Hiring & Booking string quartets to jazz

Request: I want an all male string quartet for my wedding ceremony and breakfast ;     this is a more unusual request, as it is normally a request for an all female string quartet. The first way to get an idea ever quartet is all male is to look at the photographs of the quartet on the website, but beware, this may not reflect the gender make-up of the quartet on the light. String quartets, like most music groups, have more than one person who can play in each location of the quartet, for example there may be two first violins to 2nd violins to cellos and two viola players players who regularly play in the quartet. Some string quartets will have up to 7 or eight people on each instrument who play regularly in the quartet. This is allowed for in the contract provided that the musical performance and feel of the performance is not materially affected (i.e. that if you listen to the quartet with your eyes closed, you wouldn't tell the difference, and they cover the same repertoire.)

To most people, whether the string quartet had male or female players would not be material to the performance, (this would be different in a vocal group where there was a male or female singer, because the sound of the singing would be totally different, but the violin sound the same whether it's played by a man or woman, and although the style of playing may differ between players, this is not a gender issue but a training and temperament issue. With a classical string quartet there is very little difference in playing style because of the rigourous this and standardisation of music college courses. There is more difference in the playing style of a string quartet from the 1950s compared with one of the present day that is about global style of playing rather than individual style. Having said that, there is difference between string quartets in how they play a given piece,, some might be very lyrical and relaxing in style of playing, others may be quite upbeat. So you should listen to the sound samples. Neither style is right or wrong, it's just a matter of preference, rather like with you listen to BBC radio three will prefer classic FM. They will play many of the same pieces music, but they will choose recordings that are perhaps different in style to suit the radio stations image.

So, if you want an all male string quartet (or an all female string quartet for that matter,) or any combination of genders, heights, ages, weights, with or without glasses, black blonde hair, one head or two per person, then you should state this on the booking form at the time of booking so that can make sure that the string quartet will comply to your requirements or let you know if they can't (in which case you would have the option of cancelling the booking or booking a different string quartet who could meet your requirements).

Request: I want an all female barn dance band for my wedding ceremony and breakfast; this is perfectly possible, there are some all female barn dance bands, but they are not that common, so if this is what you want you should book well ahead of your wedding day. It is less common to have an all female barn dance band, or ceilidh band, than an all female string quartet. In the last twenty years or so the classical music business has changed from being mostly male dominated to being mostly female dominated. Part of the reason is the sexualisation of violin and cello playing that has come about by the use of string sections in pop videos, where the instrumentalists are normally playing something that is incredibly simplistic, but are invariably female, in the early 20s, beautiful, slim, and is often not blonde. This has gone on from the pop industry to classical music concerts, where instead of just advertising an orchestral concert in a concert hall advertising magazine of events, it is often fronted by a beautiful female violinist looking vague and wafting. A very strange way to add ties a string orchestra or Symphony Orchestra, but they go, that's the trend. And I suppose with performers like Nigel Kennedy, who is a superb violinist but also a top-class entertainer, he has on many occasions surrounded himself by a bevy of beautiful string players. Well, that's showbiz for you!

So going back to the all female barn dance band, as with string quartets, looking the photographs against the bands website, but this is, for the same reasons, not an absolute guide to who will be playing on the night. (Read the section above about all male string quartets for more information on this.)

Request: I want an experience ceilidh band for my wedding ceremony and breakfast; ceilidh bands on our site are experienced and have all done very many wedding ceilidh is, but not many of them will have done music for a wedding reception. So what you're wanting is a ceilidh band whose musicians also play as a session folk band and played the kind of music in the style that is appropriate, that is suitable as entrance music, music for the signing the register and recessional music for a wedding, and also the kind of easy to listen to background music that would be appropriate at a drinks reception. When you send your enquiry, specify this so that suitable bands can be suggested.  


Request: I want an all male ceilidh band for my wedding ceremony and breakfast ;   this is exactly the same as the request for the all female ceilidh band or all female barn dance band, except that there will be a lot more choice. There are many more all male band than all female bands. In part I expect this is a question of the need to handle heavy PA equipment in and out of cars, set up heavy speakers on stands et cetera. This isn't every woman's cup of tea, though I am by no means saying this is always the case as in my own ceilidh band the female players are just as active at setting up and taking down the equipment, and most of them workout on gym machines so are probably a lot fitter than I am!        

Query: wedding music playlist ceremony;   this has been covered earlier in my ramblings.            

Request: find a harpist for my civil partnership ceremony; how easy it is to find a harpist for a civil partnership ceremony depends to some extent on where in the country the partnership ceremony is going to be held . There is a strong tradition of Welsh play, so there is large concentration of harpists in Wales. Unfortunately, most weddings in the UK take place along way from Wales, so this isn't very helpful. There are also concentrations of harpist in centres like London, with this orchestral and concert scene, Manchester with its music college. Best thing is, look on the website and send an enquiry.              Question. Wedding songs for civil ceremony and wedding ceremony order; this is something that is best discussed directly with the leader of the string quartet or the harpist who is playing for your wedding ceremony. They can recommend a range of music that they know from experience is suitable for a wedding.           

 Query: find a ceilidh band for my wedding  ceremony;    this has been covered elsewhere under barn dance bands for wedding ceremonies.   

 Query: songs for civil wedding ceremony;       wedding ceremony songs list;         what you can play at civil wedding ceremony is probably more restricted than what can be played in a church wedding ceremony. British law states that music with religious connotations must not be played during a civil wedding ceremony. This can be rather difficult for baroque and classical music as the church was a major benefactor of the arts and thus many pieces of well-known music are religious in their origin. However there is plenty of music left but is not in any way religious. The string quartet, harpist or pianist whose playing at your wedding should know what is and is not permissible and sometimes the registrar asked for a list of music so that they can check.

Request: find a ceilidh band for my civil partnership ceremony and the evening reception; there is no problems finding a ceilidh band for a civil partnership ceremony or evening reception, as there is a lot of choice of very good ceilidh bands throughout the UK on the mid-summer music website. We played at many memorable civil partnership receptions with my own ceilidh band, including one that I recall that was held in the Swindon transport Museum, with the dancers dancing amongst mighty Railway steam engines. The acoustics were pretty good to. Presumably the railway carriages and steam engines being made of steel and other hard reflective materials, were good resonators and reflectors of sound. In fact playing with string quartet, ceilidh band or jazz band in a railway museums is much like playing in a large church or cathedral for a wedding ceremony, in that you are surrounded by reflective sound services that reflect and amplify the music. In one case it steel railway engines in other case the arches and ceilings that are made of similarly hard reflective stonework. The worst places to play with an acoustic group such as string quartet, are modern hotels where there are no hard riff and reflective surfaces in the room. Floors are thick pile carpets, walls are often sliding partitioning, and roofs or ceilings are sound absorbing tiles. This makes the acoustics truly awful.