Once the bride and groom decide they want a wedding speeches and toasts event at their reception - which is quite common - the next task is to plan it.
Planning this event takes some thought since the bride and groom don't want to choose people who are reluctant to speak in public.
As well, some people - the Father of the Bride and the Best Man in particular - are expected to pay tribute to the newlyweds.
Planning the wedding speeches event involves four main areas including...
1. When To Schedule The Speeches and Toasts
This can include before dinner, after dinner, after the Grand Entrance, or even after the cake cutting.
2. Who To Invite To Give A Speech or Toast
The wedding planners should decide whether they want to include those who are traditionally expected to speak, create their own list, or have open speeches and toasts. "Open" speeches are much more time-consuming and while the remarks can be spontaneous, they can also be embarrassing.
3. How Long The Event Will Run
Each speech - including the toast - should run no longer than 5 minutes. Otherwise the guests will find this to be a boring event and will start getting restless. Introductions by the Master of Ceremonies will also take time and open speeches will also affect the length of the event. Accordingly, the Wedding MC should manage the event and ensure it runs on time.
4. What The Order of Speeches Will Be
The bride and groom have a choice here. They can go the traditional route with the order of wedding speeches. Alternatively, they can be creative and create their own order - which is perfectly acceptable.
Which Order of Speeches Format To Choose
Every wedding couple has a different approach to this event.
Some like to stick with tradition and decide upon a more structured or formal format with specific speakers being appointed.
Others like to do something entirely different that reflects the uniqueness of their wedding.
Some also prefer "open" speeches and toasts where all the guests are invited to give impromptu speeches and toasts.
It's more likely that open speeches and toasts will take place at the reception dinner where the atmosphere is more intimate and informal.
Whichever format the bride and groom prefer, they should sit down with their Wedding MC during the planning of the reception agenda and timeline.
To avoid embarrassment and surprises have the Master of Ceremonies supervise this event. The Wedding MC should also be responsible for contacting speakers and helping them with their speeches - including giving them guidelines on what not to include in the presentations.