For the traditional bride, “Here Comes the Bride” and the “Wedding March” are the quintessential songs that frame her passage from engaged to married status. Part of millions of marriage ceremonies since the Victorian era, these timeless musical arrangements represent a magical moment for the bride and groom as well as the guests.
Despite the popularity of the songs, many religious faiths and cultural groups have banned the songs, either for moral or secular reasons. The poignant notes were crafted in the Romantic era by two very different German composers, one of whom held strong beliefs that aligned with the Nazis. Religious leaders also take exception with the pagan elements of the songs, both of which were written for popular theater pieces.
While many modern couples choose to play secular music that represents their personalities or relationship during the processional and recessional, weddings that are held in a church are accompanied by traditional hymns, such as “Ava Maria.” Popular Christian wedding songs include “Days Like These” by Natalie Grant and “I Promise (Wedding Song)” by CeCe Winans.
While the processional and recessional each typically last through two songs, the number you will need depends on the size of your wedding party and the length of the aisle. The flower girl and ring bearer can stroll down to one song, the wedding party to another and the bride traditionally has her own song.