The Parish Churches of St. Mary and St. James, West Derby
MUSIC AT WEDDINGS
ORGAN MUSIC
Before the service the organist will usually play some appropriate music of his own choice. If you would like a particular piece to be played, you will need to consult with him a few weeks before your wedding.
THE PROCESSIONAL
This piece announces the arrival of the bride and accompanies her entrance into the church, it is the most dramatic piece of music at a wedding. The most popular piece of music at this point is The Bridal March from Lohengrin by Wagner (commonly known as “Here comes the Bride” ! )
Other appropriate pieces of music for the processional include:-
The Prince of Denmark’s March - Jeremiah Clarke
Trumpet Tune - Henry Purcell
Te Deum Prelude - Marc-Antoine Charpentier
Hornpipe from “The Water Music” - George Frederic Handel
Rondeau from “Abdelazer”  - Henry Purcell
The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba - George Frederic Handel
Bridal March - Hubert Parry
Grand March from “Aida” - Giuseppe Verdi
Organ Sonata No.3 - Felix Mendelssohn
HYMNS
Two hymns are normally chosen. They should be selected from the hymn book(s) currently in use at St. Mary’s. Even if you intend to produce an Order of Service, you should still refer to the current hymn books and make sure your printer has the correct words to ensure that there is no confusion or disagreement on wording.
A list of appropriate hymns is included below. They are taken from New English Hymnal.
237 Morning has broken; 387Jesus, good above all other
239 Lord of all hopefulness; 393Lead us, Heavenly Father
319 O God whose loving hand; 394Let all the world
320 O perfect love; 408Love divine
333 All my hope on God is founded; 413Now thank we all our God

357 Father, hear the prayer we offer; 427O praise ye the Lord
367 Gracious Spirit, Holy Ghost; 436Praise, my soul, the King of Heaven
369 Happy are they . . .; 457The King of love my shepherd is
375 Lord of the Dance; 459The Lord’s my shepherd
488 And did those feet in ancient time ( Jerusalem )
You may also consult Complete Anglican Hymns Old and New. Refer to the section on music for weddings.
DURING THE SIGNING OF THE REGISTER. When the bridal party withdraws to sign the registers, the organist will play some appropriate music. If the choir is present, a suitable anthem may be sung - usually the choice of the Director of Music, but if you have a particular request please discuss the matter in good time.
THE RECESSIONAL
This piece will reflect the jubilant spirit of the occasion. The most popular choice here is the Wedding March from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” by Mendelssohn and it is, indeed, a very effective piece.
You may, however, wish to consider other suitable works, among which are:
Toccata from 5th Organ Symphony - Charles-Marie Widor

Marche Triomphale - Siegfried Karg-Elert
Fanfare - Percy Whitlock
Crown Imperial - William Walton
Festival Toccata - Percy Fletcher
GENERAL NOTES
The Director of Music will normally be present at the Wedding Preparation Meeting that you attend. He will be happy to talk to you about your requirements. He may also be available, by prior arrangement, to speak to you after the Parish Eucharist on Sunday morning or after choir practice on Monday evening at about 8:00 p.m. It is also possible to hear a number of musical items - including hymns-  on the internet  - just Google the title.
The musicians at St. Mary’s are well used to arranging music for services and are able to give sound advice on the suitability of music for your wedding. This is based on their practical experience of worship in St. Mary’s - a traditional Anglican church building, with a large, three manual pipe organ and an all-male choir. Given this context, music tends to be restricted to the more traditional styles, which is consistent with the ambience of the building and therefore all the more effective, thus adding to the splendour of your wedding.
Please note that while every effort is made to ensure that choristers are present as required, this cannot always be guaranteed because of commitments elsewhere. This is particularly so during school holiday periods - above all during August.
CLERGY
The Parish staff  not only look after St. Mary’s but also St. James’s, so that there are times when they are very busy. We try to ensure that the priest who meets you at the preparation meeting is the one who will officiate at your wedding. We cannot, however, guarantee this, and we regret that it is not possible to ask for a particular staff member to officiate at your wedding. We thank you for your understanding on this matter. If you have any further enquiries please contact us by email at:   stmarysweddings@googlemail.com