Flute Quartet Wedding Ceremony Music at the Donovan Pavilion in Vail, Colorado

At the beginning of autumn, my flute quartet (flute, violin, viola, cello) headed down to Vail, Colorado to play music for a wedding ceremony at the Donovan Pavilion. The drive up to Vail was the most beautiful drive of the whole year. The first snow had just fallen the night before and the aspens were in peak season with their golden yellow leaves. When the sun shone, the aspens glowed, gradually making way to dark pines dusted with fresh snow at the tops of the mountains. Behind the mountain peeks, storm clouds made a dramatic and imposing backdrop.

The rain and wind from a large cold front was quickly moving in, and when it was time for our quartet to start playing prelude music, it was sprinkling rain and the wind blew in from the west, bringing in clouds and cold temperatures. We couldn’t play the wedding music outside because of the weather so, with the help of my high quality sound system, we were able to play indoors and still be heard clearly outside. We played a mix of contemporary music and hymns for the prelude and then played a traditional processional.

The wedding ceremony was so elegant and the wedding party braved the cold weather so that the couple could have their dream of an outdoor ceremony. The flowers and decor were romantic and glamorous with old-fashioned deep pink roses, greenery, and candles everywhere. The tables were covered in rich blue cloths accented by branches covered in deep gold. The color contrasts and textures were vibrant and luxurious.

Christen is amazing!!! She is such a talented musician. She made my wedding vision come to life! – from the bride, Married in Vail, Colorado

Samples from Prelude Music:
Make You Feel My Love (Adele), All You Need is Love (Beatles), Reign of Love (Coldplay), Come Thou Fount, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

Processional and Ceremony Music:
Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring (Bach) ~ seating of the parents, bridesmaids and groomsmen, ring bearers, flower girl
Canon in D (Pachelbel) ~ Bride
Ave Verum Corpus (Mozart) ~ Cord of three strands ceremony
Wedding March (Mendelssohn) ~ Recessional
Just the Way You Are (Bruno Mars) ~ Postlude

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Planner: Ann Marlin of Cloud 9 Bliss
Photographer: Cassidy Brooke
Videographer: Emily Brumley of Storyteller Films
Musicians: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens, Flute Quartet
DJ: Elite Entertainment

Rain or shine, make your wedding day sparkle with our wonderful Flute Quartet Music >

Flute and Harp Duo at Mount Princeton Hot Springs in Colorado

Photos courtesy of Adore Photography

It was a chilly late summer morning when I left my house to play my flute for a wedding at Mount Princeton Hot Springs. The drive took me quickly into the mountains and even though it was a long drive, the scenery was so beautiful that the time flew by. The changes in the location and elevation continually brought new vistas. Sometimes I drove thorough deep pine forests and at other times I was surrounded by airy aspen trees, their brilliant yellow leaves sparkling in the bright autumn sunshine. At other times, there were low scrub lands or open grassy areas that stretched for miles, reminding me of the Colorado plains.

The wedding venue and lawn at Mount Princeton Hot Springs had the feeling of grandeur. During the day, the reception hall was lit with golden sunlight coming through the many high windows, and at night the indoor lights shone out, illuminating the entire building. The hall opened out to a large sloping lawn with perfectly manicured emerald green grass. A river ran behind the ceremony site making a beautiful musical song that added to the ambiance of the location. The backdrop for this scene were the strangely white Chalk Cliffs that glowed in the sunshine. There was also a great view of Mount Princeton and Mt. Antero, dark with pines.

The sun shone in the bright blue sky and it was a beautiful day for an outdoor wedding ceremony. It was extremely windy, so I used my Bose amplification system to make sure that our flute and harp duo would be easily heard above the wind. We serenaded the guests with elegant classical music as they arrived and then we played for the processional. The bride came riding up in a fairy tale-like Cinderella carriage that was pulled by a white horse while we played “Beauty and the Beast”. The ceremony was incredibly romantic and there were many happy tears.

After the ceremony, we played for the cocktail hour indoors. We played a selection of contemporary and jazz style romantic songs that worked beautifully for flute and harp and complemented the theme of the wedding. The decorations inside were stunning and flowers were everywhere. The tall windows at the back of the building boasted a grand view of the chalk cliffs. I won’t forget this fairy tale wedding!

