Should you have an open mic at your wedding reception? This is where a microphone is put out front and anyone who wants to speak is given the opportunity to give a speech, tell a story or give a toast. The open mic usually occurs at the end of dinnertime. I have DJed some weddings that have had an open mic. Here are my thoughts:
- It gives an opportunity for more people to be involved in the day.
- You may hear some fun stories that you had forgotten about.
- Maybe one of your guests is a great speaker or storyteller and this could enhance your event.
- Someone could say something inappropriate or embarrassing. Some people don’t have as much of a filter or become less inhibited when they drink alcohol.
- An open microphone has the potential to go on and on and on.
I come out against having an open mic at a wedding. First, I have heard some bad things said at weddings and so we try to minimize the potential for something being said then brings the energy in the wrong direction. Since there are a number of people at a wedding, you have the advantage to choose who speaks.
Timing is a big reason I don’t recommend an open mic at a wedding. If you have a lot of people come to speak, this can cause your guests to sit for too long. If you open a microphone up before dinner, it could take a while and the caterers won’t be able to time when to serve the meal.
Even if you do the open mic after dinner, the people may get antsy, causing them to look at their watches/phones and think about leaving early. It is better to keep your event moving. You want everyone to enjoy themselves – hopefully they stay and dance the night way! Here is a quote from a discussion about the open mic on The Knot from someone in the wedding party that exemplifies how an open mic can mess up the timing:
“At first it was fine, because I like listening to all the stories, but after awhile I was uber bored, but sat with a smile because I was at the head table. Then the last person said, “thanks for coming”, and everyone started to head out. I was like, WTF? I sat through so many people talking and I don’t even get to dance?…”
If you are dead set on having an open mic, you could do so at your rehearsal dinner instead.
Additional tip: I also don’t recommend allowing impromptu speeches by a guest during the dancing part of your reception as they don’t tend to go that well.
What are your thoughts about an open microphone at a wedding reception? Have you been to a wedding with an open mic? If so, how did it go?
Here are a few links for further discussion about this topic:
- Open mic for speeches?
- Do You Have to Let Your Guests Give Wedding Toasts?
- Wedding Mistake #10: Not Avoiding “Open Mic Night”
Ivan is a DJ with Synapse Entertainment, a company in the Cleveland area that specializes in weddings.
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