Search thousands of topics on

BROWSE ALL TOPICS >> appliances babies & children  cars  consumer electronics health & personal care home & garden personal finance  pets  schools small business weddings
CostHelper > Weddings  > Organist

Organist Cost

How Much Does an Organist Cost?

low costLow: Usually Start $100-$150average costOrganists Average: $175-$250high costHigh: Organists Can Run $300+
post E-mail post Post   Comments (1)

A wedding organist is a suitable choice for those who enjoy hearing hymns and classical arrangements before, during and after the ceremony. In general, churches with a working organ have a suggested organist you may hire for an event. However, some organists also work on a freelance basis and will play at various locations for an agreed-upon fee. Because organs are not easily moved, musicians should be provided with the instrument on-site.

Typical costs:

  • The most common fee for a wedding organist is in the $175 to $250 range. Starting at $100 on the low end, an organist may charge $300 or more for his or her services.
  • Some churches include an organist as part of a wedding package in their ceremony fees. Church packages including an organist cost around $1,000.
Related articles: Live Ceremony Music, Wedding Music Band, Wedding DJ

What should be included:
  • The organist should attend a scheduled wedding rehearsal. If the contract does not include rehearsing the day before with the organist, a CD of the selected music should be provided.
  • The organist's fee should include a consultation to select music.
  • A wedding organist should arrive at his or her scheduled time the on the wedding day. He or she will agree to play music selections before, during and after the ceremony. The entire musical set typically lasts no longer than one hour, unless the wedding couple has an especially long ceremony planned or a lengthy recessional, dismissing each row of guests.
Additional costs:
  • A non-refundable deposit may be required to secure your organist for the wedding day.
  • Expect to pay $25 to $50 per hour for additional rehearsals with the organist if rehearsals are not included in the overall wedding fee.
  • If you plan to include a vocalist, musician or choir requiring the use of the organist for rehearsals, expect to pay $50 to $150 per rehearsal.
Shopping for an organist:
  • Get quotes from several organists before making a selection. If there is a musician you prefer to work with, ask if he or she is able to match a competitor's fee. Don't haggle on the price, however, knowing that an organ is a complicated instrument that takes musicians years to master.
  • If you have specific music in mind, make sure the organist can play the pieces selected at the consultation to reflect the mood of the ceremony. Traditional wedding ceremony songs are listed at Music for Church Choirs[1] . When making song selections, the organist should play the songs for you or let you listen to a recording.
  • A helpful article at Songs for Your Ceremony[2] gives a break down of the music needed for a wedding service and where each song can be placed.
  • GigSalad[3] and Gigmasters[4] offer a searchable database of organists by state. When hiring from their listings, Gigmasters recommends reading client feedback and reading the contract carefully before making a decision. Organists should be booked 3 to 6 months in advance.
post E-mail post Post   Comments (1)
CostHelper News

7 Lesser-Known Discounts for the 50+ Crowd
As they age, members of the Baby Boomer generation don't like to admit that they're senior citizens, but they love getting discounts. It's kind of a quandary, because some of the best deals available are reduced prices for older folks. || Posted October 21 2013

Our Top 10 Favorite Secret Menu Items
Don't believe everything you read. Those menus posted at your favorite fast food spot or coffee stand are not the be all and end all of their offerings. || Posted October 25 2013

‣ All CostHelper Blog Posts

What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
Organist Bench Fee
Amount: $250.00
Posted by: John M. Thomas in Newark, NJ.Posted: April 3rd, 2011 07:04PM
As a full-time organist for a church and a member of the Amerian Guild of Organists (union - please refer to official website for precise inforation: ) it is important to note that churches often have contracts with their own organist. Typically such arrangements entail that the church's organist is compensated at their regular rate if you hire another organist or opt not to have the organ used. Also the church's organist, music director or pastor will have the last word on what music or musicians may be approved in any given church and some will not allow another organist to be hired under any circumstance. Lastly the church's organist or music director may impose a contractor's fee (i believe an additional $40 per person is normal) for booking and coordinating with any other musicians for the client. P.S. Some churches also have similar arrangments with singers.
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam


Comment On Your Experience With an Organist
Subject:  *
Amount Spent:  *
Purchased:  Year: 
City:  * State:  *
Information about you:
Email:  * Email addresses are not displayed.
Name:  This is the name we'll display with your post.
me on this computer
*=required field.

External Resources:
More Weddings Topics
Check Out All Costs for Weddings How Much Does an Open Bar Cost? How Much Do Wedding Flowers Cost? How Much Does a Groom's Suit or Tuxedo Cost?

Search Thousands of Topics on


Today's Featured Cost Articles

About CostHelper
CostHelper is based in Silicon Valley and provides consumers with unbiased price information about thousands of goods and services. Our writers are experienced journalists who adhere to our strict editorial ethics policy.

CostHelper Community
Angiogram of heart
Paid: 55150.00
Had this procedure done to check heart due to abnormal stress test. Did not need any stents or any other procedure as everything was negative... [more]
-Pamela Garrett
Angiogram Cost
HELP: asbestos in furance - many questions
Paid: 0.00
I am renting out my home in Grand Rapids, MI and have received a notice from the city that the home must be inspected... [more]
Asbestos Removal Cost
Paid: 45.00
The clamp was annoying so it took away concentration of the tiny sting of the needle. I had just turned 15 at the the time and I've had it for almost a year and it has healed fast and never given me any trouble... [more]
Body Piercings Cost
Paid: 3009.00
Single family home... [more]
Ductwork Cost
2 half shafts replaced
Paid: 140.00
Bought the axles myself on ebay for 40 each, then had a mobile mechanic come to my house to do the work. It is not a hard job, but has a couple tricky parts for a subaru. Easier for a honda or toyota... [more]
-Subbie Giy
Replacing a CV Boot Cost
Even with insurance looking at going broke
Paid: 55000.00
Recently on a camping vacation my 11 year old became very sick. Took him to the closest hospital. Found out he is type 1 diabetic. Was very sick and had to be flown from Rock Springs WY, to Salt Lake City, UT. 185 mile on the ground... [more]
-Broke and confused.
Air Ambulance Cost