This guide is designed to help you select and locate music suitable for your wedding. It lists recordings and printed music available in the University of Virginia Music Library. It does not attempt to be all-inclusive but tries to be representative of the types and styles of music available for weddings of all kinds.
You should consult with your organist and/or musicians as early in the planning process for your wedding as you can. They can provide valuable advice about which of the pieces listed here (or other music you may choose) will sound best in your church or wherever your wedding will take place.
The selections included here are grouped in several ways. First there is a list of pieces for which you can listen to brief excerpts on your computer, if your Web browser and computer are equipped to play back recorded sound. These files are stored in .AIF format. Copyright regulations and limitations of disk space prohibit the Library from making entire recordings available via this Web document. You are welcome to come to the Music Library, however, and listen to these pieces in their entirety.
Following the excerpt list is a discography of recordings in the Music Library that contain wedding music, including the pieces excerpted here. Compact disc, record, and tape numbers found in the category lists below also refer to this discography.
Next, there are listings by several categories of music, including
Finally, there is a list of magazine articles that discuss how to go about choosing appropriate music for your wedding and other considerations relating to hiring musicians.
In addition to using this document, you may wish to consult a staff member in the Music Library about any questions you have regarding wedding music and how to obtain it. You may do so in person or by calling the Library at 924-7041 or by sending electronic mail to MUSICLIB@VIRGINIA.EDU. The Music Library welcomes your comments regarding the usefulness of this document and your suggestions for additional titles to include or ways to make it more useful.
Note: These files are stored in .AIF format.
- Bist du bei mir -- Bach [1.23M] (CD4425, Track 6)
- Canon -- Pachelbel [617K] (CD2565, Track 6)
- Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring (from Cantata No. 147) -- Bach [1.01M] (CD670, Track 7)
- Processional (from The Sound of Music) [507K] (CD1361, Track 14)
- Sheep May Safely Graze -- Bach [816K] (CD3410, Track 17)
- Toccata (from Symphonie No. 5, op.42) -- Widor [1.85M] (CD4627, Track 2)
- Trumpet Tune -- Purcell/Clarke [400K] (CD1924, Track 5)
- Wedding March (from A Midsummer Night's Dream) -- Mendelssohn [750K] (CD3927, Disc 2, Track 4)
- CD0670 -- Awake the Trumpet's Lofty Sound. The Laubin Brothers, et. al. Hamburg: Deutsche Grammophon, 1986. #419245-2
- CD1361 -- The Sound of Music. Mary Martin, et. al. New York: Columbia Records/CBS Inc., 1973. #CK-32601
- CD1924 -- Organ Encores. Jean Guillou, Organ. Troy, NY: Dorian Recordings, 1988. #DOR-90112
- CD2565 -- Pachelbel Canon. Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Netherlands: Philips Digital Classics, 1987. #416-386-2
- CD3410 -- Noel! Noel! Noel! Michala Petri, Recorder, et. al. New York: RCA Victor/BMG Music, 1989. #60060-2-RC
- CD3927 -- A Midsummer Night's Dream (Complete). Scottish Chamber Orchestra, et. al. Monmouth, GB: Nimbus Records, 1987. #NI-5041 & NI-5042
- CD4425 -- Bach Soprano Arias with Flute. Julianne Baird, Soprano, & Emily Newbold, Flute. Providence: Newport Classic, 1994. #NPD-85530
- CD4627 -- Great Toccatas. Marie-Claire Alain, Organ. Erato Disques S.A., 1994. #4509-94812-2
- CD4932 -- Wedding Favourites. Stephen Cleobury, Organ. London: Decca Record Co., 1979. Weekend Classics #421 638-2
- CD4933 -- The Wedding Album. Anthony Newman, Organ. New York: Sony Music Entertainment, Inc., 1991. #MDK47273
- CD4934 -- The Wedding Album. New York: RCA/Ariola International, 1984. Red Seal #6207-2-RC
- CD5786 -- BRIDE'S Guide to Wedding Music. USA: Angel Records, 1993. #CDM 7 64899 2 6
- CD7351 -- Madrigals and Wedding Songs for Diana. London: Hyperion Records, 1988. CDA 66019 Hyperion
- CD7525 -- Orthodox Wedding Ceremony and New-Year Service. Sofia, Bulgaria : Gega New, 1993. #GD 142.
