Haven’t we all been to a wedding where that ‘guy’ said ‘that thing’
I’ve been to so many weddings in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and across North America that I have heard more than my fair share of bad speeches. I’m not just talking about speeches where there has been little preparation, or even thought given to the content. I’m talking about speeches that were mistimed or for the wrong crowd. I’m talking about that uncle, or that cousin, or that groomsman who thought this would be a great time to show everyone how they could have been a stand up comic but didn’t because they weren’t ever any good to begin with. Yes, I’m talking about speeches. Here is some advice on how to make sure your speeches don’t stick out as a bad memory.
Preparation. Those who prepare, succeed.
It’s a simple little thing we all have heard a thousand times but sometimes we forget just how important it is. (I’m looking at you, Mr Groom with his vows written on a bar napkin!) No matter how much Hollywood has tried to showcase just how cavalier and romantic a spontaneous speech can be, they rarely go off like in the movies.
Know your crowd.
Seriously. We’re talking most likely grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, etc. You want to make a good speech, know who you are delivering it to. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen someone say something inappropriate only to then stumble through the rest of their speech second guessing if what they just said may have ruined a wedding day. For real. Know them well.
Treat a speech like a story. 3 parts.
Beginning, middle, and end. A good wedding speech shouldn’t be longer than 3 minutes. Here is a simple formula: Start with something witty and personal, but innocent. In the middle, make it very serious (disarm the crowd) and then finish up with something that ties in with your humerous opening as well as your serious middle. Boom. You just delivered a better speech than 99% of the ones I’ve heard in my years as a wedding photographer.
If you want some real speech advice (from the professionals, I’m absolutely not a professional on writing speeches) head over to this awesome wedding speech website. They have a ton of templates and formulas you will deliver a knock out speech without even trying!