful World (Louis Armstrong/Eva Cassidy)
  • True Colours (Cindi Lauper/Glee)
  • The Book of Love (Peter Gabriel/Gavin James)
  • The Power of Love (Il Divo/Frankie Goes to Hollywood)
  • It Had to Be You (Michael Bublé)
  • Your Song (Elton John/Ellie Goulding)
  • Feeling Good (Nina Simone/Michael Bublé)
  • To Make you Feel My Love
  • She Moved Through the Fair 
  • A Thousand Years 
  • The Prayer (Celine Dion & Andrea Bocelli)
  • Caledonia (Dolores Kane)
  • The Rose 
  • Fields of Gold (Sting/Eva Cassidy)
  • Nella Fantasia 
  • Songbird (Eva Cassidy/Fleetwood Mac)
  • The Voyage (Christy Moore)
  • You Raise Me Up 

10. Recessional:

Can have an instrumental piece or a song here, but bear in mind it can be noisy and the soloist may not be heard. Typically something upbeat is best.  

  • It Had to Be You - faster version (Michael Bublé/Frank Sinatra)
  • How Sweet it Is (James Taylor/Michael Bublé)
  • Caravan of Love (Beautiful South)
  • All You Need is Love (The Beatles)
  • Here Comes the Sun (The Beatles)
  • One Day Like This (Elbow)
  • Be My Forever (Ed Sheeran & Christina Perri)
  • I’m in the Mood for Love (Nat King Cole)
  • Fly me to the Moon
  • My Baby Just Cares for Me

Any lively Irish traditional piece such as Haste to the Wedding would be perfect  

THE CIVIL WEDDING CEREMONY

The length and contents of a civil ceremony can vary depending on how many optional extras the couple wish to include, but the main elements are the same. The most important thing to remember is that none of the music, readings, poetry or songs should be religious in any way. Click on the arrow to reveal music suggestions:

Entrance Music (optional)

A fairly long song or instrumental is perfect here. Some examples:

  • You Are the Reason (Callum Scott)
  • I Can’t Help Falling in Love with You (Elvis)
  • Feels Like Home (Chantal Kreviazuk)
  • Songbird (Eva Cassidy/Fleetwood Mac)
  • A Thousand Years (Christina Perri)
  • Nella Fantasia/Gabriel’s Oboe (Il Divo/Andrea Bocelli/Sarah Brightman)
  • She Moved Through the Fair (Irish Traditional)
  • All I Ask of You
  • How Long Will I Love You 
  • A Million Dreams
  • Canon in D by Pachelbel Gabriel’s Oboe (instrumental)
  • I Giorni by Einaudi (instrumental)
  • Sky Full of Stars by Coldplay (instrumental, slightly slower version)

Introduction from registrar

First Candle Ceremony (optional):

A short song or instrumental is perfect at this point. 

  • All of Me (John Legend) 
  • The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face 
  • Black is the Colour
  • May it Be 
  • Hallelujah
  • An Cúlainn (instrumental)
  • O Mio Babino Caro

First Reading (optional)

Declarations

Personal Vows (optional)

Ring Ceremony (optional)

Second Candle Ceremony (optional):

Some examples:

  • Field's of Gold
  • What a Wonderful World (Louis Armstrong/Eva Cassidy)
  • True Colours (Cindi Lauper/Glee)
  • The Book of Love (Peter Gabriel/Gavin James)
  • The Power of Love (Il Divo/Frankie Goes to Hollywood)
  • It Had to Be You (Michael Bublé)
  • Your Song (Elton John/Ellie Goulding)

Second Reading (optional)

Signing of the Register:

One song or piece of music is perfect here.   

  • Feeling Good (Nina Simone/Michael Bublé)
  • To Make you Feel My Love
  • She Moved Through the Fair 
  • A Thousand Years 
  • The Prayer (Celine Dion & Andrea Bocelli)
  • Caledonia (Dolores Kane)
  • The Rose 
  • Fields of Gold (Sting/Eva Cassidy)
  • Nella Fantasia 
  • Songbird (Eva Cassidy/Fleetwood Mac)
  • l'Hymne de l'Amour 

Exit

An upbeat song or instrumental is good here.  Can be followed by another instrumental if there is time.

  • It Had to Be You - faster version (Michael Bublé/Frank Sinatra)
  • How Sweet it Is (James Taylor/Michael Bublé)
  • Caravan of Love (Beautiful South)
  • All You Need is Love (The Beatles)
  • Here Comes the Sun (The Beatles)
  • One Day Like This (Elbow)
  • Be My Forever (Ed Sheeran & Christina Perri)
  • I’m in the Mood for Love (Nat King Cole)
  • Fly me to the Moon
  • My Baby Just Cares for Me

Any lively Irish traditional piece such as Haste to the Wedding would also be perfect  

FAQS

What musician should I use for my choice of songs for my wedding?  How many songs/pieces of music do I need?  What music is suitable/not suitable for the ceremony?  All your frequently asked questions are answered

What musician/musicians should I choose for my wedding?

