Wedding Formalities, When To Do Them | Getting Creative With Your Wedding Reception

Many couples have asked me during a final meeting before the big-day when the best time to do the special dances is.  My reply, is always right after introductions. First Dance, Parent Dances, Toasts, Blessing is my favorite order of events after a highlight introduction of the wedding couple.

In every wedding, I’ve done, I’ve always found that having your First Dance right away after being introduced is a great transition.  You have everyone’s attention and you’re dancing right into the dance floor. The energy and attention level is high if you’ve hired a professional experienced DJ they’ll be able to help aid special lighting for photos, a first dance remix, or inviting married couples or a wedding party to join.

When I get to recommend the timing for the Parent Dances or any other Special Dances, I like to do these immediately following the First Dance.  From a photographer’s perspective, the lighting will now be the same for all the highlight moments on the center of the dance floor.  Additionally, it is an awesome photo and moment to have the bride or groom hand off their spouse to a mother or father for the following dance.  Here are a few ideas to implement these traditions in a modern way: The simplest is to keep the song(s) chosen shortened.  A professional experienced DJ/Emcee can help make a great edit or transition.  There’s nothing wrong with combining a special dance Father/Daughter Mother/Son at the same time to a special song.  Additionally, you can do fun things like special slide shows in the background of specific photos of the relationships, make a mix and have a blend of upbeat and slower music to shock your guests and show your personality, or if you’re not the type of person that doesn't like the center of attention there’s never anything wrong with coming up with your own tradition or not doing either of these dances at all. It’s your wedding.  Hire vendors that support that and have the experience to make your vision become a reality with a smooth flow and positive energy guest involvement.

When you’re asking a Maid/Matron of Honor, Best Man, or Relative to speak on your behalf I always recommend to do Toasts earlier rather than later.  Not everyone is a public speaker and that’s ok!  A true professional has pro-grade gear to aid that.  Additionally, most reception offer some form of alcohol consumption.  The sooner someone gives the toast, the less alcohol they’ll have consumed during a four or five our open bar.  Depending on the inside jokes and teenage/college stories, that may be a good idea,

Through these moments, you’re retaining the attention of the guests by doing everything at once.  Some things to be cautious about are later in the evening you’ll have a group at the bar, maybe out for a smoke, you may have a guest leave early, etc.  Typically, at the time of introductions everyone is in the room and no one will miss one of these highlight moments. 

- Jason Klock, Founder of Klock Entertainment