60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (2022)

Table of Contents
Which Classical Music is right for my Wedding Ceremony? Prelude music March of the Priests - Mozart Moonlight Sonata - Ludwig van Beethoven Air on the G String - Johann Sebastian Bach Alla Hornpipe - George Frideric Handel Toccata - Charles-Marie Widor Spring (the Four Seasons) - Antonio Vivaldi Méditation - Jules Massenet The Swan - Camille Saint-Saens Träumerei - Robert Schumann Morning Mood - Edvard Grieg Classical Processional music Bridal Chorus - Richard Wagner Canon in D - Johann Pachelbel Jesu, Joy Of Man's Desiring - Johann Sebastian Bach The Prince of Denmark's March - Jeremiah Clarke Ode to Joy - Ludwig van Beethoven Ave Verum Corpus - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Flower Duet - Léo Delibes The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba - George Frideric Handel Edward Elgar - Salut d'Amour Ave Maria - Franz Schubert Signing the Register Cello Suite No.1 In G Major - Johan Sebastian Bach To A Wild Rose - Edward McDowell Gabriel's Oboe - Ennio Morricone Largo from Symphony No.9 - Antonín Leopold Dvořák Panis Angelicus - César Franck Für Elise - Ludwig van Beethoven O Mio Babbino Caro - Giacomo Puccini Clair de Lune - Claude Debussy Aria da capo - Glenn Gould A Thousand Years - Vitamin String Quartet Precessional music Wedding March - Felix Mendelssohn Eine Kleine Nachtmusik - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Bourrée in E minor - Johann Sebastian Bach Crown Imperial: A Coronation March - Sir William Walton Symphony No. 3 - Camille Saints-Saens Jupiter - Gustav Holst Music for the Royal Fireworks - George Frideric Handel Largo al factotum - Gioachino Rossini Winter (the Four Seasons) - Antonio Vivaldi Concerning Hobbits - Vitamin String Quartet First Dance music Swan Theme - Tchaikovsky Dance of the Blessed Spirits - Christoph Willibald Gluck Habanera - Georges Bizet The Blue Danube - Johann Strauss II A Whole New World - Alan Menkin & Tim Rice Boléro - Maurice Ravel Glasgow Love Theme - Craig Armstrong Bohemian Rhapsody - Vitamin String Quartet Halo - Brooklyn Duo Butterfly Waltz - Brian Crain Reception Music Summertime - George Gershwin What Makes You Beautiful - the Piano Guys Dance of the Knights - Sergei Prokofiev The Entertainer - Scott Joplin All You Need Is Love - Vitamin String Quartet Galop Infernal - Jacques Offenbach William Tell Overture - Gioachino Rossini Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) - Cinematic Pop I'm Called Little Buttercup - Gilbert & Sullivan Danse Macabre - Camille Saints-Saens
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Category: wedding songs
60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (1)

If you've always dreamed of having a traditional white wedding straight out of a Jane Austen novel, then you're going to need some classical music that befits that theme.

Although it's wonderful that there are so many opportunities in this day and age to wed in as unique a fashion as we desire, not everyone wants to get hitched in converted barns with live bands putting their own modern twist on 'Here Comes the Bride'. Some couples just want the perfect church wedding - and we're all for that too.

Which Classical Music is right for my Wedding Ceremony?

'Classical music' is a broad term for an even broader range of compositions in a variety of styles written over hundreds of years, so picking your favourite few pieces from the thousands on offer can be a daunting task.

Fear not, however - we've narrowed down your search and selected our favourite classical pieces which we think would best suit each stage of your wedding ceremony.

Looking for live ceremony music to really get the hairs tingling? Check out our fantastic roster of classical wedding musicians featuring everything from string quartets and violinists to pianists, harpists.

