String Quartets playing at Eastnor Castle
- a traditional string quartet comprising 2 violins, viola, cello (e.g. the KI Quartet Ref.6488)
- a flute & string quartet comprising flute, violin, viola, cello (e.g. the MS Flute & String Quartet Ref.2001.2)
They differ in the repertoire that they offer and the choreography of the wedding ceremony at the Castle, as follows:
Different quartets offer different repertoire. For example the MS Flute & String Quartet Ref.2001.2 offer a repertoire of baroque, classical and music from the shows, whereas the KI Quartet Ref.6488 offer a repertoire that also extends to pop covers. So before you book you need to consider what kind of music you want for your day.
Ceremony at Eastnor Church
If the wedding ceremony is at Eastnor church, you can book the quartet to play at the church. Typically they would play for half an hour as guests arrive, for the entrance of the Bride, during the signing of the register, and as the couple make their exit. While photos are being taken outside the church, the quartet move to the Castle to play as guests arrive for the drinks reception.
(Hymns are normally accompanied by the organ, though occasionally hymns have been played by the quartet, but there are issues of the location of the quartet in the church and the repertoire. If this is something you want, please state at the time of booking.)
Civil Ceremony and Drinks Reception
During the drinks reception, whether it is after a church or civil ceremony, the quartet move to whichever location in the castle is appropriate, and if the weather is suitable, can play on the veranda. (See Outdoor Performance)
The choreography of the civil ceremony varies dependent on the quartet line up. A typical scenario is described below:
Traditional String Quartet
The quartet would typically play for half an hour in the Great Hall as guests arrive for drinks. If the bride is descending the stairs, the whole quartet move to the foot of the stairs and play in that location as Bride and Bridesmaids make their descent and lead the guests across the Great Hall into the Gothic Room. Once most guests have left the Great Hall, the quartet move to the Gothic Room to play for the signing of the register and the exit of the couple to the Octagon Room.
After the ceremony, the quartet move to wherever is appropriate to play during the drinks reception. Although the quartet often play during the wedding breakfast, this generally doesn't happen at Eastnor Castle as there can be space and access restrictions depending on guest numbers and which room is used for the meal. If you would like the quartet to play during the meal, please discuss this with the Castle organisers who will advise whether or not it is practical in your case.
Flute & String Quartet
With this line-up, just the flute moves to the foot of the stairs and the other three musicians move to the Gothic Room. Bride and Bridesmaids descend the stairs to solo flute and are lead across the Great Hall into the Gothic Room by the flautist. As they enter the Gothic Room, the rest of the quartet join in. If led in by the flute, the entrance music used is Clarke's Trumpet Voluntary.
Related phrases: Eastnor Castle