Writing and delivering a speech for a wedding is a big responsibility – one that can be very daunting and create a lot of stress and anxiety. Speeches at a wedding can be the least favourite part of the day, and that can add pressure. So, if you have been given the task of delivering a speech and are unsure about what direction to take – have a look at our tips:
PREPARE – It is never a good idea to give a speech without preparation and it’s never too early to start planning – in other words, do not write it the night before! Think about who the speech is about; think about your memories of them as a couple or as individuals. Keep in mind what type of speech you want: are you planning on stretching your comedic talents? Or maybe bring a tear to everyone’s eye?
RULES – There are some rules when it comes to writing a speech. The internet can be a great place when looking for advice, but it can feed you a lot of rubbish. Avoid cliches as this can take away from any personal touches that you can include in your speech – aim to be as original as possible. Do not overcomplicate your speech; try and keep your ideas short and sweet. Stick to the plan and avoid going off on a tangent – you will risk losing the attention of your audience.
DO NOT RUSH – Public speaking can be nerve-racking, and your nerves can encourage you to speak quickly just to get it out of the way – take your time! Try and keep to a steady pace. Knowing your content well can help with any nerves and reduce the amount of time that you look at the page, so take the time to learn your speech beforehand.
INTRODUCE YOURSELF – Never assume that all the wedding guests know who you are, so don’t forget to introduce yourself and tell them what your relationship with the couple.
THINK ABOUT YOUR AUDIENCE – Although you may be the comedian amongst your friends, be aware that not everyone will appreciate your sense of humour. Banter and the jokes you tell amongst your friends may not go down well with your new spouse’s granny. Stay away from any X-rated humour, religion and politics. Or any embarrassing stories that the audience (looking at you again, granny) really does not need to hear.
JOKES – That being said, do not avoid making jokes altogether. You have all these great stories, and this is the perfect time to crack a few original jokes.
SING A SONG – If you feel better expressing your feelings or telling a story through song, then this can be the ideal time to showcase your songwriting talents – both original and personal.
RECORD YOURSELF – If you are unsure about how your speech will sound to your audience why not record yourself. This can provide the perfect opportunity to critique and edit your material. It also gives you the length of your speech.
ALCOHOL – Try and avoid drinking too much of the complimentary bubbly before speech time. Slurring your words, forgetting your lines, or the speech, in general, will not be a good look!
Giving a speech can be stressful but it need not be. See it for the honour that it is and enjoy it!