Your Book Live Music guide to hiring Classical Music.
Which string quartet should I book, where can I find a wedding
harpist, how much does an opera singer cost and our complete guide
on how to hire
classical music for your event.
Which classical music should I book?
Perfect for the wedding ceremony, during the drinks reception or
over dinner, classical music is still one of the most popular music
genres to have for any special event. It's sophisticated elegance
adds a note of formality to the occasion whilst maintaining a warm
musical backdrop that exudes class. Here are a few pointers to what
is best for each event from our portfolio:
Classical String Quartets:
Usually comprising of 2 x violins, a cello and a viola, a string
quartet plays much more than classical music. Today ensembles perform
a huge range of music from light classical to jazz, showtunes and
even some modern chart hits. You may even have been at a reception
and heard a version of Wonderwall by Oasis pierce through the chitter
chatter. It's elevating, fun and really sets the tone for your event.
A string quartet is ideal entertainment for the wedding service,
ceremony, drinks reception and during dinner.
When you hire a classical string quartet with Book Live, you'll
have plenty of input into the music performed on the day or you
can simply leave it to them - string quartets usually know what
is well received.
One of our most popular classical string quartets is:
Viva Strings: www.booklive.co.uk/band/viva-strings
A harpist is such a stylish addition to an event. The long lines
of the harp and light, music is such a subtle and sophisticated
way to entertain your guests. The repertoire is similar to a string
ensemble but the harp is quieter and may demand special focus for
larger events. If you are expecting more than 100 guests in a large
venue we would recommend adding a PA [sound equipment] to amplify
the harp or it may not be heard so well. A harpist is ideal entertainment
for the wedding service, ceremony and possibly the drinks reception
and during dinner with amplification. One of our most popular harpists
A classical duo may be perfect for smaller venues and budgets.
They perform beautiful music and are available in many different
A classical duo is ideal entertainment for the wedding service,
ceremony, drinks reception and during dinner with amplification.
One of our most popular classical duos is:
Gemini Flute & Cello Duo: www.booklive.co.uk/band/gemini-flute-and-cello-duo
With the popularity of Katherine Jenkins, Alfie Bowes, Andrea Bocelli
and others, an opera singer is a stunning option which most people
use as a highlight to a very special occasion. Many people also
like to have an opera singer for their wedding service as a powerful
and romantic centrepiece to their special day. An opera singer can
sing without any sound equipment although we recommend having one
so they can play backing music for a truly memorable experience.
An opera singer is ideal entertainment for the wedding service,
ceremony or as a feature during dinner. One of our most popular
London Soprano: www.booklive.co.uk/band/london-soprano
How much does classical music cost to hire?
Fees vary considerably although classical music is still one of
the best value musical options for weddings and celebrations. Book
Live has negotiated the best fees for all of the artists we represent.
Opera singers cost from £400 for up to 5 songs, harpists start from
£250, string quartets pricing starts from £500 and these will both
perform 2 hours of music with short breaks.
- £250-£350: This
price range includes harpists, classical solos and duos for a
typical performance of up to 2 hours of music. Sound equipment
or travel expenses is not included. Examples include:
Flute & Cello Duo
London based elegant flute and cello duo performing beautiful
music for weddings, parties and corporate entertainment....
Magdalena is an experienced harpist and provides beautiful harp
music available to hire in London, the South coast and throughout
the UK.... more
- £350-£600: This
price range covers most classical ensembles in the UK. These fees
have historically been the usual cost to hire a string trio or
classical string quartet for up to hours. Examples include:
Cheshire based. Bright and sophisticated ensemble available
as a duo, trio or quartet for weddings, receptions and events.
Highly experienced string ensemble available to hire as a duo,
trio or classical string quartet. Perfect for the wedding service,
the wedding breakfast as well as private and corporate events.....
What is included in the price?
The fee covers a typical performance for 2 or 3 x sets depending
on your requirements. It also covers all their insurances. String
ensembles usually only need around 15 minutes to set up prior to
performance. Expect to pay extra for an early set up / a late finish,
significant travel expenses plus any additional sets or musicians.
All enquiries made with Book Live will include the total cost for
the performance as long as we know all the information about your
What does a classical music artist need to perform?
The requirements are usually much simpler than a band that needs
- A suitable performance area including equipment.
An opera singer or harpist will need approximately 2 x 2metres
and a string quartet will need approx 4 x 3metres
- Around 15-20 minutes to set up.
- Inclusion in any nibbles or food provided for
your guests for each performer and soft drinks. You will get the
best out of the artist if you look after them whilst they are
- A changing / chill-out area where they can also
leave their valuables.
- Parking spaces to be provided or paid for.
Can I go and see the artist before I book?
It is very rare for our classical music artists to have any public
performances due to the nature of the music. Most bookings are made
by private clients for weddings, celebrations or for corporate entertainment.
We are unable to arrange for any prospective client to go and see
a band at someone else's wedding or private party.
How does payment work?
A deposit is due at the point of booking. Book Live can accept
payments by Visa, Switch, Mastercard, Cheque or Bank Transfer.
Balance payments should be settled directly with the band leader
either 2 weeks in advance or in cash at the event.
Why should I hire a classical artist with Book Live?
Book Live is one of the UK's most respected entertainment agents
supplying superb live bands and singers for weddings, parties and
corporate events. We have worked with customers at the highest level
(read more) and we
offer a completely impartial service. Most agencies have a house
band that they are trying to sell and the rest of their portfolio
may not get a look-in. We have pre-vetted all of our artists and
offer a Peace of mind guarantee:
- All of our artists have been selected for their
professionalism, musicianship and performance, so we know that
every event will be special for all the right reasons. The Book
Live team regularly go and see our acts perform so we know what
clients can expect before they book.
- Public Liability Insurance and PAT certification
can be provided on request for any performances.
- All bookings are secured by contract with both
the client and the artist for complete peace of mind.
- We provide a 24/7 emergency number should you
need to talk with us.
- Our artists all have regular deputy musicians
so an event will never be compromised. In addition, Book Live
can provide replacements for our singers in the unlikely event
that something unexpected happens [subject to availability].
What else do I need to know?
We hope we have covered all bases. If you have a question then
please get in touch and we will do our best to answer it.
Additional articles from the Book Live blog:
You'll find a full list of all of our Classical Music Acts here: