I recommend a balance of both old and new songs / music during the ceremony. One Irish hymn can greatly enrich the mass. Many songs can be performed as instrumentals on either harp or piano. The flute is also available. Have a mixture of songs and instrumentals to add variance to your ceremony. It is important that the music and songs your both choose, reflect your personalities, and is meaningful and appropriate. It is just as important to have beautiful lyrics as it is to have beautiful melodies. It is also important in my opinion to personalise your music. It is also advisable to check your chosen songs and music choices with the priest or registrar before you print you mass booklets or ceremony scrolls. Some couples like to include the name of their songs and music in the booklet / scrolls.
WHERE TO PUT MUSIC DURING CATHOLIC CEREMONY
Entrance: One instrumental or song / or two instrumentals – one for bridesmaids and a separate piece for bride (This is optional and very often one piece is sufficient) (I would suggest something slow and graceful here)
Individual Candles: Short instrumental ( less than one minute ) - a memorial candle for a deceased member of the family is often lit at this stage also. The individual and memorial candle can be lit at the same time by the couple.
Psalm: 1 psalm (This is sung after the first reading)
Gospel Acc: Alleluia is generally sung before the priest reads the Gospel.
Unity Candle: One song or one instrumental ( Should be kept short in duration)
Offertory: One song or one instrumental
Offering of peace: One song or instrumental
Holy Holy and Acc. of faith (parts of the mass) are generally sung as standard
Communion: Two songs or two instrumentals or a song and an instrumental
Reflection: Instrumental or song (sometimes the reflection is read by a friend or family member while gentle music is played in the background)
Signing of Register: Two songs or instrumentals ( photographs are generally taken at this stage)
Recessional: One song of instrumental (Preferably upbeat)
Where to Put Music during Spiritualist / Civil or Humanist Ceremony
Please note - no religious songs or music during a Civil (HSE) Ceremony.
Religious music/ songs can be integrated into a Spiritualist / Humanist Ceremony
After first reading: One song or instrumental
Unity Candle: One Song or instrumental
(Sand Ceremony / Hand Binding / First Gift Exchange can also be performed at this stage of ceremony)
Signing of register: One song or instrumental
Recessional: One song or instrumental
All songs and music must be shown to the priest or registrar prior to the ceremony.
It is advisable to have music and song list checked before you print mass or ceremony booklets.
All music is performed live on the day of the ceremony
Instruments available: Harp, Piano, Flute, Low Whistle and guitar.
Live music is performed as guests are arriving for ceremony