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Prelude music

As your guests arrive at your wedding venue, choose a few of the following to establish your elegant tone. Plan for about 15 minutes of mid-paced yet majestic music to both give everyone time to find their seats and get them ready for the main event:

March of the Priests - Mozart

Taken from Mozart's famed opera 'The Magic Flute, this is a slow and stately piece that suggests an air of grandeur - preparing your guests for the bride's grand entrance!

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (3)March of the Priests - Mozart

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Moonlight Sonata - Ludwig van Beethoven

A sparse yet atmospheric piano piece from the legendary Beethoven will ramp your guests' feelings of anticipation right up.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (4)Moonlight Sonata - Ludwig van Beethoven

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Air on the G String - Johann Sebastian Bach

August Willhelmj's arrangement of Bach's original piece 'Air' is played in a lower key, enabling a solo violinist to play the entire melody on their instrument's lowest string, the titular “G”.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (5)Air on the G String - Johann Sebastian Bach

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Alla Hornpipe - George Frideric Handel

Taken from Handel's 'Water Music', this piece sounds just as triumphant when played as organ music as it does by an orchestra.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (6)Alla Hornpipe - George Frideric Handel

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Toccata - Charles-Marie Widor

This flurry of organ keys will both accentuate your church wedding setting and keep your guests excited for what's to come.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (7)Toccata - Charles-Marie Widor

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Spring (the Four Seasons) - Antonio Vivaldi

This concerto remains perhaps the most popular of Vivaldi's musical interpretations of the different times of year - and, with the springtime theme of new life, is also the most appropriate for a celebration of new beginnings.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (8)Spring (the Four Seasons) - Antonio Vivaldi

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Méditation - Jules Massenet

Massenet composed this solo violin piece, which has since become a favourite among violinists, for his opera 'Thaïs'.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (9)Méditation - Jules Massenet

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The Swan - Camille Saint-Saens

From Saint-Saens' 'Carnival of the Animals' this piece evokes the beauty and mystery of the bird that inspired it.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (10)The Swan - Camille Saint-Saens

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Träumerei - Robert Schumann

The title of Schumann's composition (from his collection 'Kinderszenen', meaning 'Scenes from Childhood') is the German for 'Dreaming', and the piece itself was used as the theme for the 1947 film 'Song of Love'.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (11)Träumerei - Robert Schumann

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Morning Mood - Edvard Grieg

This piece of incidental music, which Grieg composed for a scene in the play 'Peer Gynt' to reflect the morning sun breaking through the clouds, will be familiar to most - and enjoyed by all!

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (12)Morning Mood - Edvard Grieg

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Classical Processional music

As the bridal party enters, all eyes will be drawn to the beautiful white dress. This is the part of your wedding ceremony that you want to last forever in everybody's memories, so choose a piece from this list that lives up to your spotlight moment:

Bridal Chorus - Richard Wagner

Although it may seem an obvious choice, Wagner's Bridal Chorus is a popular piece to walk down the aisle to for a reason.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (13)Bridal Chorus - Richard Wagner

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Canon in D - Johann Pachelbel

Pachelbel's Canon in D is instantly recognisable, from the instant the solo cello strikes up.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (14)Canon in D - Johann Pachelbel

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Jesu, Joy Of Man's Desiring - Johann Sebastian Bach

This rapturous choral piece is a popular choice at Easter and Christmas ceremonies, as well as weddings.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (15)Jesu, Joy Of Man’s Desiring - Johann Sebastian Bach

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The Prince of Denmark's March - Jeremiah Clarke

This popular piece, also known as 'the Trumpet Voluntary', was played during the Royal Wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (16)The Prince of Denmark’s March - Jeremiah Clarke

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Ode to Joy - Ludwig van Beethoven

Beethoven's instrumental hymn is the perfect processional piece for a church wedding.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (17)Ode to Joy - Ludwig van Beethoven

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Ave Verum Corpus - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

A stunning piece of choral music inspired by the Eucharist chant of the same name (meaning 'Hail, True Body', this also sounds phenomenal when performed on the strings.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (18)Ave Verum Corpus - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

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Flower Duet - Léo Delibes

A lovely vocal duet for a soprano and mezzo-soprano, this classic processional song was originally composed for Delibes' opera 'Lakmé' and is still used today in film and television.

