Apart from how beautiful the bride looked and how great the food was, the most talked about by wedding guests are the speeches! The most anticipated being the Best Man’s speech of course!
General etiquette for speeches is the following and in this order:
Father of the Bride (or close family member): Thanks guests for coming, compliments and praises the bride, welcomes new husband to the family and toasts the bride and groom.
Bride Groom: Thanks guests, thanks both sets of parents, complements his new bride, thanks bridesmaids and toasts the bridesmaids.
Best Man: Reads messages from absent friends and relatives, comments on the bridal couple (in particular the groom) and toasts the bride and groom.
It is becoming more popular for the bride to give a speech; there are no expectations as this is not traditional. But some words of thanks and praise for her new husband after the groom’s speech would be a nice touch.
Here are 3 key areas for making a great speech, especially if you are the Best Man!
Practice; don’t try to speak off the top of your head, rehearse at least 3 times and in front of a small audience if possible. This will give you more confidence for when the time comes.
Know your audience; it’s important to set the right ‘tone’ to your speech. Rude inappropriate comments etc may go down well with some but not all so be mind fall of ages and attitudes of some guests. Bringing humour to a speech doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be crude.
Keep it short; Leave your audience wanting more.
Tips: use props, get the wedding party involved, use pictures/visuals, have a check list, remember etiquette, do your research, use cue cards, makes jokes tasteful and lastly relax, just enjoy the moment!