What size of string ensemble do I need for my wedding?
How to pick musicians for my ceremony?
You may think that the answer to these questions is your budget. But that’s not quite right.
In this article, we will tell you what to consider when choosing your wedding musicians and the difference between a solo violin, string duo, trio, and a string quartet.
The classic composition of this ensemble consists of two violins, viola, and cello. This combination provides the richest sound to play the melody, rhythm, harmony and beat. It is the perfect set of instruments for almost every venue and event. The choice of music for this combination is enormous. From Bach to Metallica to Katy Perry. String Quartet is a perfect fit for weddings from 100 people and up.
This ensemble consists of a violin, a viola, and a cello or two violins and a cello. The melody is accompanied in direct harmony by another part along with the cello providing a bottom or bass line. This ensemble also has a pretty big repertoire. String Trio has its own charm. It is slightly more intimate and is more suited to particular events and smaller venues. We’d recommend this wedding ensemble when the number of guests is 70 up to 100.
Having one less instrument also means there is one less harmony in the music. But if you’re not worried about how it would sound harmonically, then you can consider a String Duo. It could be two violins or a violin and a cello. We prefer the violin and cello option. That gives you high and low instruments. Duo has a more sophisticated sound because it has both the melody and harmony together. String duo doesn’t have the extensive musical library of Broadway, pop, and Latin pieces that are available for trios and quartets. If you have a specific song in mind, we would need to make sure that the music for this song exists in duo form.
We recommend a String Duo for 40 up to 70 event guests.
A violin by itself is is a very intimate instrument. If you are having your event in a charming, tiny chapel in front of your 20 friends and family, a solo violin is a perfect choice!
But keep in mind that the acoustic solo violin provides the melody only. What do we mean by this? Some pop, R&B, and rock songs do not translate very well on solo violin. If you think about modern songs, they often are based around a lead singer with supporting instruments such a guitar, piano, bass, and drums. When you have a solo violinist, the melody they need to play should be strong and recognizable.
If you decided to go with a solo violin, the best music to choose should be from a classical, time-proven repertoire. There is a reason why pieces like Jesu Joy, Handel’s Water Music, or Air by Bach have been performed at weddings for so many years. They sound rich and bold almost on any instrument.
Unfortunately, that is not always the case with the modern songs that consist mostly of repetitive notes only. So for this type of song, you will need to book at least one more musician, such as a cellist or pianist or guitarist to make it work.
Sometimes we have clients who send us a link to a YouTube video with a cool modern song being played by one violinist. Now we don’t want to be a dream breaker, but in 99% of these cases, it’s not just a solo violin you’re hearing. There’s a recorded backing track in which many instruments are providing both rhythm, harmony, and accompaniment. Only then, on top of all that, is the violinist playing the melody. This is why it sounds so good.
But, if you are disappointed by that bit of insider news, we’ve got you covered! If you’d like a pop repertoire and want to have only one violinist for your event, we have something special for you!
The Electric Violin
Whether you would like the Electric Violinist to play the Wedding March for the entrance of the Bride, play mood-setting music during a cocktail hour, go table to table serenading your guests at dinner, or some upbeat selections for the reception – Electric Violinist can do it all!
These sets are performed on the unique NS electric violin with high-quality backing tracks and we are proud to say that Adagio Weddings is the only wedding company in the Jacksonville / St. Augustine area that offers this unique kind of performance. And did we mention it very affordable?
What to consider when choosing your ensemble?
Several factors should be considered: the venue, the number of guests you have invited, the style of the music you want, and the general ambiance you would like to create.
We have already mentioned music choice, let`s talk about the venue and the number of guests.
If you having your wedding in a charming, tiny chapel in front of your 20 friends and family members, you may not be able to squeeze in a classical string quartet or a harpist.
Likewise, if your wedding ceremony is on a windy beach with all kinds of distractions and there are more then 50 people there, you may want to re-think having a solo violin.
While your guests will be talking and enjoying themselves before the ceremony, they might not be able to hear the music. Imagine your recessional or exit song! Will you be able to hear your violinist playing your song when all your guests will be clapping, cheering, and whistling?
If your event is in a large room or outside, and you inviting over one hundred guests, it is a good idea to use a quartet or trio. For smaller events in a smaller space (up to sixty or seventy guests), a duo or trio will work well.
For an especially grand ceremony, you may want to consider hiring a string quartet or a bigger chamber ensemble.
We can provide up to 16 people ensemble!
We were hoping this article helped you understand the diversity of wedding ensembles. If you have any questions or would like to reserve any of these ensembles, fill out our contact us form below.