North West Ireland's Premier Wedding Quartet - Sligo, Donegal, Leitrim and beyond


Wedding Music

Pachelbel’s Canon is probably the most requested music we play at weddings as a string quartet. It is almost always played for the entrance of the bride, signalling the start of the wedding ceremony. As a piece of music it is very clever as well as beautiful and inspiring, using several special techniques which add to its mysterious appeal.

As well as being a canon, the entire piece is laid out over what is known as a ground bass, that is to say a repeating pattern in the cello part. The cello simply repeats an eight-note figure in even crotchets, which gives the music its hypnotic character. Then the canon begins. A canon is a tune which is devised in such a way that it can be played by two people, but with one starting a few moments after the other, and fit in with itself so that the result is harmonious. Pachelbel not only has two players in this canon, but three! All three players have the exact same music, but play two bars after each other. The result of this three-player canon over a ground bass is a beautiful, mysterious piece in which the melodic lines weave into one another so effortlessly that the music seems almost magical.

Here is an excellent version of Pachelbel’s Canon played by Budapest Strings:

This music is ideal for the bride’s entrance, but can be used elsewhere in a wedding ceremony if you have another music choice for that part of the service. Keep an eye out for more blog entries in the church music section as we focus on different parts of the wedding music repertoire.