Say it with love! By keeping a few key points top of mind, you’ll ensure the words you share are a high point of the party.
Speeches are one part of the wedding a bride can’t plan to perfection. Who knows how nervous your groom will be or what the best man might come up with? A good speech can really enliven a celebration, helping people to relax and encouraging strangers to interact. On the other hand, a bad one can be anything from just plain dull to toe- curlingly embarrassing, so it’s crucial that the speeches at your event are well delivered.
At the reception, speeches usually begin with and are directed by a master of ceremonies, who welcomes the guests and introduces the bridal party. After the MC, the parents of the bride and groom give their speeches. Third in line are the newlyweds, followed by the maid of honour and best man.
Once the official speeches are over, you may want to invite guests to speak – but keep in mind that while their sentiments may create warm fuzzies, their speeches won’t be rehearsed, and it may show.
When it comes to public speaking, there are a few key points to remember. First, ask yourself why you’re speaking, as this will give ideas on what to say. Write your speech down, but don’t recite it verbatim as it can sound forced. Instead, become familiar with the speech as a whole and try writing key phrases on cards to refer to. The only parts of your speech that you should memorise are the intro and the ending – it’s important to know exactly how you want to begin and how you want to close.
Timing is also important. A few minutes is long enough for most speeches, and certainly the toasts.
If you fear that your nerves may get the better of you, visualisation can help: picture yourself speaking clearly, loving the experience and seeing people laughing and enjoying what you have to say. Taking a Toastmasters course in the months leading up to “I do” will help you brush up your public speaking skills and boost your confidence in this regard.
Thanking and honouring your friends and family is important – keep it short, sweet and sincere for best effect.
Be creative when sharing defining moments of your relationship with your guests, but don’t try to be something you’re not – it may be best to leave the poetry or gimmicky dances to the pros, unless you’re sure you can really nail it. The most important thing of all is to have fun. If you speak from the heart, your guests will enjoy every word. W