Prelude Music Sample:
Sheep May Safely Graze (Bach), Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee (Beethoven), Meditation from Thais (Massenet)

Wedding Ceremony Music Sample:
A Thousand Years (Christina Perri) ~ Bridesmaids and Groomsmen, Flower Girl
Beauty and the Beast ~ Bride
Tree Planting Ceremony ~ What a Wonderful World
I’m Yours (Jason Mraz) ~ Recessional

Cocktail Hour Music Sample:
Moon River, Someone to Watch Over Me (Gershwin), Over the Rainbow, The Ludlows from Legends of the Fall, The Swan (Saint Saens), Simple Gifts, Love is Here to Stay (Gershwin), Unforgettable (Sinatra), It Had to Be You (Sinatra)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Mount Princeton Hot Springs
Musicians: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens – Flute and Harp Duo
Photographer: Adore Photography
DJ: Elite Entertainment
Singer: John Redmon

Flute and Violin Duo Wedding Ceremony and Cocktail Music at The Sevens in Breckenridge

Photos courtesy of Bergreen Photography

It was a very chilly autumn day when my flute and violin duo traveled to the Sevens in Breckenridge to play music for a wedding ceremony and cocktail hour. Temperatures were hovering right around freezing and a light snow fell, sparkling in the sunny sky. The wedding ceremony was held outdoors and it was quick because of the chilly day. The guests enjoyed our music both indoors and outdoors because we played inside and amplified our music to the outside using my professional Bose L1 speakers.

This Georgia couple experienced the epic Colorado mountain ceremony that they dreamed of, graced with bright sunshine and a backdrop of snow capped mountain peaks. A beautiful Colorado mountain destination experience! After the ceremony, the guests moved indoors to warm up, and we entertained them during cocktails with a mix of classical and contemporary music. The bride’s favorite song is “River Flows in You” by Yiruma and I made a special arrangement of this song specifically for us to play on the flute and violin. We played part of it for the bride’s processional and then played it again at the end of the cocktail hour.

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Canon in D (Pachelbel): Seating of the parents, bridesmaids and groomsmen
River Flows in You (Yiruma): Bride’s Processional
Ode to Joy (Beethoven): Recessional

Samples from Prelude Music:
Trumpet Tune (Purcell), Minuet (Boccherini), Amazing Grace, Air from Suite No. 3 in D (Bach), Allegro Non Troppo (Bach)

Samples from Cocktail Hour Music:
Can’t Help Falling in Love (Elvis), Si Bheag, Si Mhor (Irish Air), Allegro from Spring (Vivaldi), Andante from string quartet Op. 29 (Schubert), Postcard to Henry Purcell from Pride and Prejudice, What a Wonderful World (Louis Armstrong), A Thousand Years (Christina Perri)

Wedding Planner: Love Leigh Weddings and Events
Venue: The Sevens
Photographer: Bergreen Photography
Ceremony and Cocktail Music: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens (Flute and Violin Duo)
Band: Narrow Gauge Band

Make your wedding come to life with the joyful music of my flute and violin duo.

Flute and Guitar Duo Wedding Ceremony and Cocktail Hour Music on the Vail Wedding Island

Photos courtesy of Kristopher Lindsay Photography

It was the first day of autumn when my guitarist and I headed down to Vail, Colorado to play for a wedding ceremony and cocktail hour. The ceremony was held at the Vail Wedding Island, and the cocktail hour was held on the covered patio of the Vail Golf Clubhouse. Fall decided to come swiftly on its first day with a rainy cold front, and our drive across the mountains was interspersed with heavy rain showers. We hoped that the weather wouldn’t stop the couple from having the beautiful wedding of their dreams.

When we arrived, the sun peered through the clouds just long enough for me to get several photos of the changing Aspen trees, glowing in their golden glory of peak season. We played prelude music on the wedding island and braved the weather, brightening up the gloomy and rainy day with our cheerful flute and guitar music. It did rain on us, but we each brought instruments that could take a little rain, so we kept playing.