The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba - George Frideric Handel

This favourite section of Handel's oratorio 'Solomon' was played at the 2012 Olympics when James Bond met Queen Elizabeth II. As the name would suggest, Handel's 'Arrival' is more than a piece of music: it's an announcement.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (20)The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba - George Frideric Handel

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Edward Elgar - Salut d'Amour

One of Elgar's best-known compositions, we think this 'Love's Greeting' sounds best as intended - on piano and violin.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (21)Edward Elgar - Salut d'Amour

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Ave Maria - Franz Schubert

Originally conceived as a vocal piece, Schubert's gorgeous melody is a staple of wedding ceremonies - and also sounds sublime on the violin.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (22)Ave Maria - Franz Schubert

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Signing the Register

An interlude of sorts, this part of your wedding ceremony deserves a classical score as much as any other. When you and your beloved sign the wedding register and become an official married couple, keep your guests entertained with ten or so minutes of music to keep the spell unbroken:

Cello Suite No.1 In G Major - Johan Sebastian Bach

A warm, resonant cello suite, such as this famous piece for an unaccompanied solo cello from the great mind of Bach, will keep your guests comfortable while they wait.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (23)Cello Suite No.1 In G Major - Johan Sebastian Bach

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To A Wild Rose - Edward McDowell

From McDowell's 'Woodland Sketches' suite, this charming melody later served as the inspiration for the Elvis Presley song 'Am I Ready',

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (24)To A Wild Rose - Edward McDowell

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Gabriel's Oboe - Ennio Morricone

The unforgettable theme from the Mission will help convey the sheer emotion of this moment to your guests.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (25)Gabriel’s Oboe - Ennio Morricone

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Largo from Symphony No.9 - Antonín Leopold Dvořák

A melody as moving as it is memorable, the Largo from Dvořák's Symphony No.9 'From the New World' was later reworked into the song 'Goin' Home', which was in turn given the Big Band treatment by Glenn Miller and His Orchestra.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (26)Largo from Symphony No.9 - Antonín Leopold Dvorák

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Panis Angelicus - César Franck

Meaning 'Bread of Angels' in Latin, Franck set this most popular verse of the longer hymn 'Sacris Solemniis' to music - and it sounds wonderful both as orchestral and as organ music.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (27)Panis Angelicus - César Franck

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Für Elise - Ludwig van Beethoven

Possibly the most well known piece ever composed for the piano, you guests will be pleased to hear something they recognise.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (28)Für Elise - Ludwig van Beethoven

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O Mio Babbino Caro - Giacomo Puccini

This enchanting aria from Puccini's opera 'Gianni Schicchi ' sounds divine whether the soprano is accompanied by a piano or a harp, and has featured in a range of media from 'Captain Corelli's Mandolin' to 'Downton Abbey'.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (29)O Mio Bambino Caro - Giacomo Puccini

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Clair de Lune - Claude Debussy

Romantic and wistful, this is the third - and most well-known - movement from Debussy's 'Suite bergamasque'.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (30)Clair de Lune - Claude Debussy

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Aria da capo - Glenn Gould

Gould's fantastic recording of Bach's 'Goldberg Variations' gained the pianist worldwide fame overnight.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (31)Aria da capo - Glenn Gould

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A Thousand Years - Vitamin String Quartet

You don't have to be a 'Twilight' fan to appreciate the beauty of this instrumental rendition of this popular modern tune from Christina Perri.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (32)A Thousand Years - Vitamin String Quartet

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Precessional music

Congratulations and celebrations are in order once you've officially tied the knot - here's an upbeat selection to put a spring in the step of each guests as they leave for your reception:

