Thursday, April 28, 2011

A prelude to end all preludes (and much, much more)

So, as we all know, The Royal Wedding is happening tomorrow. (Photo at left from One of my musician friends just shared on facebook an update to the Royal Wedding Website -- there are lots of unnecessary caps in these matters -- announcing what the Music for the Wedding Service will be. Traditional brides, take note! There are surely some good ideas in here for your organist -- or your full orchestra, should you have one on hand for your wedding.

The prelude will kick off with four pieces for organ, followed by seven -- seven! -- orchestral works. (That right there is a full-length recital in itself.) Then follows a Fanfare and three Processionals (for the Queen, the Clergy and the Bride); three Hymns during the service; a choral Anthem and Motet; the National Anthem; another choral piece while Kate and Wills sign the Register; and another Fanfare from the Fanfare Team (I did not make that up, I promise). Finally, a recessional for the happy couple and a postlude of two pieces, concluding with everyone's favorite interminable commencement ditty, Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance.

Yowza. If you're curious about the specifics (that's you, future brides looking for music ideas), allow me to refer you to this background page on ye olde Royal Wedding Website. All kidding aside, I like to see a service that incorporates so much music -- not that it could have been any other way -- even if it is all quite conventional and expected. They've balanced out the obviousness of the selections by adding in a recent premiere and a couple of pieces commissioned just for the occasion. (We should all be so lucky!)

I'm looking forward to hearing all of the service music, especially the new works -- I'm definitely not going to catch much of the prelude, which probably starts at 5 a.m. or so over here. (And I obviously am excited to see Kate's Royal Wedding Dress and the sure-to-be whimsical millinery in the congregation.) I just hope the wedding wraps up before I have to leave for work! Can't we get the day off too?

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