The rain stopped just as the bride was about to walk down the aisle, but the wind gusted so strong that while she was walking, it tore her veil right from her head! She burst into a fit of laughter and it was contagious and soon everyone was laughing. We kept playing the bride’s walking song and after about a minute, she completed her walk down the aisle and was happily married. The sun shone brightly through the clouds just as the couple was presented as husband and wife.

After the ceremony, we moved to the covered and heated patio of the clubhouse, and we warmed up as we played upbeat contemporary and jazz tunes while the guests enjoyed hous d’ouvres and cocktails. I brought my top of the line Bose L1 sound system and our sound carried beautifully throughout the space. We even got a special music request and I Googled the sheet music on my cell phone. We played it, but music was very tiny!

Samples from Prelude Music:
Here Comes the Sun (Beatles), Can’t Help Falling in Love (Elvis), God Gave Me You (Blake Shelton), “Aylesford Gavotte” (Handel), Annie’s Song (John Denver), Gavotte from Sonata for flute in C Major (Handel)

Processional Music:
Groom ~ Amazed
Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, Ringbearer, Flower Girl ~ The Swan (Saint-Saens)
Bride ~ To Make You Feel My Love (Adele)
Recessional ~ Hornpipe Finale (Handel)

Samples from Cocktail Hour Music:
How High the Moon (Ella Fitzgerald), Unforgettable (Sinatra), You Are the Sunshine of My Life (Stevie Wonder), Satin Doll (Duke Ellington), Cheek to Cheek (Sinatra), Don’t Get Around Much Anymore (Duke Ellington)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Vail Wedding Island and Golf Club
Wedding Planner: Jessica Kate Productions
Photographer: Kristopher Lindsay Photography
Videographer: Doxica Productions
Live Ceremony and Cocktail Music: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens – Flute and Guitar Duo
DJ: DJ Guy

Flute and Guitar Duo at the Vail Wedding Deck

Photos courtesy of Two Elk Studios

Over Labor Day weekend, my flute and guitar duo played for a beautiful wedding ceremony on the Vail Wedding Deck. I believe that it was the most beautiful day that I’ve ever seen on the wedding deck with lots of sunshine and blue skies, but not too hot.

At the bride’s request, I chose a mix of classical and contemporary music for the prelude as the guests arrived. It was a little breezy so we played with amplification to make sure that our sound carried to everyone. We learned “Going to California” from Led Zeppelin for the bridesmaids and flower girl to walk down to. After the ceremony was over, we played while photos were being taken on the wedding deck.

client quote →

“Christen was truly amazing at my ceremony! Would absolutely hire her again!”
– Jena T., Bride

Sample from the Prelude Music:
Can’t Help Falling in Love (Elvis), Minuet (Boccherini), The Ludlows from Legends of the Fall, Sunshine on my Shoulders (John Denver), Reign of Love (Coldplay)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Going to California (Led Zeppelin) ~ Bridesmaids and Flower Girl
Wildflowers (Tom Petty) ~ Bride
Here Comes the Sun (Beatles) ~ Recessional

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Vail Wedding Deck
Musicians: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens – Flute and Guitar Duo
Photographer: Two Elk Studios Website, Two Elk Studios Facebook, Two Elk Studios Instagram

Hire my flute and guitar duo if you want a flexible playlist for YOUR ceremony!

Flute and Violin Duo Wedding Ceremony Music at the Vail Wedding Island

Photos in this post courtesy of Laura Murray Photography

The big day finally arrived! Ashley contacted me almost two years ago because she wanted to make sure that she reserved our flute and violin duo for her wedding day in Vail. Her special day finally arrived full of sunshine and mid-summer mountain beauty. The Gore Range provided a gorgeous backdrop to the wedding ceremony, which took place outdoors on the Vail Wedding Island. My violinist and I played contemporary prelude music as the guests enjoyed cocktails and socialized before the ceremony. The refreshing drinks kept everyone cool before the ceremony and it also provided lots of great photo opportunities.

