Wedding Recessional Music

Go Out in Style

Can’t you just picture it: “I now pronounce you ‘Husband and Wife.’ You may kiss the bride!” And the whole place erupts in cheers. For many people, this is the most exciting and memorable moment of the wedding. It is at this moment that your wedding recessional music will begin.

Creme and gold ribbon wedding cake.

Don’t let down your guests with boring wedding recessional music. The selection for this song should be celebratory and provide a sense of joy. Those who were wiping tears from their eyes should now be grinning from ear to ear. Choose happy recessional music like the songs listed below.

The most popular choice is Felix Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March,” written originally for Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. This sounds fabulous played on the organ, which gives it all the oomph and drama the song deserves. Other traditional choices may include Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy,” which is very upbeat and happy, and the “Hallelujah Chorus” or “Arrival of the Queen of Sheba,” both by Handel.

bride and groom at wedding.

If you want to use something different, but still a traditional-sounding instrumental piece, talk to your musicians. The performers may know of another appropriate option that is not overly-used in this role. “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee” would make an excellent choice.

Or, if you want to totally buck tradition and use a fun, contemporary song, feel free. Unless your house of worship has strict standards on what type of music can be played, there are no longer and hard and fast rules on the topic. Besides, most wedding guests are tired of the same old same old.

Some ideas for new wedding recessional music are “Oh, Happy Day” and U2’s “Beautiful Day.” If you have soulful roots, or just love Motown music, consider something by Stevie Wonder. His songs are fun and well known, so everyone will be singing along. “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” is a great example.

Blue aqua wedding cake.

If you have special heritage, now is a time to incorporate those unique rituals into your ceremony. For example, if you or your fiancée are Scottish, have a bagpiper lead you back down the aisle. If you are daring enough, throw is some techno music, such as “Sandstorm” by Darude. Make it your own!

Whether you go with traditional, classical, wedding recessional music: "The Wedding March", "Pachelbel's Canon", or Beethoven's "Ode To Joy" or with something different, the most important aspect of the wedding is what comes after the wedding - the marriage.

Bride laying on bed.
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