Archive of ‘WEDDING PLANNING’ category

What Makes a Great Comedian?

Timing.  I know – an old joke.  But timing is everything – in comedy, in music, at your wedding.

You may have an idea about how the party should go, but it’s really based on your experience at other weddings.  Or you may get some tips from wedding planners or caterers.  While they are well intentioned, they are also not considering what creates the most fun and memorable experience for your guests – they have pre-planned schedules that may not align with the natural flow of your particular day.

Remember – the timing of what happens at your wedding doesn’t affect our job – but it does affect how magical the party will feel to everyone, and that really does matter to us.

You want an unforgettable, non-stop great time?  Here’s what I suggest:

1.            Cocktail hour.   Extend it by ½ an hour.  It’s the very beginning of the party, and it’s the moment.  You really will need extra time because photos are taken after ceremony.  In that last half hour I always have the band join me for an acoustic jazz set.  This changes the feel of the music, and transitions to the dance music that we’ll be playing at the reception.

2.            Guests and musicians relocate to reception hall.

3.            I introduce the wedding party.

4.            First dance.

5.            Second dance for wedding party (including couple) – great time for photographs!

6.            Third dance for all of the guests.

7.            Blessing / Toast

8.            Salad served.

9.            Parental dances – I recommend this here rather than after the first dance because it spreads out the fun – the special dances are big moments people are looking forward to at your wedding.  At traditional Jewish weddings, it is important to play hora/klezmer music before your entree is served because everybody gets involved, and for some guests this is an important tradition that they are really looking forward to.

10.            Entree served.

11.            Long dance set – the party really starts now.  It is important to allow the caterers time to serve entrees at the best time for them, because the food may be hot.  The cake however, is fine waiting, and so holding off on serving it allows the special moments to be spread throughout your party.  It’s great for guests to still look forward to one of the highlights of the event.  This long dance set is perfect to get your guests out dancing so they’ll be ready to relax and take a break when the cake comes out (instead of back-to-back entrée/cake.  Not everyone will be hungry for dessert, and you won’t have a chance to take advantage of great dancing until much later, and then with nothing else to look forward to.  The food and dancing should reflect off of each other …

9.            Cake cutting – the band relocates with just hand held instruments to gather everyone around you and your cake to create an intimate moment, also much nicer, more candid photos instead of an empty floor.  I promise – this is not tacky or gimmicky; it’s a sweet moment.  This pushes service later into the evening, and when timed correctly, there will be no more music breaks for the rest of the party.

10.            More dancing.

11.            Send off dance for wedding couple – this is what you think of as your last dance, but we don’t think it should be the last dance of the night, because your guests want time to be on the floor with you – this is some of the most fun dancing of the party – kind of sending you guys off, without the party coming to an end.  On the contrary – symbolically your dance should make the party really take off.  This adds a meaningful moment that breaks up an otherwise long dance set.  Now everyone dances until the end.

These are suggestions from experience and observation of what has worked well, and what hasn’t.

Two experiences of the same moment:

Your guests finish their dinner and feel like getting up to really dance.  They start, but the set is quickly interrupted with the arrival of your cake, and everyone dutifully goes back to their table for dessert.  They glance around the room, as everyone tries to read what’s happening next.

Or

Your guests finish their dinner and feel like getting up to really dance.  And they do!  Summer favorites and calypso classics, and everyone has a lot of fun right until the end of the set.  When the band breaks, everyone sits down for a rest and some conversation, and – voila! – the cake appears, and now we gather everyone around the two of you and play some acoustic instruments.  It’s a memorable moment, and it happened naturally.

Your wedding can be filled with them; it’s all about – timing.

‘Tis The Season to Get Engaged

For many, the holidays are the ideal time to pop the question, and given all of the ad money spent by high-end jewelers, research seems to support that sentiment.   Maybe it’s being surrounded by sparkle that brings weddings to mind, but also because holidays bring together family and friends, and that makes it a really great time to share big and shiny news with everyone.

Over the years we’ve heard some really great proposal stories – really great ones.  We’d love to hear yours too, so feel free to post and share how the two of you got engaged.

No story yet?  Well, New Year’s Eve is right around the corner, and happens to be the second most popular night for popping questions with corks … so don’t sip the champagne without glancing in the glass first …