The special part of the processional was our collaboration with the bride’s best friend and singer, Allie. I made a custom music arrangement of “I Will” by the Beatles and Allie sang along with our duo for the procession of the flower girl and ring bearer. It was the sweetest most meaningful moment, and the fact that the very young ring bearer didn’t want to walk down the aisle at all made it even more charming, and brought about some chuckles from everyone.

Congratulations Ashley and Ethan!

Samples from Prelude Music:
Blackbird (Beatles), All of Me (John Legend), In the Good Ol’ Summertime, A Thousand Years (Christina Perri), All You Need is Love (Beatles), Ode to Joy (Beethoven), Spring from the Four Seasons (Vivaldi)

Processional Music:
Can’t Help Falling in Love (Elvis) ~ Parents, Officiant, Groomsmen
Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring (Bach) ~ Bridesmaids
I Will (Beatles) ~ Flower Girl and Ringbearer
Canon in D ~ Bride

Hornpipe (Handel)

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Wedding Island at the Vail Golf and Nordic Clubhouse
Wedding Planner: Jill Chalfant of Snapdragon Celebrations
Wedding Ceremony Music: Flute and Violin Duo by Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens
Photographer: Laura Murray
Videographer: Sherri Innis of Love Story Films
Reception Location: Donovan Pavilion

Reserve our elegant flute and violin duo for your wedding day or event! Here are Music Samples >

Flute and Violin Duo Wedding Ceremony Music at Copper Mountain, Colorado

This summer my violinist and I traveled up to beautiful Copper Mountain in Colorado to play for an intimate wedding ceremony. This was my first time on a chair lift and I was ready and excited for the adventure, but I’m also afraid of heights! I managed to load myself and all of my equipment onto the chair, but the chair started to move forward before I was ready, and right away things began to fall off! After some assistance to re-load my things, and after a few tense moments while I got used to the height, I began to relax. I enjoyed the brilliant wildflowers scattered in the green grasses below and the scent of the majestic pines, a scent which I look forward to every time that I visit the mountains. I almost made it to the top when the wind gusted and a few of my things flew off the lift. Later, a wedding guest was so kind and drove his truck down and picked them up for me! I was so grateful.

The ride down was much smoother because I had learned some tricks in loading my things. They were also kind enough to stop the chair lift this time long enough for me to get situated. I also found a really helpful bar and footrest that I can bring down for added security. I do believe that I’m an expert at this now!

The wedding ceremony was wonderful. It took place at Solitude Station in the Nature Center Gazebo, which is a beautiful work of architecture in addition to being a perfect shelter. My flute and violin duo played elegant classical music and set the mood for the guests as they arrived. It felt like a small private concert. The ceremony was very short and full of humor and joy. At the bride’s request, we surprised the groom and all of the guests by playing the theme from Indiana Jones for the recessional. Everyone laughed as soon as they recognized the tune, and it was a really fun and unexpected moment.

From the Bride:
Christen at Flute and Strings was amazing to work with! It was so easy to get our music selections to her and she was quick to respond to any and all questions we had. The day of the wedding could not have gone smoother. Both musicians were punctual and flexible. We originally thought we had a larger ceremony space to work with, but ended up in a smaller venue. Both musicians adapted to the surroundings and didn’t miss a beat. My now husband really wanted the Indiana Jones theme music as our recessional and Christen worked with me to have that accomplished as a surprise for him. He was totally shocked and it sounded amazing! We could not thank Christen and her team enough for playing such a memorable ceremony. I would highly recommend!

Prelude Music:
Arrival of the Queen of Sheba from Solomon (Handel), Si Bheag Si Mhor (traditional Irish), Ode to Joy (Beethoven), Sheep May Safely Graze (Bach), Spring from the Four Seasons (Vivaldi), Trumpet Tune (Purcell), selections from Handel’s Fireworks and Water Music

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Ashokan Farewell (Jay Ungar and Molly Mason) ~ Mothers and Grandmothers
Rondeau ~ Bridesmaids and Groomsmen
A Thousand Years ~ Bride
Theme from Indiana Jones ~ Recessional
All You Need is Love ~ Postlude

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Solitude Station
Musicians: Flute and Strings by Christen Stephens – Flute and Violin Duo
Officiant: Gretchen Abernathy
Photographer: A friend of the family

