Choosing instruments for your string duo, trio, or quartet can be confusing for the non-musician. How can you make a selection if you don’t know the difference between a violin and a viola. They even look alike!
When I play duos, my personal favorite is violin and cello. I think they sound great together and make the best choice. The violin plays the melody and the cello plays the bass part. For trios, I like either two violins plus cello or violin, viola, and cello. The 2nd violin or viola generally play the same part even though the viola has a deeper, more mellow tone than the violin. A string quartet always has 2 violins, viola, and cello so there’s no need to choose between violin and viola!
Of course there’s no rule that says you have to only use string instruments. Flute is a nice alternative and can replace the violin in any size group. We sometimes play with piano/keyboard. Violin, cello and piano always sound good together. Our pianist has his own keyboard and as long as there’s an electrical outlet he can play outdoors with the strings.
You can listen to samples of each grouping on our repertoire page.
Happy wedding ensemble planning!