Meet the Quartet
FAQ's about Weddings
How long should the quartet play?
Music generally begins as people start to arriveapproximately
20-30 minutes before the ceremony. You may also want the quartet to
play after the ceremony. Depending on how you decide to dismiss people
from their seats and how many guests you have, this could take anywhere
from 10-30 minutes. Our standard wedding includes 30 minutes of prelude
music, a 30-45 minute ceremony, then 15 minutes of postlude music. We
also provide music for cocktail hours and receptions.
How can I incorporate the quartet into my wedding ceremony?
There are several traditional moments in weddings which can include
1.) Prelude (as people enter and are seated)
2.) Seating of the mothers
3.) Bridesmaids Procession
4.) Bridal Procession
5.) Unity Candle Lighting
7.) Special Music or Prayer
8.) Bride and Groom Recession
9.) Postlude (as people leave).
You may also have your own
unique moments in the wedding for which you would like the quartet to
play. You may have music during all or just some of these different
parts of the ceremony. You can either allow the quartet to choose the
music, or make the musical selections yourself.
My favorite piece is Mozart's Jupiter Symphony. Can the quartet
play this for my bridal procession?
We certainly will make every attempt to honor our clients' special
requests. If the piece is not in our library, we can try to track down
a string quartet arrangement . It may be necessary for us to arrange
your favorite tune for string quartet if an arrangement does not already
exist. (Please check our rate information.)
However, because we are limited to the instrumentation of a string quartet,
some pieces just cannot be arranged for us. Also, some very beautiful
pieces unfortunately don't work well as processions. The piece
may have particularly long cadences that do not allow us to come to
a stop in the music without sounding abrupt and "cut off".
We will let you know if your request won't work.
Can the quartet attend my dress rehearsal?
We have found that it is generally unnecessary for us to attend
the dress rehearsal. As long as things are well communicated prior to
the ceremony, and you inform us of any changes that occurred at the
rehearsal, the wedding music should go smoothly. However, if you strongly
feel you want the quartet to attend the dress rehearsal, we will try
to do so if our calendars are not already booked. Another option is
to have just one member of our quartet to attend the rehearsal.
A separate fee will be charged for rehearsal attendance.
I have my sister, who is a flutist, performing at my wedding.
Can the quartet accompany her?
We often collaborate with musicians or vocalists on commonly
performed wedding music and enjoy doing so! However, much depends on
the music selected. The piece must be something that has been arranged
for quartet, or can easily be arranged for four instruments. Even if
the piece is already in our library, it may be necessary for us to make
a new arrangement if the instrumentalist or vocalist requires us to
play the piece in a different "key". Also, an added rehearsal
will be necessary. For commonly performed, simpler pieces, the rehearsal
can usually be done immediately before the wedding for a small fee.
If you are choosing multiple pieces for us to perform together, if the
pieces are very difficult or are unfamiliar to us, or if we will be
performing with an amateur who needs more practice time with us, we
may require an extra rehearsal for which we must charge a fee.
The quartet at my cousin's
wedding fell apart right in the middle of her bridal processional.
We still don't know what happened, because the rest of the time
they were fantastic. How can we be sure something like
this won't happen at our wedding?
The string quartet's unique and beautiful sound can help make
your grand entrance elegant and memorable. However, there is a slight
element of "danger" in having 4 people try to coordinate music
with something as unpredictable as a bridal procession. The advantage
of the lone organist is that (s)he can improvise on a whim if the bride
walks down the aisle a little faster or slower than expected, or stops
to hug her great aunt halfway down the aisle. This is not as easy with
four musicians. Couple that with the added problem of not being able
to SEE the bride through an entire STANDING congregation, and you could
have a recipe for disaster! However, there are several things you can
do to help avoid any problems:
Choose music that allows
the musicians to come to an easy stopping point.
Once you start, don't stop! Part of our timing is based on where
we are in the music when you're halfway down the aisle. If you stop
to chat (as some brides have done at past weddings we've played
for!), you may find yourself finishing your walk in silence.
Walk at a normal speed.
Nervous as you may be, resist the temptation to sprint (or drag
your feet!). If possible, try to place the musicians where they
can see you at all times. Choir lofts and balconies usually work
If you plan to do anything
unusual, let us know!
One bride we played for reached the end of the aisle, then continued
up the alter, walked a circle around the alter, and then walked
back down to join her groom. Needless to say, we weren't expecting
this, and she ended her walk in silence.
Make sure everyone else
knows their cues.
If the bridesmaids begin walking down the aisle while we're in the
midst of playing Jesu Joy of Man's Desire, and we were supposed
to be playing Canon in D for the bridesmaids, it's going to make
for a confusing, chaotic procession.
Make sure we are well
informed concerning every aspect of the procession.
This includes informing us of everyone who will be walking down
the aisle during
the procession (justice of the peace, ministers, priests, bridesmaids,
flower girls, ring bearers, parents, grandparents, readers, ushers,
groomsmen, groom, bride,
etc.), making sure we know if and when an aisle runner will be pulled,
who will be lighting candles, etc.