- CD7912 -- Music for Your Wedding: A Complete Guide. Buckinghamshire, England: Priory Records, 1998. PR WEDD.
- CD9766 -- Classical wedding v.2. Nashville, TN: Aardworks, 1998.
- CD9841 v.1 -- Banaa : Traditional wedding songs (Rajasthani). Manganiyars. Jaipur, India: Ninaad music, 1997.
- CD11109 -- A Day to Remember : Instrumental Music for your Wedding Day. The O'Neill Brothers. www.pianobrothers.com, 2002.
Categories of Music
These categorized lists are cross-linked to the Sound-Recording Excerpt list when a recorded excerpt is available for a particular song. Each entry also shows the Music Library's call numbers for selected scores and printed music which are available in the Music Library. If the Library does not own the music, you should be able to acquire it from your local music store or other sources. Music Library staff will be happy to assist you in locating a source for any music not available from the Library. Please note that these pieces all exist in many forms and arrangements, and your organist or musicians may have or suggest arrangements that differ from the ones included here.
Organ and Piano Works
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" from Cantata no. 147 (Call no.: M13.B32 H4 1927)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- Preludes and fugues for organ (M10.B3 1985)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Sleepers Wake"/ "Zion Hears the Watchman Singing" from Cantata no. 140
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "When Thou Art Near" ("Bist du bei mir") from Anna Magdalena Clavier Book (M14.4.W3 O9 1993)
- Boèllmann, Léon -- "Prière" from Suite Gothique
- Buxtehude, Dietrich -- Organ Works (M7.B98 A4)
- Elmore, Robert -- Three Meditative Moments Based on Moravian Hymns
- Francisque, Antoine -- Tresor d'Orphée, arr. for piano (M32.8.F7)
- Franck, César -- Organ Works (M7.F73 D6 1987)
- Handel, George Frideric -- "Largo" from Xerxes (M14.4.W3 O9 1993)
- Handel, Geroge Frideric -- "Pastoral Symphony" from Messiah (M2003.H33 M4 1992)
- Haydn, Franz Joseph -- Musical Clock Music
- Mendelssohn, Felix -- "Adagio" from Organ Sonata no. 2, op. 65 (M7.O72 1991)
- Micheelson, Hans Friedrich -- Das holsteinische Orgelbuchlein
- Pachelbel, Johann -- Canon, arr. for organ (M13 .P33 C3 1977)
- Pachelbel, Johann -- Organ Works (M7 .P33 S5 1993)
- Vaughan Williams, Ralph -- "Rhosymedre" from Three Preludes on Welsh Hymn Tunes (M559.V38 P7 1920)
- Widor, Charles Marie -- "Adagio" (4th Movement) from Organ Symphony no.5, op.42, no.1 (M11.W52 no.5)
Instrumental Solos and Ensembles
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Air" (on a G String) from Orchestral Suite in D Major, BWV 1068
- Bach Johann Sebastan/Gounod, Charles -- "Ave Maria" (Call no.: M453.W42 1992p book 1; arr. for string quartet)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- Brandenburg Concerto no. 4 (M1040.B22 1976)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Sheep may Safely Graze" from Cantata no. 208 (M453.W42 1992p book 1; arr. for string quartet)
- Berlioz, Hector -- "Trio des jeunes Ismaelites" from L'Enfance du Christ (for flutes and harp)
- Charpentier, Marc-Antoine -- "Prelude" from Te Deum, arr. for chamber ensemble (M2.P86 no. 13)
- Franck, César -- "Panis Angelicus" (M453.W42 1992p book 1; arr. for string quartet)
- Handel, George Frideric -- "Air" from Water Music (M1001.H135 W45 1974)
