You've spent a great deal of time and money planning your reception meal, from appetizer to aperitif. You've created a special signature cocktail and given it a cute name that's representative of you and your fiance. Your DJ is widely reputed to be the best in town, and you've spent hours agonizing over the "must play" and "do not play" music lists. You've even convinced your future husband (or wife) that spending time NOW on your thank you speech is important. Your guests are going to have a GREAT time! What could you possibly have overlooked?
What about the person who is responsible for communicating all of the important information about the flow of the evening to your guests? The person who essentially has free reign over the microphone for the duration of the evening?
Too often, couples don't put enough thought into their selection of MC for the evening, and end up with a drunken uncle who likes to hear himself talk, or a college buddy whose vulgar sense of humour offends everyone present. The selection of a wedding MC is an important one, but so is the MC's preparation for the task that awaits him or her. Follow the tips below to select your MC, and then download the file to give to the person you select as your MC to guarantee that your reception will flow smoothly, and your guests will enjoy their evening, rather than having their experience tainted by a bad MC.
CHOOSING A GOOD MC:
Think about people who have a meaningful connection to both the bride and groom. This will prevent a "one-sided" view, and avoid potentially embarrassing stories about only one of you.
Choose a person who is well-spoken. You may think your cousin would do a great job because of all the good times you shared growing up, but can he string a coherent sentence together, or does he frequently stumble on words and have trouble expressing himself?
Choose someone easy to listen to. Your MC need not be an up-and-comer on Just for Laughs, but he or she should be enjoyable and easy to listen to. An overly dry, boring MC may keep you perfectly on schedule, but may be hard for your guests to listen to or identify with. A good wedding MC should blend tasteful humour with honesty and sincerity for a perfect, enjoyable experience for you and your guests.
Select a relaxed, laid back person. Your MC may have to cover for some unexpected events (i.e. your dad is in the washroom when it's his turn to speak), or smooth over some awkward moments (your best man just drunkenly slurred his way through his speech, and made some decidedly uncouth remarks about your new bride/groom). It's best to choose a person who is adaptable and able to "go with the flow", so that he or she can throw in some extra material to kill time, or crack a joke to ease the tension caused by a less-than-polished speech.
Try to ensure that your MC pays attention to detail. However laid-back, your MC will need to follow a schedule, and make sure that the speeches stay fairly close to on-time. Weddings never go EXACTLY as expected, but your MC will need to keep speeches moving so that your guests can actually get to the dancing!
Prep your MC beforehand. Nothing is worse for a bride and groom than having to manage the reception schedule themselves. On your wedding day, you'll have too much else going on to try to micromanage the timing of speeches. If you've hired a wedding planner, he or she will look after this aspect of the reception, but if not, you'll need to have a CLEAR itinerary (preferably one that you and the MC have worked on together), and your MC will need to ensure that the reception events follow the schedule fairly closely, give or take a few minutes here and there.
Give your MC the document below. Download and print out the article "The Wedding MC" (just click the title directly following this paragraph), and give it to your MC. He or she will find lots of helpful tips and hints to ensure that your reception is as much fun as possible!
Download this article, read it yourself, and give it to your MC. It will help ensure that your reception flows smoothly, and your guests will leave remembering how awesome the food was, what a great time they had dancing, and how impressed they were with the eloquent and appropriate job your MC did.