after the cake has been enjoyed and the flowers are gone,one of the most
talked about and cherished memories will be the sound of the great highland
The bagpipes will provide an extraordinary and enduring aspect to your
wedding day. And considering the cost of the average wedding, hiring a
piper is one of the least expensive, yet most memorable, touches to your
Your guests will always remember the beauty, joy and tradition of hearing
Every wedding day is unique and special, but here are just a few ideas
on how to best incorporate the beautiful sound of the bagpipes.
· Play for guests arriving at the wedding site
· Play for all processionals, including the bride
· Play for the recessional
· Play for guests as they are leaving
· Lead the bride and groom into the reception site
Should you decide to reserve Roy’s services, you can meet with him
for a consultation, hear him play and make the final decisions for including
the bagpipes on
your special day.
No doubt....the bagpipes will help make your wedding a glorious and unforgettable
visit the Testimonials section to see what
previous clients have to say.
for your Wedding...
can make a pleasant addition to your special day. Pipers have been entertaining
and providing traditional Celtic music at weddings, banquets and parties
for centuries. Your quests will be quite surprised when they hear bagpipes
appear at your wedding and fill the air with a Celtic tradition that has
touched so many in the past. You don’t even have to be Irish or
Scottish to have the pipes played at your wedding.
Bagpipes a Bit Loud?
They certainly are, however, this is their appeal and grandeur. A properly
tuned and played set of bagpipes has no musical equal. Churches usually
have high ceilings with plenty of open space and people acoustically dampen
much of the volume. If the church has an organ, you can be certain bagpipes
won't be overpowering. The effect can be breathtaking. At out-of-the-way
locations with no other practical access to live music, the grandiose
sound of bagpipes bridges that gap beautifully.
to Have the Pipes ?
It’s a personal choice, but here are a few suggestions I can offer
about having a piper at the ceremony, the reception and in between.
One suggestion that I will make will be to have the piper play for around
15 minutes before the start of the ceremony. There are two very good reasons
for this. Number 1 is the arrival of the guests. Number 2 - most weddings
rarely get started on time. Since the arrival of guests are usually staggered
an hour before the wedding, it makes sense to play when the majority of
guests have arrived during this time. Keep in mind most guests will walk
right past the piper on their way to their seat, this is especially true
if the weather is very agreeable. If your guests are arriving at the same
time (all arriving on buses, from a boat, etc.) then a piper can be used
quite effectively before the start of the ceremony.
During the Ceremony
The key is to this is to limit the amount of playing. Most weddings are
indoors and the pipes are a very loud in confined spaces or where the
acoustics will amplify the volume of the pipes. Also ensure that you have
permission to have a piper playing inside a church. Some churches may
not allow other musicians playing inside.
Decide if you wish to have the piper march the bride down aisle or stand
in the rear of the church. The piper can play for the entire wedding party
as they walk down the aisle but make sure the piper has a special tune
for just the bride
During the Service
If you wish to have a memorial for a loved one not present at the wedding
then remember to keep it limited to one tune. Amazing Grace or something
similar is nice during the ceremony.
Instruct the piper to either walk up the aisle to meet you at the alter
or stand in the rear of the church and start playing. When you arrive
at the rear of the church, the piper can then slowly exit the church and
continue playing outside for your guests.
Have the piper start playing outside the church when the guests are exiting.
The piper should play for approximately 10 - 20 minutes while waiting
for the receiving line to complete. The piper can briefly stop playing
so the photographer can photograph the bridal party. When the photos are
completed and the rice is thrown, the piper can now begin to play a fast
and lively tune while the couple enters the limo. A piper is also a good
photo op for your guests, and can keep them occupied while the wedding
party is finishing up last minute photo ops of their own.
Welcoming the guests at the reception
Some venues are ideal for having a piper present to welcome guests. Outdoor
venues like gardens, lakeside or beachfront resorts, castles, open air
restaurants with mountain views are definitely enhanced by the sound of
the Great Highland Bagpipes.
During the Reception
The best time to have a piper play at the reception is at the entrance
of the couple or bridal entourage at the reception venue. The accompanying
sound of the great highland bagpipes makes for a really grand and unforgettable
entrance. An upbeat march like “Scotland the Brave” is ideal
LAST NOTE ...
Though there are hundreds of bagpipe tunes available, you will
be limited to what tunes the piper already knows how to play. Pipers generally
have a varied selection of popular and traditional tunes that they can
offer to play. It doesn't hurt to ask if a piper can play or can learn
to play a tune. A simple request may be all that’s needed for a
piper to include a new tune into the repertoire that he has been meaning
Traditional bagpipe marches work well for both the processional and recessionals.
Some great tunes to ask for are “Scotland the Brave”, “Highland
Cathedral”, and “Flower of Scotland”. Pipers can play
the tune over the phone for you with a practice chanter.
Rates are very reasonable, a piper costs a lot less than a string quartet,
and a little more than a pianist , but is used in a totally different
context. A piano and string quartet is background music, bagpipes are
not. Factors that will affect the price will involve travel time, amount
of playing, and how soon in advance you book. One way travel times under
an hour may be reasonable, but anything more than that expect to pay a
little bit more. Parking fees, tolls, should also be included. Be realistic
on the amount of bagpiping you wish to hear. Bagpiping can be very strenuous
over long time periods both for the listener and the piper. Don’t
expect a piper to play for hours and hours (not that your guests would
want to hear them). At a typical wedding, expect about 15 minutes of piping
before the ceremony with 10-20 minutes after the ceremony at the receiving
line. Play time at the reception will vary on when you have the piper
play (see above) If you wish to have a piper at both the wedding and reception,
treat each location as a separate event. Of course some weddings the ceremony
and reception are held at the same location so you can tailor the piping
to your situation.
the church to
the sound of the pipes
(photo by: Lester Esposo)
the march of a
(photo by: Anton Sheker)
the church to
the sound of the pipes
(photo by: Gabby Gabaya)
off a Bride's processional
Legaspi City, Bicol
Wedding Expo 2006