With season two of Four Weddings Canada well underway, the team behind the show will be sharing their best wedding tips and tricks. Come back on Mondays for advice on everything from choosing the perfect venue to creating the guest list.

The Master of Ceremonies (MC) is one of the most important roles at a wedding. They keep the festivities moving forward and on schedule, all while ensuring the guests enjoy themselves. However, there is much more to the role than simply telling jokes. This guide outlines everything you need to know to be the best MC to ever hit the podium!

Tip #1: Meet with the couple
Your first job as an MC is to meet with the couple and go over their expectations.  Will you be introducing the bridal party, dances, and cake cutting, or will that be left to the DJ?  Once you’re clear on your responsibilities, make sure to get all the details. You need to know absolutely everything by way of the day’s itinerary, as well as particulars like game instructions, or name pronunciations for anyone you’ll be introducing.

Tip #2: Keep everything flowing smoothly
Your job is similar to a tour guide’s: you need to know the who, what, where and when of the entire night and always know what’s coming up next to ensure everything runs smoothly and on time. Obviously nothing ever goes exactly as planned, so make sure you have some tricks up your sleeve to keep the crowd entertained (fun anecdotes about the happy couple or bridal party work well). Remember, whatever problems come your way the show must go on. Guests will look to you as their guide so it’s important to be informed and keep on smiling!

Tip #3: Make everyone feel comfortable
Weddings can often be awkward for people who only know a few guests. One of your jobs as Master of Ceremonies is to help guests feel comfortable and welcome. Start off by getting all the tables to introduce themselves to each other. Before dinner is the perfect time to bust out your icebreaker games to introduce guests to one another and help everyone loosen up and relax.

Tip #4: Have appropriate material
Along with guiding everyone throughout the night, it’s also your job to help everyone have a good time. A great way to accomplish this is by making people laugh. Throwing in a few jokes and some funny stories about the couple will get everyone in a great mood. However, it’s important to do this in moderation. The couple has asked you to MC because they trust your judgment, so be sure to ask the couple if there is anything they don’t want you to discuss. Taking a joke too far may end up making everyone feel uncomfortable, including you. If you’re questioning if a story is too inappropriate, take the safe route and tell a less offensive one. Don’t be afraid to bring up stories that pull at people’s heartstrings. This is a wedding after all, and it’s a time to celebrate and reflect on the couple and their love for one another.

Tip #5: Practice
Practice, practice, practice — this is the most important piece of advice. Once you’ve planned out your program and have the couple’s approval, it’s time to master it on your own. Go through all your talking points in front of the mirror and showcase your routine for a friend to get some pointers. The more you practice, the more comfortable you will be the day of the wedding.

Tip #6: Introduce yourself the on-site coordinator
If there’s an on-site manager or coordinator, introduce yourself and consider them your right hand.  They’ll let you know when to cue guests to take their seats, and can give you any housekeeping items to share, like where the washrooms are, public phones if anyone needs to call a cab, or if cars can be left in their parking lot overnight.  Working together, you can make sure all aspects of the day are handled without having to trouble the happy couple.

Tip #7: Have fun and relax
The couple obviously chose you to be their Master of Ceremonies for a reason, and with these tips and a smile you will do them proud!

Brought to you by the team at Four Weddings Canada.