- Massenet, Jules -- "Meditation" from Thais (M223 .M39 M4 1950; arr. for violin and piano)
- Pachelbel, Johann -- Canon (M412.P22 D maj. 1994; arr. for 3 violins and piano)
- Peeters, Flor -- "Aria" from Trumpet Sonata, op.51 (M261.P44 op.51 1961)
- Vaughan Williams, Ralph -- "Rhosymedre" from Three Preludes on Welsh Hymn Tunes (M559.V3 P7 1994; arr. for brass quintet)
Vocal Solos and Ensembles
- Artman, R. -- "Wedding Prayer"
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" from Cantata no. 147 (M1977.W4 S563 1995 and M1977.W4 S562 1995; arr. for voice and piano)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Jesus Shepherd, Be Thou Near Me"
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "The Lord Bless You"
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Sheep May Safely Graze" from Cantata no. 208 (M1530.B14 W38)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "When Thou Art Near" ("Bist du bei mir") from Anna Magdalena Clavier Book (M1977.W4 S563 1995 and M1977.W4 S562 1995; arr. for voice and piano)
- Bach, Johann Sebastan/Gounod, Charles -- "Ave Maria" (M1977.W4 C58 1992)
- Cosway, Maria -- Italian Songs for Harp and Voice (M1619.L4293 1987)
- Diemer, Emma Lou -- Four Chinese Love Songs
- Dvorák, Antoní -- Biblical Songs, especially "God Is My Shepherd" and "I Will Sing New Songs of Gladness"� (M2113.D86 B53 1962)
- Franck, César -- "Panis Angelicus" (M2060 .E84 1996; arr. for chorus and piano or organ)
- Handel, George Frideric -- "Where'er you walk" from Semele (M2003.H33 S4 1976)
- "Kisses Sweeter than Wine" (M1630.18 .G735 2001)
- Malotte, Albert -- "The Lord's Prayer" (M2110 .T93 1993)
- Mendelssohn, Felix -- "If with All Your Hearts"
- Page, S. E. -- "The Love of God Flows Deep and Strong"
- Peeters, Flor. -- "Wedding Song: Whither Thou Goest, There Will I go Also" (M2113 .P43 op.103c 1962; arr. for voice and organ or piano)
- Schubert, Franz -- "Ave Maria", arr. for chorus and piano or organ (M2060 .E84 1996
- Schubert, Franz -- "Ave Maria", arr. for voice and piano (M1977.W4 S563 1995 / M1977.W4 S562 1995 / M2114.L16 S38 1992)
- "Simple Gifts" (M1629 .A4 A4354 1996 and M128 .A43 2001)
- Vaughan Williams, Ralph -- "The Call" from Five Mystical Songs; for baritone, chorus ad lib., orchestra (M2023.V38 M92 1970z)
- Weatherill, E. -- "A Marriage Prayer
Organ and Piano Works
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Gravement" (Middle Section) from Fantasy in G Major, BWV 572 (M11.B29 F3 1993)
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Prelude in C Major, BWV 553" from Eight Little Preludes and Fugues (M10.B3 K5 1987)
- Boèllmann, Léon -- Suite Gothique
- Buxtehude, Dietrich -- Fugue in C Major, BuxWV 174 ("Jig Fugue")
- Campra, André -- "Rigaudon"
- Charpentier, Marc-Antoine -- "Processional"
- Clarke, Jeremiah -- "The Prince of Denmark's March" (attributed to Henry Purcell as "Trumpet Tune") (M 14.4 .W3 O9 1993)
- Clarke, Jeremiah -- "Trumpet Tune" (M260.C44 1975)
- Clarke, Jeremiah -- "Trumpet Voluntary" (M22.C56 M6 1988)
- Daquin, Louis Claude -- "Grand Jeu et Duo"
- Dunstable, John -- "Agincourt Hymn"
- Handel, George Frideric -- "Hornpipe" from Water Music (M14.4.W3 O9 1993)
- Handel, George Frideric -- "Sinfonia (Arrival of the Queen of Sheba)" from Solomon; arr. for piano and voice (M2003.H33 S57 1897)
- Haydn, Franz Joseph -- "Praise We Sing to Thee" ("St. Anthony's Chorale") (M 14.4 .W3 O9 1993)
- Langlais, Jean -- "Pasticcio" from Organ Book
- Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Felix -- "Con moto meastoso" from Organ sonata no. 3 (M8 .M45 op.65, 1980)
- Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Felix -- "Wedding March" from Midsummer Night's Dream (M14.4.W3 O9 1993 / M1513.M43 S6 1985)
- Mulet, Henri -- "Carillon sortie"
- Purcell, Henry -- "Trumpet Tune"
- Stanley, John -- "Trumpet Voluntary" (M 14.4 .W3 O9 1993)
- Vierne, Louis -- "Finale" from Organ Symphony no. 1
- Wagner, Richard -- "Bridal Chorus" from Lohengrin; transcribed by Lemare (M7.L45 1990 ser. 2 v. 3)
- Wesley, Samuel Sebastian -- "Choral Song"
- Widor, Charles Marie -- "Toccata" (Finale) from Organ Symphony no.5, op. 42, no.1 (M 11 .W52 no.5 / M8.W64 D6 1991 ser. 1)
- Willan, James H. -- "Finale Jubilante
Instrumental Solos and Ensembles
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- "Allegro" from Brandenburg Concerto No. 4 in G Major
- Bach, Johann Sebastian -- First movement from Brandenburg Concerto no. 1, F major (M1040.B22 1976)
- Clarke, Jeremiah -- "Trumpet Tune" (M404.C56 T7 1969; trumpet(s) and organ)
- Handel, George Frideric -- "Hornpipe" from Water Music (M453.W42 1992p; arr. for string quartet)
- Handel, George Frideric -- "La Rejouissance" ("Rejoicing") from Music for the Royal Fireworks
- Marcello, Benedetto -- "Psalm XIX" (M 504 .M35 E8 1900z; arr. for 2 cornets, trombone, baritone and organ)
- Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Felix -- "Wedding March" from Midsummer Night's Dream (M 453 .W42 1992p; arr. for string quartet)
- Mouret, Jean Joseph -- "Rondeau" from Fanfares avec une suitte de simphonies (Theme from Masterpiece Theatre) (M985 .M68 F3 no.1 1970; trumpet, timbale, violin, oboe)
- Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus -- "Allelujah" from Exsultate, Jubilate (M 453 .W42 1992p, v.1; arr. for string quartet)
- Purcell, Henry -- Trumpet Tunes and Voluntaries (M260.C44 1975; arr. for trumpet and organ)
- Purcell, Henry -- "Trumpet Tune" (M453.W42 1992p, v.1; arr. for string quartet)
- Vivaldi, Antonio -- "Air" from The Four Seasons: Spring; arr. for violin and keyboard instrument (M1113 .V58 C5 no.1 1985)
- Vivaldi, Antonio -- "Allegro" from The Four Seasons: Spring; arr. for violin and ensemble (M1112.V59 no. 1 .R5 1950)
- Wagner, Richard -- "Bridal Chorus" from Lohengrin (M 453 .W42 1992p, v.1; arr. for string quartet)
Vocal Solos and Ensembles
- Beethoven, Ludwig van -- "Finale" from Symphony no. 9 (M3.1 .B43 1996 no.9 finale; arr. for soloists, chorus, and piano)
- Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus -- "Allelujah," from Exsultate, jubilate (M 2104 .M69 E9 1970z; arr. for soprano and piano)
- Rodgers, Richard -- "Processional" from The Sound of Music (M1503.R684 S55 1960; arr. for voice and piano)
- "Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee"
- "Now Thank We All Our God"
- "Praise to the Lord the Almighty"
- "What Wondrous Love is This"
- Archer, Malcolm. The Oxford Book of Wedding Music for Manuals. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993. 52 pp.
This compilation brings together 27 of the most popular organ pieces for weddings in simplified arrangements for manuals alone.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M14.4.W3O9 1993
- Bock, Fred. Piano Favorites for Weddings. Hal Leonard, 2000
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M32.8 .P52 2000
- Christopher, John. For Manuals Only. New York: McAfee Music Corp., 1977, 112 pp.
