Wedding Music

The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba

A thrilling entrance piece for the bride - fast and exciting.

Full Title The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba from Solomon by George Frideric Handel (1685-1759)

Notes This thrilling, fast piece is the Act III Sinfonia from the oratorio Solomon, premiered in London in 1749, biblical stories of wise king Solomon. The Queen of Sheba - an exotic and mysterious woman of power - is immortalised in the world's great religious works, among them the Hebrew Bible and the Muslim Koran. She also appears in Turkish and Persian painting, in Kabbalistic treatises, and in medieval Christian mystical works, where she is viewed as the embodiment of Divine Wisdom and a foreteller of the cult of the Holy Cross. In Africa and Arabia her tale is still told to this day and, indeed, her tale has been told and retold in many lands for nearly 3,000 years.

The sources and history of the legend, however, are elusive. Hollywood, too, has fallen under her spell, releasing its own polished epic version of her story in the glossy Solomon and Sheba of 1959.

Duration full length approx 3 minutes. With any of the bridal entrance marches, any good organist will cut the piece to length, so that the bride is not standing for an unnecessarily long time at the front of the church.

Performers required

  • Organ alone
  • Piano alone

Source of printed music Organ arrangement by Colin Hand - in the book The Essential Book Of Wedding Music, published by Kevin Mayhew, 1995.

© Fergus Black

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