Thursday, April 28, 2011

Music and the Royal Wedding

william and catherine
william and catherine at st andrews
As with the design of the wedding dress, just what music will be played at the wedding of Miss Catherine Middleton and HRH Prince William of Wales is being kept on the quiet until the day itself. The London Chamber Orchestra, two choirs, and two fanfare teams will be involved, and an original fanfare will be played after the ceremony as the couple signs the wedding register. Other than that, word is that there will be newly commissioned pieces as well as familiar hymns, all chosen by William and Catherine themselves.

What do you think? Elgar, Purcell, John Rutter, something else entirely? Princess Diana’s choice for her wedding hymn, I Vow to Thee My Country? Music that references the couple’s time together in Scotland? Traditional Anglican hymns are likely to be included, and, since the 1860s. that has encompassed a wide range of music.

In any case, if you like what you hear. music as recorded during the service will be available both digitally and on disc beginning just a few days after the service,. It is the first time music from a royal wedding is being offered digitally, and the CD is said to come with a souvenir booklet.

two songs that may not be on William and Catherine’s playlist (but then again...)
but go well with the wedding spirit

White Dress by Cathie Ryan

Wedding Dress by T with the Maggies

update: here is a list of the music which was played at the royal wedding service. It did, in fact, include Elgar and a newly commissioned piece by John Rutter, which was a wedding gift to the couple from Westminster Abbey. more thoughts on this music to come. meanwhile, you may order the official recording of the music The Royal Wedding: The Official Album

you may also wish to see

Music Road: from Donegal: T with the Maggies
Music Road: Cathie Ryan: Songwriter
Official Royal Wedding site

photographs of William and Catherine courtesy of Clarence House

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posted by Kerry Dexter at


Anonymous Casey@Good. Food. Stories. said...

Though I was sleepily watching the wedding unfold live - so my thoughts were a little hazy - I thought the music was perfectly chosen for the day. (and all those church bells! swoon!)

9:25 PM  
Blogger kerry dexter said...

yes, I thought the bells really helped celebrate the day. no word yet whether any of the bell ringing will be included on the recordings, but it'd be an interesting touch.

7:59 AM  
Anonymous NoPotCooking said...

Here's something interesting I noticed, which I was just about to Google. They had a hymm called Jerusalem which is apparently very popular in England. It ends with a reference to England's greenest hills (or something like that). The song that Elton John played at Diana's funeral (a version of Candle in the Wind) has a line that says the same thing, something about England's greenest hills. I wondered if the Elton song was a reference to the hymm and if perhaps playing the hymn was somehow a reference to Dianan

11:14 AM  
Blogger kerry dexter said...

I'd think that is a connection between Elton John's tribute and Jerusalem, which is indeed very well known. There were a number of connections to Diana in the wedding music. Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer, which was the first hymn sung, was the last hymn at Diana's funeral, for example, and I believe the Elgar and Ralph Vaughan Williams pieces were played at her and Charles's wedding. William and Catherine chose all the music themselves, so they no doubt gave consideration to all these connections.

4:12 PM  
Blogger BIKE LADY said...

I was in the Grand Canyon for two weeks and completely missed the royal affair so appreciate this notification. Thank you. ;-)

5:03 PM  

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