Bring the joy of live flute and violin music to your wedding ceremony! Music Samples >

Flute and Cello Duo at Tapestry House in Laporte, Colorado

Photos courtesy of Ash Meier Photography

This spring, my flute and cello duo headed up to the Tapestry House in Laporte, Colorado to play for an elegant wedding ceremony. The charming Queen Anne style Tapestry House is a delightful wedding location. The lush green lawns are highlighted with flowers and graced with mature shade trees that are dripping with elegant twinkle lights. Everyone enjoyed the shade under the trees as our duo played a selection of classical prelude music to set an elegant mood. The bride and groom chose processional and recessional songs to complement their traditional wedding ceremony.

I first thought that the Tapestry House was a beautifully restored historical home, but upon reading the history of the home on the venue’s website, I found out that I was mistaken. The house is authentic to the time period but was more recently built. This is because the original house had deteriorated so badly that it was dismantled. The owners carefully salvaged wood, brick, stone, and architectural elements from the original house and incorporated them back into the new Queen Anne Revival Victorian that now occupies the original house site. Featuring six different colors of paint, the Tapestry House is called a “Painted Lady”, which is a term that refers to homes from the late Victorian era that featured three or more contrasting colors of paint. Although the home is new it is such a remarkable reproduction of a Queen Anne Revival style Victorian home that the Poudre Landmarks Foundation has included it twice, since 2002, on its historic homes tour.

Samples from the Prelude Music:
March in D (Bach), Spring (Vivaldi), Arioso (Bach), Menuet from the Notebook of Anna Magdalena Bach (Bach)

Wedding Ceremony Music:
Air from Overture #3 in D Major (Bach) ~ Groom, bridesmaids, ringbearer, flower girl
Canon in D (Pachelbel) ~ Bride
La Rejouissance (Handel) ~ Recessional
Hornpipe Finale (Handel) ~ Postlude

Wedding Ceremony Vendors:
Venue: Tapestry House
Photographer: Ash Meier
Musicians: Christen Stephens – Flute and Cello Duo

Add the elegance of the flute and cello to your wedding! Listen to Music Samples >

Nine Helpful Wedding Music Tips

Photo Courtesy of Kern Photo

Live music is the soundtrack for your wedding day and it beautifies and enhances the aural and visual atmosphere of your wedding. Chances are that hiring a musician isn’t something that you normally do and perhaps this is your first time. You may not know what questions to ask music professionals, or where to even begin. That’s why I wrote the following checklist as a great place to start.

Choose instruments that reflect your personality and style. What sound and visual appearance will help to bring your vision to life? Is your wedding more casual or is it classic? Is it romantic or a lively celebration? What instruments will sound best playing your song selections? To decide what ensemble best fits your event, share the answers to these questions with your music professional and he or she can help guide you. You can also listen to music samples of a variety of different ensembles online. I offer many different ensembles featuring the flute, strings, piano, harp, and guitar, and I also have music samples for each. One of my groups is sure to be a perfect fit for your style, and if for some reason I don’t have what you’re looking for, I will gladly make recommendations for other musicians using my connections in the music world.

Number of Musicians:
Consider the size of your space and the number of guests that will be attending your ceremony. In general, plan to have at minimum one musician per 50 guests. It’s also a good idea to hire more musicians, such as a quartet, for large outdoor spaces. A duo that includes an amplified harp, guitar or piano can also fill a space with sound as effectively as a quartet. More isn’t necessarily better however. For small weddings in an intimate space, an acoustic soloist or duo is a great choice. Also consider your budget. The number of musicians that you hire is usually the single most important factor in determining the price of your live music.

Repertoire and Song Selection:
Can your music professional play the songs and styles of music that you want? Do you want to honor any family or cultural traditions with your wedding music? If a song that you want to have played is not included in the musician’s repertoire, ask them if they take special requests and if there will be an arranging fee. Each of my ensembles has an extensive repertoire and I’m also a professional music arranger which means that I regularly make special music arrangements for my clients at a reasonable price.

Most instruments are very resonant and their sound carries quite well, even in outdoor spaces. For larger events or in settings with lots of ambient noise, make sure that your music professional can provide quality amplification if needed. Some wedding venues don’t allow amplification, so don’t rely on having it until you’ve inquired first. I have both a battery powered amplification system and a high quality plug-in amplification system that I regularly use for our performances when needed.

Hire Experienced Music Professionals:
Your music professional should be an experienced wedding musician who is able to guide you through the music selection process. They should know what questions to ask be and able to foresee potential problems so that the music on your wedding day will run smoothly, and they should always present themselves professionally. Make sure that they are well trained, regularly performing musicians who are able to give you confidence in their musical abilities. I have over twenty years of experience performing music for weddings and I’m also lucky to love running the other aspects of my business as well.

Know What Your Musicians Expect
Ask your music professional what their policy is for environmental conditions including rain, temperature extremes and requirements for shade. Often the venue or musicians will provide these items, sometimes for an additional cost. Ask in advance what they expect you to provide for them at the performance. Some instruments are extremely vulnerable to weather and sunlight and others are more hardy. I will play solo flute in adverse weather conditions but I don’t ask string players to join me! Most likely your guests won’t want to be outside if the weather conditions are bad either. I request natural or tent shade for stringed instruments (violin, viola, cello) during hot weather and sometimes, one armless chair for each musician.

Extra Costs:
When you’re hiring musicians to play for your wedding, be aware that there may be extra costs in addition to their basic fee. Make sure that you know what services are included in their basic fee, and what services are available at an extra cost. Extra costs can include fees for travel, musician tent rental, amplification, special music arrangements, additional microphones, and moving equipment between the ceremony and cocktail locations. I don’t like surprises and I’m sure that you don’t either, so my music quotes includes a list of the services that your quoted price covers, and also a list of optional add-ons and how much each one costs.

Ask your music professional if they will meet with you so that you can talk about your wedding with them in person and hear them play. I provide a complimentary consultation either before or after you book. Or, if you don’t have time to have a consultation, you can use my Wedding Music Planner.

It is important to work with musicians who provides a contract so that expectations for both the musicians and client are clearly defined in advance. A contract also shows that the musicians are professional, reliable, regularly performing musicians. I always provide a contract so that expectations on both sides are clear.

Do you have specific questions about your wedding music? Are you looking for a wedding musician? I’d love to hear from you!

Contact Me >

Flute and Guitar Wedding Ceremony Music at Washington Park in Denver, Colorado

It was an unusually hot day for early June, reaching 95 degrees, when my flute and guitar duo headed down to Washington Park to play for a contemporary wedding ceremony. It was the second marriage for both the bride and the groom and because of this, the couple was able to truly have the chance to express themselves and have fun without the stress of first time wedding planning. This bride and groom were really great to work with and they had some fun ideas for the music, including having us play “Final Countdown” just before their ceremony was about to begin. They chose all contemporary songs and I loved how they described that the flute would take the place of the vocals and the guitar would provide the background.

Despite the heat, the bride wore a beautiful ball gown and everyone was dressed in their summer best. Our duo played the fun contemporary prelude music that the couple had selected, and our music drew the guests down to the ceremony site. We played some more contemporary music selections after the ceremony to send everyone happily away to the next phase of the wedding.

From the Groom:
“Christen was just awesome, from planning our music through wedding day! Her repertoire is basically limitless from anything traditional to our wedding, nothing but contemporary pop. Check out her very long playlist for whatever instrument accompaniment you desire. Thank you, Christen, again for an amazing job at our wedding.”

Samples from Prelude Music:
A Groovy Kind of Love (Phil Collins), Wonderful Tonight (Eric Clapton), Here Comes the Sun (Beatles), Nights in White Satin (Moody Blues), Time After Time (Cyndi Lauper), The Final Countdown (Europe)

Processional Music
On the Turning Away ~ Groom, groom’s son, and groom’s daughter
Earth Angel ~ Bride
Twist and Shout ~ Recessional

They Way You Look Tonight (Sinatra), All My Loving (Beatles)

Add contemporary, jazz or classical music to your wedding ceremony or event with my versatile flute and guitar duo.