Wedding March - Felix Mendelssohn

This piece of incidental music from Mendelssohn's score for Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' is widely used for wedding ceremony scenes in cinema.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (33)Wedding March - Felix Mendelssohn

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Eine Kleine Nachtmusik - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

One of the most famous classical compositions of all time, your wedding party will find the allegro tempo of this 'Little Serenade' of Mozart's to be irresistibly lively.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (34)Eine Kleine Nachtmusik - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

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Bourrée in E minor - Johann Sebastian Bach

A popular piece originally composed for the lute, Bach's Bourrée has found itself into the repertoire of many a classical guitarist, having inspired everyone from Paul McCartney to Tenacious D.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (35)Bourrée in E minor - Johann Sebastian Bach

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Crown Imperial: A Coronation March - Sir William Walton

A driving march with a real stride to it like this one will help your guests to their feet.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (36)Crown Imperial: A Coronation March - Sir William Walton

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Symphony No. 3 - Camille Saints-Saens

Also known as the 'Organ Symphony', a section of this piece was later reworked by Scott Fitzgerlad into the pop song 'If I Had Words' which was famously used as the main theme for the film 'Babe'.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (37)Symphony No.3 - Camille Saints-Saens

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Jupiter - Gustav Holst

The 'Bringer of Jollity' from Holst's famous suite 'the Planets' sounds like the start of a grand adventure - a suitable soundtrack to leave your wedding venue to.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (38)Jupiter - Gustav Holst

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Music for the Royal Fireworks - George Frideric Handel

This rousing piece was performed - complete with actual fireworks - at the Buckingham Palace gardens for Queen Elizabeth II's Golden Jubilee.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (39)Music for the Royal Fireworks - George Frideric Handel

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Largo al factotum - Gioachino Rossini

Rossini's merry aria from 'The Barber of Seville' will soon have your guests skipping along to your wedding reception venue. The fact that the title demands the listener to “make way” won't hurt either!.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (40)Largo al factotum - Gioachino Rossini

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Winter (the Four Seasons) - Antonio Vivaldi

Our second entry from Vivaldi's classic concertos. Things have cooled off a little since the excitement of 'Spring' - by contrast, 'Winter' is calm and dignified, and brings with it a sense of things coming to a natural end before a new beginning.

Concerning Hobbits - Vitamin String Quartet

Playing this upbeat Howard Shore's unforgettable score from the hugely successful 'Lord of the Rings' trilogy on your wedding day is bound to please music and film fans alike.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (42)Concerning Hobbits - Vitamin String Quartet

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First Dance music

Your first dance as a newly married couple has to be to a song that's important to you both. We recommend finding a musical balance between romance for yourselves and fun for your guests - though they'll all be getting their turn on the dance floor soon enough:

Swan Theme - Tchaikovsky

The most famous theme from 'Swan Lake', one of the most famous ballets of all time, is surely worthy of consideration for an elegant first dance as newlyweds.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (43)Swan Theme - Tchaikovsky

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Dance of the Blessed Spirits - Christoph Willibald Gluck

From Gluck's opera about Orpheus and Eurydice, this piece accompanies a scene set in Elysium, the paradise of Ancient Greece - and we're sure you'll feel like you're in heaven when you dance to it.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (44)Dance of the Blessed Spirits - Christoph Willibald Gluck

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Habanera - Georges Bizet

This playful aria from Bizet's beloved 'Carmen' will be just as delightful an introduction for you when you hit the dance floor as it was for this opera's title character.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (45)Habanera - Georges Bizet

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The Blue Danube - Johann Strauss II

This famous waltz runs the gamut from grand and sweeping to fun and upbeat - another great segue between the wedding ceremony and the wedding reception.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (46)The Blue Danube - Johann Strauss

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A Whole New World - Alan Menkin & Tim Rice

The intricate harmonies from the iconic duet from Disney's 'Aladdin' rank it highly among classic wedding songs - and they sound incredible when performed by a live pianist or string quartet.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (47)A Whole New World - Alan Menkin & Tim Rice

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Boléro - Maurice Ravel

Although the full version might be a little too long at almost 16 minutes, you may wish to take some inspiration from Torvill and Dean's famous ice-dancing win at the 1984 Winter Olympics - a much more manageable 6 (which was also their perfect score!).

