Have you ever sat waiting for the bride to walk down the aisle, ears straining for the first bars of “Here Comes the Bride” or the “Wedding March,” and wondered how long the tradition of playing these songs has been around?
“Here Comes The Bride,” or its official name, the “Bridal Chorus,” is part of an 1850 opera called Lohengrin written by Richard Wagner. The irony is that in the opera, the “Bridal Chorus” is sung as the bride and groom enter the bridal chamber and the wedding party prepares them for their first night together. Not to mention the whole story of two star-crossed lovers ends in tragedy rather than in a happily ever after.
Usually, the “Bridal Chorus” is played without singing at modern weddings, but you can see the original lyrics and learn more about some of the controversy surrounding it here.
The “Wedding March,” composed by Felix Mendelssohn, was created in 1842 to accompany Shakespeare’s famous A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Mendelssohn’s wedding march was first played in a wedding in 1847, but it was Victoria, the Princess Royal and Queen Victoria’s daughter, who made it the song to play during a wedding ceremony by having it accompany her own wedding in 1858.