Wedding Music

Millar Organ The musical staff of Alice Millar Chapel will assist you in planning beautiful and meaningful music for your wedding ceremony.  An organist from our staff must be engaged and present for all wedding ceremonies held in our chapels.

The pipe organ in Millar Chapel is a 100 rank four-manual Aeolian-Skinner, and one of the most magnificent organs in the region. The pipe organ in Vail Chapel is a beautiful two-manual mechanical action organ by Casavant Frères. We have provided musical suggestions on the website  which can be nicely realized on either organ.


In keeping with the nature of weddings as worship gatherings which are genuinely joyous celebrations before God, the Director of Music and Music Associate have the responsibility of maintaining an appropriate musical quality. We request that all music used during the ceremony be appropriate to the context of a sacred setting and does not carry a completely secular connotation. The selections found below are a small representation of the musical possibilities for your ceremony and our musicians will honor special requests as they are able. Most of these selections may also be realized on the piano.

There are basically four parts of the wedding service which call for music:

The Prelude

Music played prior to the service while guests are being seated. Prelude music generally begins 15 minutes before the Processional.

The Processional

The music to which the wedding party enters the church. One or two pieces may be chosen to accomodate the nuptial party and bride or groom.

The Service

The main part of the ceremony can include quite a bit of music, or none at all, depending on your preferences. Some couples decide to have vocal or instrumental pieces, perhaps a congregational hymn, while others have no music between the Processional and Recessional.

The Recessional

The music to which the wedding party exits the church, followed by the guests.

Sample Music Media

Suggested Wedding Music Selections

Music Composer
(Generally, four or five selections;  approx. 20 min. of music)
Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme ("Sleepers Wake") (O, T) J. S. Bach
Air de Trompette (T) G. P. Telemann
In dir ist Freude ("In Thee is Gladness") (O)
(Zimbelstern, or bell cluster in Millar only)
J. S. Bach
Jesu, Joy of Our Desiring (O, T, Str., arr. for others) J. S. Bach
Toccata G. B. Martini
Sonata in E-flat Major (O) W. A. Mozart
Arioso (O, Str.) J. S. Bach
Trumpet Tunes and Airs (T) - La Majestie G. P. Telemann
Trumpet Tunes and Airs (T) - La Grace G. P. Telemann
Trumpet Tunes and Airs (T) - Con bravura G. P. Telemann
Sonata 1, Trumpet solo, 1st movement (T) G. Viviani
Sonata 1, Trumpet solo, Presto (T) G. Viviani
Sonatina in C Major (for Two Trumpets) (2 T) Johann Pezel
Air from Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major (Str., O) J.S. Bach
(Generally, one piece is played)
The Prince of Denmark's March (O, T, arr. for others) Jeremiah Clarke
Trumpet Tune (T) Philip B. Catelinet
Trumpet Tune in D Major David N. Johnson
Processional in E-flat Major (O, T) David N. Johnson
Prelude to Te Deum (T) Marc-Antoine Charpentier
Voluntary in C Major for Two Trumpets and Organ (O, 2 T) Henry Purcell
March from Parthenope (O, T) G. F. Handel
(Generally, one is selected, sometimes two)
Rondeau (O, T, arr. for others) Jean Joseph Mouret
Hornpipe from Water Music (O, T, arr. for others) G. F. Handel
Concerto for Two Trumpets (2 T) Antonio Vivaldi
The Rejoicing from the Royal Fireworks Music (Str., O, T) G. F. Handel
Trumpet Tune (O, T, arr. for others) Jeremiah Clarke
Finale from Organ Concerto No. 5 (O, Str.) G. F. Handel
"Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee" (O, T, others) Hymn, arr. from Beethoven
Vocal Solos
(Generally, one to three are selected)
Ave Maria Franz Schubert
Bist du bei mir (usually soprano or tenor) J. S. Bach
Wedding Song Heinrich Schuetz
The Lord's Prayer Flor Peeters
The Call Ralph Vaughan Williams


Suggestions not heard on the website:

Music Composer
O Lord Most Holy César Franck
The Lord's Prayer Malotte
Simple Song (from Mass - usually soprano or tenor) Leonard Bernstein

Selections are emailed to Eric Budzynski, Music Associate & organist at

Explanation of Instrumental Key for Wedding Music

String quartet

  • O = organ
  • T = trumpet (with organ)
  • Str. = String Quartet

Example: Jesu, Joy of Our Desiring (O, T, Str., arr. for others) -  J. S. Bach
(This selection can be played by organ alone, organ and trumpet, strings, or with a number of other instruments)

Example: Air de Trompette (T) - G. P. Telemann    
(This selection can be played when a trumpet is used, but not by organ alone)

Example: Sonata in E-flat Major (O) - W. A. Mozart

A Word About Vocal Pieces

Vocalists singing Bach The use of vocal soloists is welcomed.  Excellent singers are available from the Alice Millar Chapel Choir, and the greater Chicago area.  The musical samples includes some suggestions for vocal music.  Since every singer's repertoire is different, it is best to consult with the soloist in selecting vocal repertoire.

Soloists usually sing one to three selections.  In the standard wedding ceremony, solos often come just before the Processional, after the Questions, after the Pastoral Prayer, or at the Lighting of the Candle.  Any text that is appropriate for a religious service may be used for the wedding ceremony.  If you have a favorite secular song, consider having it played during your wedding reception.

Some Common Questions

How should I use this wedding information and music samples?

Please read this material completely and listen to the selections.  Couples may wish to include other family members in the selection process. Contact  Eric Budzynski, Music Associate (organist) or  Dr. Stephen Alltop at any time to ask questions, and to help finalize your choices. Please send your selections by email to Eric Budzynski ( All wedding parties, regardless of whether they are utilizing Chapel musical staff, must submit their specific musical selections to the Music Associate in writing no later than 1 month prior to their wedding.

Am I limited to the selections listed here?

The pieces listed here are offered as suggestions. We will be happy to accommodate appropriate requests for other repertoire whenever possible.

How do we engage organists, additional musicians, or soloists?

The Music Associate will be happy to engage whatever musicians you may desire.  Please make an intial contact with the Music Associate NO LATER THAN THREE MONTHS PRIOR TO THE CEREMONY to the Music Associate.  Please note that, once a musician’s services are engaged at the request of the wedding party, the wedding party is responsible for compensating that musician in accordance with the established fees.  Some of Chicago's finest musicians perform in ceremonies at Millar Chapel, so it is recommended that arrangements be made as far in advance as possible to ensure their availability. If you desire one or more trumpets, a brass quartet or quintet, excellent players can be engaged from the Millar Brass Ensemble.

The Music Associate will be happy to engage a soloist on your behalf. Professional singers of every voice type can be engaged.

If you wish to arrange for a soloist on your own, please be aware of the following requirements:

The soloist(s) must be of professional vocal quality and capable of projecting without amplification.

If organ or piano accompaniment is required by the organist, music must be provided at least two weeks prior to the wedding in the key and specific arrangement required by the soloist. The organist's stipend includes a rehearsal with the soloist on the day of the ceremony but would require additional compensation if another rehearsal would need to be arranged.

What are the musician's fees?
(if your wedding was booked before 7-1-2014, the base fee for the organist is $250)


  • Wedding without Soloist or Instrumentalist - $275.00
  • Wedding Ceremony accompanying one Soloist or Instrumentalist - $300.00
  • Personal Meeting in addition to phone consultations - $100.00
  • If organist must oversee rehearsal in place of a minister - $125.00

Instrumental or Vocal soloist: $225.00

When is the music rehearsed? Does the Organist attend the rehearsal?

Musicians will coordinate and rehearse selections prior to the wedding ceremony. Chapel organists DO NOT attend rehearsals for ceremonies officiated by Chapel clergy (they will confer on order and cues prior to ceremony). When guest clergy are involved, organists may attend rehearsals (for an additional fee of $125) by request to confirm cues for the Processional, Recessional, and any other music in the ceremony but this is not normally neccesary.

When should the musician's be paid?

Musician’s honoraria must be mailed or delivered to Alice Millar Chapel no later than one week prior to the wedding (c/o Eric Budzynski, Music Associate, Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL, 60208). Please provide checks made out to the individual musicians.

Wedding Music Checklist

Piano Player

  1. Receive Wedding Information upon reserving Chapel for Wedding Ceremony
  2. Review Music on website and Wedding Information.  Contact the Music Associate with any questions
  3. Submit request for Organist or any additional musicians by email to the Music Associate no later than three months prior to the ceremony (required of all wedding parties)
  4. Send musical selections to Music Associate by email as soon as possible.  Selections must be submitted at least one month prior to ceremony (required of all wedding parties)
  5. Musician’s honoraria sent or delivered to Music Associate at Alice Millar Chapel at least one week prior to wedding ceremony