Contains a collection of 47 organ pieces, some suitable for weddings, that do not require use of pedals on the organ.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M7.F67 1977
- A Decade of Love Songs and Wedding Hits: 1990-2000. Miami: Warner Bros., 2000.392 pp.
This book contains sheet music for 80 popular love songs released between 1990-2000.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call number M1977 .W4 D4 2000
- Goodfellow, William D. Wedding Music: an Index to Collections. Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1992. 197 pp.
This book is an index to collections of wedding music, both instrumental and vocal. It includes 191 books and over 3,400 compositions.
LOCATION: Music Library Reference, Call Number ML128.W4G6 1992
- Okun, Milton. Pop Songs for the Wedding. Port Chester, NY: Cherry Lane Music Company, 1994. 159 pp.
An anthology of popular music and love songs suitable for contemporary weddings, plus a music planning guide and ceremony register.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M1977.W4P67 1994
- Ryden, William. The Wedding Album. Boca Raton, FL: Masters Music Publications, 1992. 3 vols.
Contains excerpts from works of the Baroque, Classical and Romantic Eras arranged for string quartet.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M453.W42 1992p
- Singer's Christian Wedding Collection. Milwaukee: Hal Leonard, 1999.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M1977 .W4 S56 1999
- Trevor, Caleb H. Organ Book. London: Oxford University Press, 1973. Vol. 4
Includes 23 organ pieces, some of which are suitable for weddings.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M7.T7265O68 v.4
- Trevor, Caleb H. Organ Music for Manuals. London: Oxford University Press, 1972, 4 vols.
Contains a variety of organ music, some suitable for weddings, that does not require the use of organ pedals.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M7.T7265O7
- Wedding Music, for Church Weddings, Anniversaries, and Other Festive Occasions. St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 1952. 2 vols.
The chief purpose of this collection is to supply suitable music for use at church weddings. It includes over 70 processionals, recessionals, preludes, voluntaries, and postludes.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number M6.W4
- African Wedding Guide
Includes information about different African traditions with suggestions for adaptation.
- Als, Hilton. Wedding News: Celebrate! (Views of Y. D. McClendon) Essence, Vol. 16, p.42+, Feb. 1986.
Bridal consultant Yvonne D. McClendon provides organizational tips for a successful wedding. Discusses the use of a disk jockey or prerecorded tape instead of live musicians.
LOCATION: Clemons Microfiche Collection
- Braun, H. Myron. Members of the Wedding American Organist, August 1983, p.38.
Suggests choral pieces suitable for a church wedding.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number: ML1.M29
- Carlson, J. Bert. A Pastoral View of Music for a Christian Wedding Journal of Church Music, June 1977, no.19, pp.2-5.
Discusses theological implications involved in selecting wedding music and how theological considerations have changed in recent times.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number: ML1.J59
- Harper, Carrie. Perfect by Design Washingtonian, Vol. 28, pp.171+, January 1993.
Provides advice on finding a good wedding consultant; includes recommended wedding music agents.
LOCATION: Darden School Library
- McManus, Kevin. With These Bills, I Thee Wed Changing Times, Vol. 42, pp.86-92 May 1988.
Tips on cutting wedding costs, including those for music.
LOCATION: Alderman Library, Call Number: HC101.C47 -or- Proquest
- Pollan, Stephen M. and Mark Levine. 'I Do'-ing It Right New York, Vol. 22, pp.38-50, Jan.9, 1989.
A guide to saving time and money when planning a wedding, including information on music.
LOCATION: Alderman Library, Call Number: F128.1.N4 -or- Micfilm S-733
- Ultimatewedding.com contains a wedding song library which has suggestions for appropriate music for each part of the ceremony and reception.
- Wedding Guide U.K.
A commercial site which includes, in addition to online products and services, advice on choosing wedding music with sound clips as well as tips on wedding etiquette and legal issues.
- Zimmerman, Wallace. Wedding Music in the Reform Synagogue American Organist, p.19, August 1981.
Discusses considerations in choosing music for a synagogue wedding in the Reform tradition.
LOCATION: Music Library, Call Number: Ml1.M29