How much should you be willing to part with for a piano player on your wedding day?
The answer to this varies somewhat from player to player and depends on a number of factors. Some of these relate to whether or not you’re hiring your pianist for your wedding ceremony, drinks reception and/or meal, how far he has to travel to, how experienced he is, time of year and so on.
I will attempt to give an answer that covers all bases on your search for a wedding musician and which gives you a ballpark figure on your hunt.
I should first begin by clarifying that I do not actually advertise prices for my own services here on my website, mainly because I like to find out where and when your wedding is taking place first before committing to a quote.
In Ireland, as of 2020, it holds that the price of a single musical service (ceremony only / reception only) rests in the region of €270 on average. Combined package deals should see a discount of around 1.5 times this price applied to your quote.
It should be noted that this is not prescriptive, but rather based on anecdotal evidence from my peers in the field as well as on their advertising data.
So what’s the logic behind the figures?
A professional level piano player will have spent years learning his craft. When you hear a piano player performing music which truly delights and which he makes look easy, you must realise that thousands (yes you’ve read that correctly) of hours have been poured into learning scales, arpeggios, theory, pieces, grades, lessons, standards, workshops and raw practice.
It’s likely that a good performer never actually stops practicing and is in fact constantly going back to the drawing board. This all to say that your pianist spends most of his working life honing his skill and will deserve to be adequately compensated for it.
There’s obviously the benefit to you as a client hiring a professional musician. Firstly, you’ve probably arrived at the conclusion that live music is infinitely better than recorded music, particularly on a day that celebrates coming together. A professional pianist has the responsibility of making your ceremony and reception beautiful and memorable. He will be skilled in judging the perfect moment to begin and end the music in the realtime of your ceremony, accept requests during your reception and make sure that all of the logistics run smoothly.
A well executed service looks easy and sounds beautiful to the you and your guests and so it should.
You can probably expect to pay a little more than the ballpark for a truly talented and well reputed pianist.
How can I tell if my pianist is worth his asking price or not?
This largely comes down to your own intuition about how praiseworthy his testimonials are, how good his music sounds via video/audio and to how professional and friendly he is in dealing with you from the start.
It’s also no harm to double check with him that this is his best offering and, naturally, you should shop around before making your final decision.