The musician(s) that you choose is dependant on a few things:

1. The instrument you choose needs to fill out the sound adequately in the venue you have chosen, whether that be a church, a registry office, in a hotel or other building.  Most weddings I sing at will have one instrument, so an instrument that can play several notes at once is best, such as an organ/piano/harp.  Some instruments can only play one note at a time. A flute or a violin for example are lovely solo instruments but wouldn't serve well as the only accompaniment to a singer.  

If you want to add another instrument, then a singer with an organ/piano/harp plus a violin/flute/cello or similar would be a very nice choice.  There are lots of duets/trios/quartet instrumental groups available out there that provide wonderful music for a wedding and can play stunning instrumentals as well as accompanying a singer.  Check out the sample of Songbird in the left panel for an example of singer plus piano with violin.  If you have another instrument in mind just let Sarah know and she will do her best to accommodate you.

2. Size of venue and quality of the instrument in the venue. If you are getting married in a large church or other venue then an Irish Harp with a singer is probably not going to be loud enough, whereas an organ or piano should be.  Also if you are using the organ or keyboard in the venue just make sure it is in good enough condition, used regularly and you can use it on the day.  The venue manager/priest/sacristan should be able to advise on this.

3. The choice of songs.  If you are leaning towards a more Irish selection of songs then perhaps a more Irish instrument such as a harp, or combination of instruments such as harp and violin would be a good choice.  Similarly if you find yourself choosing more classical music then an organ or piano would be best, or a combination of stringed instruments would be lovely.  Some classical pieces don't suit the Irish harp so consider your music choice before you decide on the musician.

4. Your budget.  Whether you choose one instrument, a duo, trio or quartet the cost will vary so bear this in mind when thinking of booking a musician.  If you are thinking of a quartet but the price is out of your budget, ask the group would they consider playing with two or three musicians instead.

Do I really need a musician?

Without a doubt a singer with an instrument will always sound bigger and better than a singer on his/her own. When you sing unnacompanied you are immediately restricted as to the type of songs you can sing and it also lends an air of seriousness to a ceremony where people may feel they have to be very quiet. If that is what you're after, great.  If not, booking a musician is a good investment for your important day.

Check Availability

    Some Kind Words

    Testimonials

    Hi Sarah! Just wanted to thank you for being such a fantastic part of our big day on 15th Dec, everyone complimented the music-you, Deirdre & Irina [musicians] were superb! Please pass on our thanks to both ladies, wishing u a very happy new year & thanks so much again.

    Hollie & Leo

    Just getting in touch to say thank you so much for the lovely music on Friday. I can’t wait to hear it on the video!

    Orlaith & Barry

    David and I both wanted to thank you for your beautiful singing at our wedding mass. You really do have the voice of an angel and it created such a special atmosphere for both of us and for our family and friends. Not only did we love it, but so many of our guests have told me how beautifully you sang and how much they enjoyed it. Thank you again for being such an important part of our wedding day

    Catriona and David

    We are just touching base to say a massive thank you to both you & Anne (pianist) for the music on our wedding day. We were delighted with the entire ceremony. Our guests commented on how lovely the music was and having recently watched the DVD we genuinely could not have asked for more. Thank you for all your help in the build up to the day, and for the music on our day

    Adrian and Sinead

    I wanted to say a huge thank you from me and Paul. You were absolutely incredible on Friday: made the ceremony for both of us. I was totally engrossed in your music. We've had so many compliments on your performance. We're both chuffed to bits.

    Frances & Paul

    Dear Sarah - you were absolutely wonderful! You really made the ceremony for us and all our guests. We had a fantastic day. Thanks again.

    Heidi & John

    Dear Sarah, Thank you so much for the beautiful music at our wedding. It was fabulous. Please pass our thanks on to the musician also.

    Claire-Louise & Pierce

    Thank you so much for singing at our wedding. Your voice is just magical, you were a true professional & all our guests commented on how beautiful all our songs were.Loved all the songs and how relaxed your singing made me. Lots of love

    Fiona & Ivan

    Ballyea, Co Clare

    Just wanted to send you an email to thank you so much for your amazing singing for our wedding on the 5th May in Quilty Church. We got our wedding video today and your singing was out of this world, it gave us goosebumps listening back. Thank you so very much for all your patience with me before the wedding and the fantastic music on the day.

    Niamh & Sean

    Up