SMOOTH TRANSI TIONS, OR­DER & FLOW

IN THE WORDS OF EMINEM “IF YOU HAD ONE SHOT, ONE OP­POR­TU­NITY, TO SEIZE EV­ERY­THING YOU EVER WANTED, IN ONE MO­MENT, WOULD YOU CAP­TURE IT, OR JUST LET IT SLIP?”

My Wedding - - THE WEDDING ASSOCIATES - By David Seel

The bri­dal party in­tro­duc­tions have just con­cluded. Each mem­ber of the wed­ding party, rocked into the room to a high en­ergy, pur­pose­fully se­lected mu­sic clip that re­flected their per­son­al­ity and punc­tu­ated the per­son­alised in­tro­duc­tion. The guests are on their feet as the mu­sic tran­si­tions into a ro­man­tic in­stru­men­tal. It takes us a sec­ond to reg­is­ter that the new­ly­wed’s vows are now play­ing in scripted tempo and align­ment with the mu­sic. Mum, who man­aged to hold it to­gether in the cer­e­mony, loses it at this point as a tear rolls down her cheek. For­tu­nately this was ex­pected so, not only did Dad have a tis­sue handy, the pho­tog­ra­pher and videog­ra­pher were primed to cap­ture this touch­ing emo­tion. As the vows draw to an end and the mu­sic builds, the new Mr & Mrs Smith are wel­comed into the room to vig­or­ous ap­plause packed with emo­tion and en­ergy. The guests are on their feet clap­ping in time to the mu­sic, ready to start the party.

And then it hap­pens – that awk­ward pause as ev­ery­one won­ders what hap­pens now … For­tu­nately Un­cle Harry, the MC, has it un­der con­trol as his pro­gram shows din­ner is served next. As he makes the an­nounce­ment he is tapped on the shoul­der by the venue co­or­di­na­tor. Af­ter a cou­ple of whis­pered words, he an­nounces “the meal is still about 10 min­utes away, talk amongst your­selves and I will let you know when it is ready”.

There are so many spe­cial mo­ments through­out a wed­ding. Each cer­e­mony, each tra­di­tion, each event needs to seam­lessly tran­si­tion into the next. The or­der of th­ese will im­pact on both the flow and ease of tran­si­tion. Tak­ing your guests through a roller­coaster of emo­tions util­is­ing all the senses, will en­sure mem­o­ries are locked in and you have them talk­ing about your wed­ding for years to come.

Plan­ning

Care­ful plan­ning and script­ing will high­light and elim­i­nate po­ten­tial chal­lenges. Work with the var­i­ous ser­vice providers to un­der­stand their needs, fac­tor this into the sched­ule and doc­u­ment the roles and re­quire­ments for each stage. Venues will of­ten have a wed­ding co­or­di­na­tor avail­able, just re­mem­ber their in­put is typ­i­cally from a venue’s per­spec­tive and may not cap­ture all de­tails needed for a suc­cess­ful re­cep­tion.

Think about the feel­ings, mood and emo­tion you want your guests to ex­pe­ri­ence at each point. What will be done to cre­ate those? How can you tran­si­tion into the next -will it be seam­less or a strate­gi­cally de­signed step change?

The MC is most of­ten the per­son ex­e­cut­ing your plan and fa­cil­i­tat­ing the tran­si­tions. It is vi­tal they are part of the plan­ning process, that they know your wishes and are fa­mil­iar with the de­tail be­hind your de­ci­sions so they can make in­formed choices on the day.

Prepa­ra­tion

While your plan is a start­ing point, as­sume there will be some un­ex­pected changes on the day. Con­tin­gency plans should be dis­cussed and agreed. For ex­am­ple, if the wed­ding party ar­rives at the venue early or the meal is run­ning late, will we de­lay the in­tro­duc­tions, or do we have an al­ter­na­tive tran­si­tion and ac­tiv­ity to fill the time?

Share the sched­ule with all those in­volved in its de­liv­ery and en­sure each par­tic­i­pant un­der­stands their role and re­spon­si­bil­ity on the day. The MC should re­hearse and re­fine all an­nounce­ments and cer­e­monies they will be pre­sid­ing over.

Ex­e­cu­tion

This is one of the most im­por­tant, and yet of­ten over­looked roles. You need some­one to be re­spon­si­ble for car­ry­ing out your plan on the day. For ex­am­ple, this will be the per­son that will check with the kitchen be­fore the in­tro­duc­tions take place and in­voke any con­tin­gency plans when nec­es­sary.

It is tra­di­tion­ally as­sumed the fam­ily MC or another fam­ily mem­ber han­dles this role, al­though th­ese days it is be­com­ing more com­mon for a wed­ding co­or­di­na­tor, pro­fes­sional MC or other wed­ding pro­fes­sional to take on this re­spon­si­bil­ity. Us­ing a pro­fes­sional al­lows your fam­ily mem­ber to re­lax and en­joy the day and means you can tap into the years of ex­pe­ri­ence, skills and tal­ent those pro­fes­sion­als have, lead­ing to less stress and a bet­ter out­comes on your spe­cial day. Un­less they are also the MC, their role is gen­er­ally un­seen by guests as they dis­cretely co­or­di­nate with all the peo­ple in­volved and en­sure ev­ery­thing runs to plan.

In­vest­ing time be­fore the wed­ding day plan­ning the tran­si­tions, or­der and flow will mean you get the re­cep­tion you want. Sam­ple sched­ules, check­lists, tips and ref­er­ence ma­te­rial can be found on our web­site.

www.thep­er­fectwed­ding.co.nz

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