How to Pick the Perfect Wedding Entertainment

Everyone remembers that wedding when the disco was so loud they couldn’t hear themselves think or there was a rather insipid string quartet playing throughout the meal or the brides’ best friend murdering a piece on the guitar during the ceremony. When it comes to wedding music and entertainment, it can be hard to strike the right note. Read our guide packed full of helpful suggestions to help you make your big day memorable for all the right reasons.

Wedding entertainment these days is so much more than a disco or a live band, nowadays, the array of ideas to thrill and amuse wedding guests seems to be becoming bigger and more diverse every year, so you will be spoilt for choice. Here are a few ideas to get you thinking brought to you by

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  • Photo Booth – easy to hire with an amazing choice of backdrops, photo booths are such fun and give your guests the perfect memento of your big day. Guests can have their snap instantly printed or emailed to them, these are traditional photo booths but with a real 21st-century twist
  • DIY Cocktail Bar – allow guests to help themselves with a range of spirits, juices, and fruit all ready and prepared with some inspiring recipes on hand for cocktails and mocktails on a handy chalkboard for inspiration
  • Singing waiters – before you have visions of reluctant table staff being pressed into service, there is actually a company called Singing Surprise comprised of a group of West End performers who will dress up as wedding staff and then completely surprise your guests by bursting into song whilst the food is being served. This is so original and becoming very popular so plan ahead as this company are booking up fast
  • Jenga guest book – guest books are still a big part of the wedding day, and a Jenga guest book makes for a highly interactive device that will amuse and entertain and keep your guests coming back for more. Take a block from the stack, write a message and then place the piece back on the top
  • Fire performers – fire breathers are the new wedding wow and will amaze guests of all ages with their fiery performance, routines, and tricks
  • Table magicians – magic has never been so popular, especially amongst young people so why not fascinate your guests with some table magicians who can fill in a quiet time between courses whilst you wait for the speeches. They can also put on a magic show for the children
  • Silent disco – these can be a bit marmite as whilst lots of your guests will dive in and get their groove on, it can make for a rather strange atmosphere if the wedding reception is without any form of music and people are silently dancing in one part of the room. Why not balance this with some background music playing for those guests who are just sitting and chatting?
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Top tips to help you choose the right wedding entertainment

  • Choose entertainment that fits in with the theme of your wedding day. If you are going old school and vintage, then a jazz or Dixie band makes a great addition to the wedding reception. Perhaps you are opting for a stylish candlelit winter wedding, so why not consider a classical quartet or a harpist to add tone and occasion at the reception? Your choice of entertainment style should flow seamlessly through the day in keeping with your wedding theme
  • Make sure there is something for everyone. Elderly relatives may not appreciate a beat thumping disco, and if you overlook small children they can become bored and fractious if there is nothing for them to do
  • Choose entertainment that balances the size of the wedding. A loud disco might overpower a small and intimate reception of fewer than 50 guests, but equally, a couple of unobtrusive musicians would be swamped, and hardy make their presence felt at a large reception
  • Consider the budget. Some entertainers might provide that magic touch, but their actual input and presence timewise throughout your wedding reception could only add up to a small amount of time. What will you have for the rest of the reception? Wedding entertainment can be very expensive, and if you have a large reception then your guests will be with you for several hours
  • When you are planning wedding entertainment, think about it from the perspective of your guests, from the moment they arrive to when they leave. It’s easy to pick things that you like but your guests can have quite a different experience and this partly depends on their age. Visit Alive Network for a range of different wedding entertainment to match the vibe of the night. Things that might appeal to you may not be of any interest to say, young children or elderly relatives
  • Some of the best entertainment ideas at wedding receptions are those which guests can help themselves to, for example, lawn games like croquet or giant Jenga and giant Connect 4, these are always really popular
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One of the biggest wedding challenges is hitting on the right music, and that is because music is so subjective; everyone has different tastes. There are literally thousands of DJs, tribute bands, musical entertainers, and other forms of trios, ensembles, and groups spanning literally every musical style and theme you can think of, so how can you make a final choice? Don’t pick something you really don’t like just to satisfy your guests, but it is really important that you consider the impact of your music choice from the perspective of your guests. There are loads of online resources to help you find the perfect music offering and hit the right note. It is worth being open-minded on style and music theme as there are some fabulously different types of groups that you may not have come across before, and many of these are well used to providing the eclectic range of music that weddings often demand.

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When you have chosen your entertainment, it can be helpful to let your guests know some of what is coming, so they are prepared. If you have a wedding website, then you can add the information to that or include some basic details on your wedding invitations, for example, ‘live music and dancing from 7 pm to midnight’.