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (48)Boléro - Maurice Ravel

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Glasgow Love Theme - Craig Armstrong

This beautiful piano piece was put to memorable use during Andrew Lincoln and Keira Knightley's scene in the film 'Love Actually'.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (49)Glasgow Love Theme - Craig Armstrong

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Bohemian Rhapsody - Vitamin String Quartet

This classical twist on Queen's unforgettable masterpiece is a great way to bridge the gap between classical music and modern pop and rock.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (50)Bohemian Rhapsody - Vitamin String Quartet

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Halo - Brooklyn Duo

We're sure that this soulful rendition of Beyoncé's hit 'Halo', performed on two cellos and a piano, would make Queen B proud.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (51)Halo - Brooklyn Duo

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Butterfly Waltz - Brian Crain

As delicate and beautiful as its namesake, this is a lovely choice for a first dance number, whether on solo piano or as a duet with a violin.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (52)Butterfly Waltz - Brian Crain

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Reception Music

This is the stage of your wedding ceremony where everyone will want to let their hair down, have a dance, and above all celebrate you - the happy couple! Be sure to save your most upbeat picks for this part of your special day - while keeping things classy, of course:

Summertime - George Gershwin

When performed on the piano, this jazzy number from Gershwin's opera 'Porgy and Bess' makes for perfect cocktail music.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (53)Summertime - George Gershwin

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What Makes You Beautiful - the Piano Guys

The Piano Guys became an internet sensation with their endlessly inventive approaches to covering modern popular music in a classical style - and their rendition of One Direction's 'What Makes You Beautiful' is no exception.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (54)What Makes You Beautiful - the Piano Guys

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Dance of the Knights - Sergei Prokofiev

Introduced to a new generation via being used as the theme tune for the TV show 'The Apprentice', this famous piece from Prokofiev's ballet 'Romeo and Juliet' may have seemed a little too menacing earlier on in the ceremony is both recognisable and rhythmical enough to get your guests moving.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (55)Dance of the Knights - Sergei Prokofiev

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The Entertainer - Scott Joplin

Joplin wrote this well-known ragtime classic for the piano - but having a string quartet perform it instead will be a pleasant surprise for your friends and family.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (56)The Entertainer - Scott Joplin

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All You Need Is Love - Vitamin String Quartet

A classic Beatles love song reimagined for the violin, viola and cello - a winning combination!

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (57)All You Need Is Love - Vitamin String Quartet

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Galop Infernal - Jacques Offenbach

Thanks to its popularity with the Parisian cabarets of the 19th century, this tune is now associated with the 'can-can' dance.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (58)Galop Infernal - Jacques Offenbach

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William Tell Overture - Gioachino Rossini

Thanks to its use as the theme for 'the Lone Ranger', the overture to Rossini's opera 'William Tell' always bring horseback riding to mind.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (59)William Tell Overture - Gioachino Rossini

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Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) - Cinematic Pop

A guaranteed floor-filler at the best of times, this re-imagining of the Eurythmics' hit song accentuates the strings for added drama.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (60)Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) - Cinematic Pop

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I'm Called Little Buttercup - Gilbert & Sullivan

This merry little tune is a favourite from the G&S comic opera 'H.M.S Pinafore' and will soon have your guests swaying along as if they're at sea.

60 Classical Wedding Songs for a Traditional Ceremony (61)I’m Called Little Buttercup - Gilbert & Sullivan

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Danse Macabre - Camille Saints-Saens

Your guests may recognise this wickedly entertaining waltz as the theme tune from the TV show 'Jonathan Creek'.

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