A wedding emcee or master of ceremony ensures your wedding runs smoothly and creates the right atmosphere and tone. Other than introducing the different segments of a wedding, a good emcee also balances the formalities and adds some relatable jokes and stories to inject fun. Some couples may choose to engage a professional and experienced emcee for their wedding. However, they may also choose a close relative or relative to stand in as one.
If you’re approached by the couple to be their wedding emcee, don’t fret! It might be stressful to be given such responsibilities but with this guide, you’ll be able to ace your role and give the couple and all the guests a memorable evening.
Wedding Emcee Guide
Understand the couple
The couple are the main characters for their big day. Their wedding should be centered around them. It’s important to understand what tone and theme they are going for. You should discuss the flow of the wedding to be able to plan your speech more effectively. Get to know who’s going to give a speech and the order of speakers too.
To make the speech more personalised to the couple, get to understand any personal stories they have. Also check if they have any taboo subjects or topics that they want to avoid. When everyone is on the same page, the wedding will be able to flow more smoothly without hiccups.
Know the important names on your wedding emcee script
Ensure that you recognise important guests. These could be the couple’s parents, grandparents or significant friends. You don’t want to mispronounce the names of their loved ones in front of them and everyone. While some may laugh it off, it can lead to awkward situations. Double check with the couple while planning to prevent such situations!
Plan of the wedding
Different wedding couples may have different programs for their wedding banquet. Make sure you understand the plan and the flow of events that the couple wants. General segments you can expect are speeches by the couple and some of their loved ones, cake cutting and yum seng ceremonies. Some couples may also have games, dances or audience interactions planned.
While there may be a fixed flow and script, you can also prepare some jokes to add spontaneity and spice up the atmosphere.
Coordinate with wedding vendors
To ensure a wedding goes smoothly through, other wedding vendors also play major roles. It’ll be good to meet with the wedding planner and coordinate some cues to use on the actual day. For instance, while preparing for the cake cutting ceremony, you can use hand signals to get each other’s attention. This allows for the cake to be set up promptly while the emcee hosts.
Other than the wedding planner, other vendors you should also communicate with include the restaurant or hotel manager, photographer, videographer and performance band if any. Find out if there are any specific moments you should know about.
Wedding Emcee Script
When you have the details, it’s time to start writing your script. It may be easier for you to follow through and keep track of time if you separate your script into different segments. This is a sample that you can refer to and make changes accordingly.
It will usually be done in both English and their mother tongue language. Some couples may choose to get a host each for each language. If you’re the only emcee, you will usually be required to handle both languages.
|Segment||What to say?|
|Invitation to be seated||At the appointed time, the emcee requests for all the guests to take their seats. This should be carried out punctually to ensure there will not be delays in any segments.
“Good evening, ladies and gentlemen! As the banquet will be starting shortly, may we request for all guests to be seated please. Thank you.”
|Introduction||After everyone has taken their seats, the emcee should introduce themselves. Thank the guests for taking their time off to attend the wedding. It is also important to acknowledge the presence of important guests (their parents). It would be nice to go the extra mile and mention their names instead of just saying ‘their parents’. Otherwise you can also call them based on their surnames, for instance, “Mr and Mrs Lim”.
“Once again, a very good evening to everyone! Welcome to the wedding dinner of (name) and (name). I’m (emcee’s name) and I’m honoured to be your emcee for tonight. On behalf of the couple and their parents, I would like to thank each and everyone of you for taking the time to join us on this joyous occasion to celebrate the union of (name) and (name).”
|1st montage||The emcee will then direct the guests’ attention to the screen monitor. A montage will start playing. This montage can be one filled with childhood photos of the couple growing up. Otherwise, it can show the journey of the couple together from the beginning.
“Before we begin, let us first take a look at their journey from young and the happy memories they shared over the years.”
|1st march in||Having set the mood and anticipation for the couple with the photo montage, the emcee requests for everyone to rise and welcome the couple in warmly. The lights dim, music starts and the couple will enter with their 1st march in.
“And now, ladies and gentlemen, for the moment you’ve been waiting for! Let us all rise and put our hands together to welcome the newlyweds, (name) and (name).”
|Cake cutting ceremony||Once the couple has made their way up the stage, the emcee invites them to cut the wedding cake. It’s also recommended for the emcee to say something symbolic of this ritual. The speech could relate the sweetness of a cake to the couple’s marriage.
“Now, we shall invite the couple on stage for the cake cutting ceremony. May their marriage be filled with sweet moments as they begin this new chapter of their lives together!”
After the cake is cut, the emcee should start clapping immediately. The guests will definitely follow and do so. Next, it is time to commence the start of dinner.
“Thank you (name) and (name). Dinner will be served shortly. We hope that everyone will enjoy what we have prepared and have a wonderful evening. Enjoy!”
|2nd montage||After the guests have finished some of the dishes, the emcee will direct their attention to the screen again for the 2nd montage. This montage will usually be a video of the couple’s wedding activities during the morning of the day. It allows guests who weren’t there for the earlier parts of the wedding to also experience what they have gone through.
“Ladies and gentlemen, we hope you are enjoying the food so far. Now, for those who were not present during the morning ceremony, you might be curious about what went down! Let us focus our attention back on the screen again to revisit some of the exciting moments that took place earlier on.”
The lights will dim as the video starts. During this time, the couple would have changed into another outfit for their 2nd march in.
|2nd march in||The emcee welcomes the couple back in for their 2nd march in.
“Once again, let us put our hands together to welcome the lovely couple back!”
|Pop the champagne||As the couple approaches the stage, the emcee will invite them to pop the champagne.
“We shall now invite the couple up to pop the champagne.”
|Yum seng||After they have popped the champagne, it’s time to invite the couple’s parents, immediate family members and wedding party members up to join in the traditional yum seng ceremony.
“As champagne is a symbol of celebrations and happiness, may I invite the parents, relatives and close friends of the couple up onto stage to join (name) and (name) in the traditional yum seng. For the rest of the guests, let’s also rise and raise our glasses to give three toasts to celebrate this joyous occasion!”
When everyone has found a spot to stand on stage with their glasses, the emcee will start each toast with a saying. The sayings can vary based on the parents’ wishes for the couple. These can be discussed beforehand with the emcee. Meanwhile, some of the common ones are as follow.
“The first toast wishes the couple an eternal love in their marital life”
“The second toast wishes the couple a marriage full of mutual respect and appreciation in their life ahead.
“The third toast blesses the couple with bountiful children in their lives ahead.
|Couple’s speech||After the toast, the couple will remain on stage to give their thank you speech.
“Thank you everyone. Please take your seats while we invite the couple to say a few words now.”
This segment can vary based on how many speeches there will be and the order of these speeches. The emcee should prepare beforehand a short introduction of who will be giving the speech before each speech commences.
|Photo-taking||After the speech, the couple will move from table to table for photo-taking.
“Thank you (name) and (name) for your touching words. We wish you all the best as you embark on this new chapter of your lives together. The couple will now be going around to have their photos taken with each table. Please enjoy the rest of the dinner in the meantime!
|End of banquet||As the night draws to a close, the emcee will take the stage again to conclude the wedding ceremony.
“Ladies and gentlemen, we have come to the end of the wedding banquet. On behalf of the couple and their parents, I thank you once again for taking the time to come here to celebrate this joyful union. I hope you have enjoyed your time here tonight. Thank you!
This is a basic guideline to how you should approach your emcee script. It is always better to personalise it to the wedding by adding anecdotes and jokes unique to the couple.