Based in Northern Ireland, ‘Haste to the Wedding’ is a five-piece band specializing in live traditional ceili dance music and song for wedding parties and other functions. The word Ceili, or Ceilidh in Scots Gaelic, means to gather together for a night of dancing, singing, and storytelling. It is usually an informal occasion and Haste to the Wedding make every effort to ensure that even if you don’t get the dances exactly right, at least you’ll end the evening with a few stories of your own!
Most of the weddings and other parties Haste to the Wedding perform at are comprised of inexperienced dancers, but the band includes a professional caller who will be on the floor all evening. He will encourage those not familiar with the steps to join in and help keep the night rolling along on the right track.
And that is what Haste to The Wedding is all about – providing plenty of good music and fun for you and your family and friends so that everyone will remember a great night’s craic.
As well as an evening Ceilidh we also can provide a DJ.
Or Traditional musicians for an afternoon session.
Our diary fills up quickly and for the most sought after dates, for example, Saturdays from May through to September, we regularly take bookings up to two years in advance. We aim to keep the booking process as simple as possible and only require our clients to follow a few easy steps which are explained below.
1. Get Quote
To obtain a quote please email firstname.lastname@example.org and remember to include details of your date and venue. All inquiries will receive a reply within 12 hours. (NB. Check your spam folder if this does not happen.) The most common package is a two-hour ceilidh, which will be paced by our caller for your particular crowd, and includes a variety of fun dances, waltz sets, and songs. We can, however, perform for longer and regularly play three-hour ceilidhs when requested. We can also provide a DJ for after the ceilidh or indeed harpists, pipers or session musicians to play at your ceremony, or before or during your meal.
2. Pay deposit
Once we have agreed on a package, a £100 deposit can be paid online by following the link below (if you prefer to pay by bank transfer, contact us for bank details)
3. Complete booking form
Once a package has been agreed we request you complete a booking form. (Do not worry about start times or requests as these will be confirmed nearer to the date of your wedding/event). Download Booking Form to e-mail or please complete details on the form below and submit. A copy will be sent to your e-mail as well for your records.
After the booking goes into our diary we guarantee to honor that commitment in full. You will receive, by return, a copy of your booking form together with a confirmation and some advice about timings. Later, you will be requested to supply details of start times and any recorded tracks you may want to be played for first dances, for example. (Payment can be made in advance by bank transfer or, by cash on the evening of the event.)
Tel: 07784 301194
We often get booked to start at 8pm or earlier. In our experience these rarely start on time. Please consider time taken for photographs, speeches and the staff clearing the room. Most weddings run late! Chat to the venue manager about times, and contingencies should things run late e.g. will they push the buffet back? some are flexible, some are not.
The most common option is for us to play your favorite CD track over our PA system. We can download this in advance to save you carrying it around on your big day. We often play two tracks if the bride wants to do another dance with her dad or wishes the bridal party to join in. Our caller will announce you onto the floor, and when finished will go straight into the Ceilidh (often asking you to be the top couple in the 1st set). Alternatively, we can play a waltz or a Gay Gordons set, or go straight into the Ceilidh without a specific 1st dance. Whichever you choose our caller will ensure that all elements fit together with no awkward gaps or pauses.
There are five members of Haste to the Wedding (see meet the band). Very occasionally one of us can’t make a gig but we have a great circle of musician friends that we play sessions with regularly who are always willing to take to the stage and know all the sets we play.
Haste to the Wedding have been performing together for over 19 years and intend to do so for many years to come. At any one time we have as many as 70 bookings – up to two years in advance. We have played at hundreds of weddings, formals and other events and we’ve never been late or missed a gig – EVER!
We specialise in traditional Scottish & Irish ceili dance music – jigs & reels. We also perform some traditional folk songs and will on occasion play specific requests. We can also play recorded tracks of your choice for your 1st dance or during breaks for example.
Through many years of practice and familiarity with many wedding venues throughout Ireland, we can set up and be ready to go in about 20-30 minutes. We always aim to be at your event at least one hour before start time. Normally we don’t take a break during a standard gig, however for longer performances, we may take a short breather to allow for a buffet for example, during which we can play background music.
As most of the gigs we play are weddings and other private functions we tend to discourage requests to see us live. If you really feel you must then we request that you are very discreet and remember that we will be focused on the job in hand and will NOT be able to discuss your needs at someone else’s function. You can hear us on our website which includes some of our most popular dance sets. (Please also see our reviews & see our video clips)
We have played all over Ireland, England & Scotland and even as far as the Middle East. We have a set fee for standard gigs in the greater Belfast/Co.Antrim area. Beyond this travel and other expenses will be additional. Please contact us directly for an accurate quote specific to you.
To confirm a booking we require a non-refundable £100 deposit. The balance is payable in advance by money transfer (details will be be provided on booking).
We can include this in a booking. The DJs who work with us are flexible and will include your requests within their sets. Please bear in mind our DJs are very experienced and it is often better to allow them to exercise their own judgment to ensure the dance floor is kept full all night.
Most venues have some sort of stage or platform which is welcome but not essential. Please remember if you’re having a buffet to check with the hotel/caterers and make sure they are flexible should your timings go awry. It’s much better for you to have your buffet during a natural break in the evening’s entertainment, I.E. between the ceilidh and the disco, for example. Regarding the band, we have never been known to refuse a tasty buffet, but it’s certainly not a requirement.