Wedding Ceremony & Reception Music Discussions

How much to pay the ceremony pianist...?

We are having a musician from the church play during our ceremony.  I asked about the fee, and he asked that we make a donation to his next mission trip through the church, whatever we feel moved to contribute.  I have NO idea what is expected!  Any help or advice you can offer, ladies??  Thank you!

Re: How much to pay the ceremony pianist...?

  • edited December 2011
    I have played for several ceremonies. In the past, I was always given a $25 gift certificate and nice bracelet or necklace.
    In your case, since it'll be a donation, I would say $50-$100, depending on how far the pianist has to drive. Fuel prices aren't cheap :(
    Good luck! I am still trying to nail down my musicians for my wedding!
  • klmeyer4klmeyer4 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    As a fellow pianist (I've played my fair share of weddings), how much you pay the pianist really depends on how many songs you are having them play. Look at it this way...very few pianists can just show up to the wedding, sit down and begin playing the music without ever having practiced them first. Just know that your wedding pianist has had to prepare by practicing and making sure all of the music is accounted for. 

    If you have an hour's worth of music picked out, then you should pay a little more than if you have 30 minutes worth of music. I would say anywhere from $75 - $125 depending the amount of music you have. I'm getting married in two weeks and I will be paying my ceremony pianist probably somwhere in the area of $125 or so...but I have requested several difficult pieces of music and I feel for her!  Smile

    With that said, the best thing to do would be to figure out a price that you feel is fair and one that is based on the amount of music you  have requested! Hope this helps!
  • naomikbnaomikb member
    2500 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    We are paying our organist $200 (his set fee).  We also are making a ~$500 donation to the church since there is no set church fee.
  • edited December 2011
    $100-300 depending on how professional your pianist is.
  • Nicolee11Nicolee11 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thank you for the advice ladies!
  • edited December 2011
    Here in Boston,. the going rate is at least $100 per hour. Remember that even if your pianist isn't playing for a full 60 minutes, he or she might have to spend at least this much time at your venue. If you are hiring a professional, years of preparation went into his or her training and most likely, your pianist had to rehearse your music beforehand.

    Daniel Broniatowski, D.M.A.
    Elegant Music for All Occasions
  • edited February 2012
    I had my mother in law to be ask our church pianist if she would play at our wedding.  I got the price of $300 in an email from MIL without any explanation of why so much.  I'll be calling the pianist tomorrow to discuss the pricing.
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