You flash your finest smile. You pose with family and friends as the photographer shouts: “ready…smile!” You beam with blissful pride: this is the happiest moment of your life, and the people you love are here to spend this moment with you. Picture-perfect!
Except for one thing that’s missing: the music.
It’s often one of the last things to be considered, and yet music is so essential, it has the power to turn a ho-hum event into a perfect one. Imagine what your wedding would feel like without the right music for your guests to relate to and reminisce with. Music is instrumental in creating the priceless, magical moments found in these once-in-a-lifetime celebrations.
Does canned music make the cut? If you’re on a tight budget, it’s certainly better than nothing. But a wedding is one of those occasions that warrant the warmth and energy of a live performance by a full vocal ensemble. Occasional solos and duets are great, but multiple voices singing in harmony possess that extra oomph – a rich dimensionality that highlights the profound joy inherent in every wedding. There’s nothing quite as eloquent or as moving as a beautiful arrangement properly sung by seasoned singers.
As a vocal group that’s sung at weddings for years, we offer you these tips to make your wedding day – whether grand and sophisticated, or simple and intimate – your Best Day Ever:
Consider commissioning a special vocal arrangement of your song for your bridal march.
We’ve had requests ranging from Taylor Swift’s “Love Story” to Abba’s “Dancing Queen” to Hotdog’s “Ikaw ang Ms. Universe ng Buhay Ko.” Specially arranged songs can be equal parts touching and unique – and are 100% memorable.
Talk to your church early to find out if they have any guidelines or restrictions on the kind of songs they allow.
If you’re Catholic, know that some churches only allow liturgical songs. Don’t feel too bad if your church is one of them. Many of these songs are beautiful, and can provide even greater meaning and depth to your wedding. Your vows, after all, aren’t just made before God; they’re made with Him. As the saying goes, “it takes three to make a marriage work.” So think of this requirement as a little reminder of this essential truth as you start your life together. What’s more, married life is all about self-giving, sacrificial love. So not getting your way in some things, even on the most special day of your life, is good exercise for a happy, lifelong marriage.
Consider your choice of songs for the ceremony vis-à-vis the time allotted for your wedding.
If you want the full shebang, make sure you’ve reserved a good amount of time to allow for all the liturgical songs to be sung, with enough time for unrushed pictorials at the end.
“Noisier” music can be reserved for the reception.
The pictorial session is that in-between moment of happy exchanges: people will want to greet each other and catch-up briefly while pictures are being taken at the altar. The songs at this point should complement this, and love songs and standards are popular choices.
Keep your guests and sponsors in mind when choosing your dinner music.
Include in your list melodies that appeal to your ninongs and ninangs, parents, and even your grandparents. Your wedding certainly is your day, but it’s a celebration too of all those who have been (and will continue to be) a big part of your life. Make this a celebration for everyone.
Live performances are only as good as the sound system used
We can’t stress this enough – so check if your venue uses one of good quality (generally speaking, churches have a better chance of this than reception venues). A karaoke machine will not churn out elegant, wedding-worthy music, no matter how good your musicians are. When in doubt, obtain the services of a reputable provider (if you don’t know any, your coordinator or musicians can suggest reliable ones they’ve already worked with). Make sure to ask for an experienced sound technician – the most advanced audio equipment will be worthless in the hands of a beginner. Musicians have a standard technical rider that outlines their minimum requirements, and sound system providers will need this list in order to provide the necessary equipment.
Musicians will often have a repertoire of songs that they’ve already performed.
So you don’t need to worry about having a specific list ready for them. If you ask for their recommendation, they will choose the songs that they sound best in, and that audiences have responded well to – a win for everyone!
There are lots of things that can stress you out in planning for your wedding day – your music need not be one of them, especially when you follow these tips and get musicians that have been tried and tested specifically in the wedding circuit. And if there’s one thing you should always remember throughout all the planning, it’s this: your wedding is but one day in an entire lifetime of togetherness. So as you plan for it, don’t measure things according to what’s on the surface – love is the most important yardstick of all.