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The W - Random - Have you ever MC'd a wedding reception?
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Oliver
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Since: 20.6.02
From: #YEG

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 0.51
I ask because that's my task on Saturday.

I have literally NO IDEA what to do or what the job entails.

Help?

Have any W's had the opportunity to be MC's and can anyone offer sound advice on what (and what NOT) to do?

I could Google this, and I have...but I trust the opinions and experiences of the members here, which is why I ask.

Thanks!



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redsoxnation
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Since: 24.7.02

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.27
Never done it, but tried to convince enough brides to be not to sign the pre nup. Not sure if GNR's 'I used to love her, but I had to kill her' would be an appropriate song. When in doubt, play Manilow.
tarnish
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Since: 13.2.02
From: Back in the Heart of Hali

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#3 Posted on
I got to do this twice, both times on short notice, so I feel your pain.

Every wedding is different and every situation is different, but there are a couple of things you can keep in mind which should apply in most situations.

First, find out what the couple expects from you. At both weddings I MC'd I was expected to know and be able to tell people what was going on, what was next, when the cake cutting was supposed to happen, etc.; this can be as simple as keeping a card with the schedule in your pocket. You might have to talk to the crowd when the Bride and Groom are off having their pictures taken. Again, knowing what they expect you to be responsible for is the biggest key.

In terms of speaking, it all comes down to how comfortable you are talking to groups of people and also how well you know those people. At my sister's wedding it was easy because I knew everyone there. At my buddy's wedding where I was already best man, I had already come to terms with the fact that I was going to have to make a speech in front of people I didn't know, so the MC'ing part just meant "more talking". If you're not super comfortable with public speaking, try to keep it light and limited to directing the proceedings. Nobody's going to complain that you didn't talk enough if you're giving people the information they need.

One tip I was given by my uncle a long time ago that works in almost all public speaking engagements is to have one (or, preferably, a couple of) "go-to" bits: short anecdotes or (very very tame) jokes you can use if you find yourself flustered. If you know the couple really well, something personal and perhaps poignant about their relationship is perfect. Something you know well that you won't have to memorize is better because you won't have to think about it. But if you must, memorize it; speaking from the head isn't as good as speaking from the heart, but it's also better than floundering and sputtering and generally having all your worst fears about public speaking come true in front of a bunch of people.

Try not to use getting the couple to kiss as an out if you can help it; the crowd will do that plenty of times.

Stay away from the bar until you're mostly done your duties. This sucks, but it's better than being half-cut and saying something unfortunate because your filters are off. (Unless you don't drink, in which case, keep not drinking)

Always remember that this is the couple's day (especially the Bride). If people are talking about the MC the next day she's not going to be happy and it's probably going to be for the wrong reasons.

Avoid marriage jokes. Seriously. These two people are getting married because they want to and they want a wonderful and memorable day. They really believe it's going to work and you're there to support them. Someone will make some crack about how the groom is doomed or whatever; let that be someone else.

Edit: Also, Good Luck!! Relax! You'll do fine!


(edited by tarnish on 21.6.11 1926)
Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02
From: Huntington, NY

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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.22
    Originally posted by tarnish
    Always remember that this is the couple's day (especially the Bride). If people are talking about the MC the next day she's not going to be happy and it's probably going to be for the wrong reasons.


Quoted for truth. I would even argue that jokes should be left to the Maid of Honor and the Best Man. In the case of an MC, less is more.

At our wedding, we had a DJ (who was also our MC) that had never MC'd or DJ'd a wedding before (he was a student with whom I work, so I had some well-founded belief that he wasn't an idiot).

The biggest thing I told him was that the evening would go as it went. It wasn't his job to keep the dance floor busy if people were clearly enjoying some mingle time, nor was he to be the star of the show. His job was simple - keep us on schedule and to play good music.

He ended up doing an excellent job. Again, less is more.
Oliver
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Since: 20.6.02
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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 0.51
Thanks for all the advice: after the reception, I made the groom promise he'd be the MC at my wedding reception next year! Turnaround is fair play!



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Spank E
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Since: 2.1.02
From: Bournemouth, UK

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#6 Posted on
The DJ at my wedding was absolutely appalling. At one point, he started making randomly making balloon animals for the kids there. Later on, he decided that playing music just wasn't enough and started singing over the songs he was playing. Eventually, my brother-in-law had to go over to him and gently advise him that we'd paid to hear the original artists sing the songs and not him. He didn't quite get this and the discussion went on and on until my brother-in-law said (and I quote) "The bride and groom have said more music, less speaky-speaky."

We spoke to the company who booked him, who told us that they'd had a few problems with him in the past. Thanks for letting us know beforehand. At least we got some money back from them, though.



Oliver
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Since: 20.6.02
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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 0.51
    Originally posted by Spank E
    The DJ at my wedding was absolutely appalling. At one point, he started making randomly making balloon animals for the kids there. Later on, he decided that playing music just wasn't enough and started singing over the songs he was playing. Eventually, my brother-in-law had to go over to him and gently advise him that we'd paid to hear the original artists sing the songs and not him. He didn't quite get this and the discussion went on and on until my brother-in-law said (and I quote) "The bride and groom have said more music, less speaky-speaky."

    We spoke to the company who booked him, who told us that they'd had a few problems with him in the past. Thanks for letting us know beforehand. At least we got some money back from them, though.
Oh, good lord, don't get me started.

A number of years ago, I attended my best friends' sister's wedding. The groom's brother was the MC. He had the kids in tow, and they had free reign on the mic. More frequently than not, they'd grab hold of the mike, burp and laugh as though it was the funniest thing ever. OR...they'd make farting noises. I brought it to the MC's attention, who shrugged, saying that boys will be boys. To hell with that.

The DJs at the wedding I MC'd will not be hired for our wedding. I didn't have the same problem as Spank E did, but they barely spoke English, and didn't understand the idea of requests. Heck, they didn't originally understand the idea of feeding a laptop to their speaker system for a slide show idea we wanted to have.

Meh.



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