*Update: So I have received many many emails from people looking for advice on how to emcee their wedding events. So after sharing with so many people, I have decided to compile my decade of emcee experience into an ebook, which you can find out more here.
So you have been approached by your friend or family member to be their wedding emcee. You feel honoured that they would approach you, and you start to think if you are up to the task. Being an emcee for your close friend or relative’s wedding is a great honor, one that is not to be taken lightly.
The wedding emcee’s job is to make sure the evening proceeds as smoothly as possible, taking the pressure off the happy couple and allowing them to forget about the nitty gritty of the wedding event and focus on enjoying themselves.
A wedding represents is often the most important milestone in a couple’s life, and it is the wedding emcee’s job to make sure everything runs well. A good wedding emcee understands the importance of balancing the formalities and injecting some fun. Too much of either makes for a cringe-worthy wedding experience for everyone.
So if you are tasked to be an emcee for a wedding, here are some tips that might help you be a good and memorable wedding emcee:
1. Know and understand the Wedding Couple
With any exam, you first have to do your homework. Likewise, being a wedding emcee is no different. Before the big day, sit down with the couple to understand the couple.
Both sides have to feel comfortable with each other, and more importantly you have to understand the couple’s style. With that, you will be able to suit their style when you host the big night.
Some questions you might want to ask the couple:
- What is the “tone” of the wedding that they would like?
- What is the flow of the night’s proceedings?
- Who will be speaking and the order of speakers?
- Who would they like to invite up on stage for the Yum Seng?
- Is there any taboo subject that the emcee should avoid?
2. Know the plan for the wedding event
Different wedding couples might want different programs for their banquet. Ensure that you understand the plan and the flow as to how the couple wants it.
If unsure, always clarify before the big day. Usually there will be speeches, cake cutting, champagne pouring, yum seng and sometimes even games or audience interactions.
While there will be a wedding emcee script, there will also be moments where the emcee can be spontaneous and crack jokes to keep the ceremony light hearted.
But it is still important to have a plan. The night belongs to the bride and groom, and it’s the emcee’s job to make them look good without any problems.
3. Run through the wedding emcee script
Once you have in place point 1 & 2 as above, it is time to run through the emcee script.
Ensure that you are aware of the flow of words to deliver and if there are any words that you have difficulty pronouncing, change the word(s) or word flow in other for you to ensure a smooth delivery.
The wedding emcee script will have to suit your needs and not the other way around.
If you do not have a wedding emcee script, you can reach out to the hotel venues. The hotels will usually provide the emcee script, but if not feel free to reach out to me with regards to the wedding emcee script.
4. Research on important names
Ensure that you know the important names and the pronunciation. It is important that you do mispronounce the names of the parents of the bride and groom.
Also research on any other important people attending the wedding banquet that you might have to highlight.
Remember, being well planned and well researched lets you execute your duties as a wedding emcee with ease.
5. Coordinate with the wedding vendors
As with any event, the timing has to be impeccable. Have a meeting with the wedding coordinator either before or on the actual day to know each other’s cues.
For example, if the champagne pouring is after the speech, you as the wedding emcee will immediately have to invite the couple after their speech to the toasting table, and the coordinator will have to ensure the champagne tower is set up.
However there might not be a wedding coordinator so you will have to be on top of things, because if things do not go as planned, people will look to the emcee for cue.
Ensure you touch base with all that are involved, which includes the DJ, Banquet Manager, Photographer, Videographer, performance band etc, if any.
Find out their roles and any special moments which you should know about.
6. Test the microphone(s) before the event
Always do a sound check before the event starts so that you can adjust your voice EQ (to ensure you sound good), ensure the sound system is working good as well as to hear the acoustics of the room.
Practise holding the mic at a correct distance so when the actual event starts you would be audible for everyone.
Arriving early will also give you the wedding emcee time to settle down and observe the crowd to help you adapt your style for hosting the wedding later.
7. Introducing the speakers with a special touch
Speak to each speaker beforehand and find them from them if there are any special memories of them and the couple.
That way, the emcee is able to introduce the speaker and those special memories which adds a great touch.
Weddings are all about emotions and these special moments will help make you a more memorable wedding emcee.
8. Step into the shoes of your audience
If you want to be remembered as a good wedding emcee, always be focusing on the audience.
Often times when people attend a wedding, they might not know the couple or the background of the couple. So what you can do is to give nuggets of information along the way about the couple and you can even crack jokes about how they met or how to first started dating.
Perhaps the demographics of the audience give you an opportunity for a special moment, and if so make it count (Do run it by the couple if you have to).
9. Relax and be confident
This is probably the most important point, because in order to deliver smoothly, you have to be relaxed.
If you’re too nervous you’ll sound robotic, so if you need to, practise in front of friends before the big day.
Remember to just relax and enjoy your moment in the spotlight to ensure the wedding goes smoothly and according to plan.
So there you have it, 9 tips on how to be a good and memorable wedding emcee! The most important thing is to have fun on stage, and I hope you enjoy your journey as the Wedding Emcee/Master of Ceremony.
Relax, smile and enjoy yourself! The more you embrace your role with joy and excitement, the more fun you’ll have and the more fun your audience will have. If you are hosting another type of event, you can read here on the 21 tips on how to be a good and effective emcee. If you are going to have a presentation, here are 25 effective tips on public speaking.
Have fun and emcee on, and rock that wedding!