The atmosphere on your wedding day is going to change at different times, so choosing appropriate music is crucial!

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When you’re in the ceremony, it’s likely to be more formal and serious. After all, you’re getting legally married and that’s a big deal. One the legal proceedings have finished then mood will change to be much more lighthearted.

At your wedding reception, there’s an atmosphere of anticipation. Everybody is looking forward to enjoying themselves and catching up with old friends and meeting new people. This all means that you need to consider what music you should play at your wedding quite carefully. Most importantly, you need to consider just who you have invited to your wedding and their age ranges.

Different music for different times

The ceremony

If you’re having a church wedding you need to think about the hymns. You may have some favourites and it’s always good to have a well-known hymn so that everybody can join in.

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If you’re having a civil ceremony, opt for some soft and romantic music to walk down the aisle too. Please be aware that your registrar will need to check the the pieces you’ve chosen because you’re not allowed any religious connotations in the music.

The wedding breakfast

When your guests are arriving for the wedding breakfast you should create a cool, sophisticated atmosphere to welcome guests. A string quartet or harpist playing softly in the background are perfect for creating the right mood.

When you brief your musicians, let them know if you have any favourites you want them to include and think about popular classics that your guests will know. If you’re not very familiar with classical music, then ask the musicians what they recommend, or see if they can play instrumental versions of your favourite songs.

The evening reception

When the speeches are done it’s party time. Some people will want to let their hair down and dance the night away, others will want to gossip at the table and hear the latest news from people they haven’t seen for a while. Kids will want to join in the fun too and at some point and eventually you may want to introduce a romantic atmosphere and enjoy your first dance together.

Brief your entertainment

Whether you’re having a live band, a DJ, or maybe even both, you need to look at your guestlist very carefully and split up everybody into age groups. You might be a fan of Kanye West but it’s unlikely that your Grandma is.

If you’ve chosen an experienced DJ or a band, ask them what they’re favourite floorfillers are. The oldies might enjoy The Beatles or The Rolling Stones, others might love Seventies’ sounds, or a bit of Duran Duran. It may not be entirely your cup of tea but at the end of the day you want to keep your guests happy.

As for the teenagers and young adults, think about current chart-toppers that will get them on the floor dancing.

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You might like to also think about the impact that Strictly Come Dancing has made. It’s inspired some couples to take up ballroom dancing lessons and your grandparents might surprise you by how good they are at dancing! So consider having a classic waltz, quickstep or even tango included on the playlist. Some couples love to show off their footwork.

Make sure the DJ plays what you want, not what they want to play. Get your music right and you’ll have an amazing atmosphere at your wedding reception and a crowded dance floor, which is just what you’re aiming for really, isn’t it?