Five tips on how to be an engaging wedding MC

Have you ever been asked by friends or family to play an official role at their wedding like giving a speech or even to take on the role of the MC?

Five tips on how to be an engaging wedding MC

Perhaps although you felt honoured to be asked, you felt a little nervous about being given such a big responsibility.

You are not alone. Many people struggle with nerves, and wonder whether they will be good enough and meet the expectations of the happy couple and their guests.

Let me show you 5 proven strategies for being an engaging MC

1. Communicate with the bridal couple to determine their expectations.

Ensure you set time aside to meet with the bridal couple to find out how they would like the day to be structured and what they would like you to say.

If there is a running sheet prepared, this will be a helpful guide and include timings for catering and speeches. If they do not provide you with a running sheet, create one for yourself.

2. Set the tone for the event

As the MC you are usually the first person an audience sees. You need to start on a high note to set the tone and warm up the crowd. This means connecting with the audience from the start.

You can achieve this through effective eye contact, smiling, happy and animated facial expressions and use of humour.

Don’t forget to introduce yourself and say enough about yourself for the audience to warm to you without upstaging the ‘stars of the show’. Your aim is to create a sense of fun and purpose for the audience.

3. Ensure you cover housekeeping

At weddings and other events, your guests will want to be looked after so they can relax and have a good time. They will want to know key timings, especially when drinks and dinner will be served.

Arrive early on the day to speak with relevant people, and to familiarise yourself with the venue, the presentation space, the lighting, sound and other equipment such as microphones and lecterns. You will need to point out the location of toilets, emergency exits, and other venue amenities.

Depending on the venue and circumstances, you may also need to remind your audience about being COVID safe. If you are unsure about the COVID19 rules at the time, you may need to do some research or ask the bridal couple if they have done so.

4. Communicate with speech presenters

It is important to build relationships with those who have speaking roles at the event.

This includes collecting short introductions or bios from the bride and groom or you may communicate directly with each speaker.

This will allow you to rehearse and be familiar with each speaker. Ultimately it is your job to help ‘the stars of the show’ and to understand their need for any audio-visual requirements, microphones, or props. They may also be feeling nervous so you can support them to feel as comfortable as possible.

5. Support the flow and momentum of the event

It is your job to support the flow and momentum of the event by recognising peaks and troughs that occur in the audience’s attention (especially after a few drinks). You can address this by using humour or by telling a story to lift the mood and to gain back their attention.

To maintain the momentum and energy of the event, actively listen to each speaker and be prepared to think on your feet so that you can make relevant comments to seamlessly segue from one speaker to the next.

If you need to give a speech or be an MC for a wedding or any other event, sign up for a one-on-one coaching session with Kerry Pienaar to build your confidence.

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