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Being asked to MC a wedding is an honor, but this role also requires plenty of attention to detail to ensure the reception runs without any hiccups. Although you'll present the speakers later in the evening and might even offer a toast yourself, one of your initial duties once the reception is underway is to officially introduce not just the bride and groom but also the wedding party.
Timing Is Everything
Nothing during a wedding reception is more uncomfortable than hearing an MC struggle to get the crowd's attention. Before the reception gets boisterous, clearly get the group's attention to make your introductions. The ideal time to make this announcement is after the guests have taken their seats. Depending on the bride and groom's wishes, you might introduce the wedding party once they're seated at the head table or introduce them as they enter the room. In the latter case, ensure each member of the party knows the order of introductions.
Follow the Order
Check with the bride and groom about the order in which they wish you to present the wedding party. Depending on the size of the wedding party and degree of formality, a standard approach to introducing the wedding party is the grandparents of the groom, followed by the grandparents of the bride, the parents of the groom and the parents of the bride. For the bridesmaids and groomsmen, announce the bridesmaid's name first, and then say she's being escorted by the name of the groomsman. The same principle applies for the maid of honor being escorted by the best man. Introduce the flower child and ring bearer next, if applicable, and then introduce the newlyweds with their new names; for example, "Please welcome Mr. and Mrs. Brad Smith."
A Little Comment Goes a Long Way
Many newlyweds count on their MC to inject some humorous remarks into the reception, but the wedding party introductions isn't a time to test your new comedy routine. Preview your comments with the bride and groom; for example, they might ask you to recognize a parent who is footing the bill for the reception or someone who traveled a long distance to attend the event. Welcoming the bride and groom to the room doesn't need an accompanying verbal dissertation. A simple approach is to ask the guests to please stand and join you in welcoming the newlyweds.
If the wedding party introductions are your first important duty at the reception, passing this test with flying colors helps boost your confidence for the rest of the evening. Have a cheat sheet with the names and order of the members of the wedding party, and attempt to arrange the group in the appropriate order outside the door of the venue. If you're unclear about the pronunciation of someone's name, confirm this detail before the introductions. For introductions synced with music, provide the list and selected songs to the DJ, and try to maintain eye contact with him as much as possible.
Toronto-based journalist William McCoy has been writing since 1997, specializing in topics such as sports, nutrition and health. He serves as the Studio's sports and recreation section expert. McCoy is a journalism graduate of Ryerson University.
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