Whether you are a wedding couple planning your wedding or you have been asked to be a wedding master of ceremonies, you need to carefully understand the wedding MC duties. It is critical to the success of the wedding reception.
Here are the two comprehensive guides on how to MC a wedding that we think contain the very best wedding MC tips you can get:
Click here for Tom Haibek's Wedding Toasts Made Easy
Click here for Pete Miller's You Can Be A Wedding MC
The role as wedding master of ceremonies (some say wedding emcee) is to make sure everything happens as and when it should, and that the appropriate atmosphere of happy celebration for the wedding couple is maintained. The wedding MC must know when to take the lead as the "chairman" of proceedings, and when to step back to avoid dominating the event. A good knowledge of wedding etiquette is required, an understanding of the wishes of the couple getting married, and the ability to speak well and with good humor to set the mood and gain everyone's cooperation.
Every step along the way needs to be coordinated. There are important speeches, from the father of the bride, the best man and the groom. These days the bride may give a wedding speech, and the maid of honor speech can be as much fun as the traditional best man's speech. There is the cutting of the cake, the tossing of the bouquet, revealing the garter and perhaps a circle of friends, among other wedding reception traditions, that need to be arranged and coordinated by the wedding MC. There is no one wedding MC script, of course, and each event will need to be planned to suit the wishes of wedding couple and their families.
Usually the wedding MC is a volunteer, sometimes also the best man or the father of the bride, but most commonly a family member or friend with the appropriate personality and experience.
Sometimes the wedding couple will hire a professional wedding MC, but that is often an expensive option favored for celebrity or society weddings, or where the MC is also there to entertain.
A wedding MC is almost always expected to have a good stock of wedding jokes ready to hand. The MC should know enough about the members of the wedding party - not just the happy couple but also, perhaps especially, the best man - to be able to tell a few stories for the benefit of the wedding guests. It is usually considered bad form for the wedding MC to use the powerful position of "chairman" to go so far as to publicly "roast" or embarrass members of the wedding party. However, a moderate and balancing response by the MC on behalf of the wedding couple to a "roasting" by the best man is often well received.
The wedding MC should be well briefed on the sequence of events planned for the reception, and to coordinate closely with the catering staff and other participants to make sure everything happens smoothly to time, and in the right order. The MC's briefing should also include making sure that appropriate acknowledgments are made for support and help received for the wedding. There will always be somebody who iced the cake or arranged the flowers, and suchlike, whose efforts should be noted.
Any invitations and arrangements for follow up events or other notices are usually communicated by the MC at the appropriate time.
Being the master of ceremonies for a wedding is a big responsibility that can make or break the success of the reception and how it is remembered. The emphasis is not on giving a high profile performance so much as being well briefed and organized to make sure everything goes smoothly.
As an MC you need checklists and guides, and resources, such as suggested speeches and jokes, to help you make sure there are no mistakes or omissions. There are two top guides that we strongly recommend. Either will do.
Experienced wedding MC Tom Haibeck has produced a popular book called Wedding Toasts Made Easy, which has become a leading guide to the role of a wedding MC. It is available as a book from bookstores, but you can get it right away as a modestly priced downloadable ebook by clicking on the link in title above. You will learn everything you need to know to make a success of your wedding MC role from this well proven guide.
However, Tom's book does have one shortcoming. His advice is great, but in my opinion he is a little light in the joke resources department. Another experienced wedding MC, Pete Miller, offers a less well known downloadable wedding MC guide that covers the important checklists and guides as well. It costs a little more, but it also offers more resources to help with the wedding emcee's speaking obligations, including templates and a great selection of wedding MC jokes. You Can Be A Wedding MC is a comprehensive guide for both the wedding couple and their aspiring wedding MC.
Learn more about wedding speeches and how to be a wedding MC.