Why Is Entertainment Important At A Wedding?
Try to remember the last wedding reception or evening
party you attended. Was it six months ago? A year? Now
try to remember what hors d'ouvres were served. Do you
remember the 'favour' you received? Here’s an easy
one. Did you have a good time? Did you dance all night?
Was the party band
or mobile DJ
In general, most people remember the live
wedding entertainment more than anything at a party.
Live entertainment leaves the most indelible memory so
it only stands to reason that the guests you invite to
your function will have the same impression. Long after
the memory of how the flowers looked has faded from their
minds, long after they've forgotten about those invitations
you sent out, they'll remember what a fabulous time they
had, dancing and celebrating to a great party band with
the Bride and Groom.
How Early Should You Book Your Entertainment?
As early as possible! This varies based on the time
of year and day of the week but 12 -18 months prior to
your wedding reception is definitely not too soon. The
busiest times for weddings in the uk tends to be between
the beginning of May and the end of September and all
Bank Holiday weekends. Fridays & Sundays are increasingly
popular & Christmas is hugely popular for company
parties. Don't forget that the corporate & conference
party market fills up the rest of the year. So book your
entertainers early. If you find a band that you like,
don't let them get away. Fabulous party bands & top
DJs are hard to find and they book up seasons in advance.
Nothing will disappoint you more than going through the
whole process, setting your heart on something and then
waiting a week to call and finding out they're now booked
on your day for another party. If they aren't available
on your reception date, at least you'll have plenty of
time to find another band.
How To Find Your Wedding Entertainment.
Although, some entertainers do mix public club events
with private events, many of the live party
bands or function DJ's that regularly do weddings
aren't found playing in clubs. Where do you begin? If
you've been to a reception recently, ask the bride how
she found her entertainers. To give you the best options
for the hire of entertainment & for impartial advice
call an agent at Yorkshire Wedding Entertainment Agency.
Why Use a Professional Entertainment Agent?
A professional wedding entertainment agency has all the
experience you need. You will save time and money by using
a good wedding entertainment
agency, and still maintain complete control over your
reception. Your party is much too important to worry about
whether the party band are a reliable outfit, will be
set up on time, know how to introduce the bride and groom
correctly, be dressed appropriately, and be cooperative
about the volume at the reception, etc. Yorkshire Entertainment
Agency has worked with many live party bands & specialist
professional entertainers of all types. We know who shows
up and who doesn't. Our company knows who'll make your
event memorable and who won't. We have access to a great
variety of entertainers at various prices, and our agents
will fit the entertainers to your needs. For you to go
out in the midst of planning a wedding and find an appropriate
band, chase down their contact, make a deal, and then
hope they show up just doesn't make any sense when an
agent at Yorkshire Entertainment Agency will do the work
for you and usually at no additional cost. (The agent
takes our commissions from the acts). Many party function
bands hear the words "wedding reception" and
their prices escalate substantially, whereas our agents
know the pricing history of the party bands we work with.
Live Bands are also generally more accommodating for an
agent (from whom they get regular repeat business), than
they are for someone using them on a one-time basis.
How do you really know if a live function
band has the experience of playing at weddings?
When enlisting the help of an agent at Yorkshire Wedding
Entertainment Agency, your options and choices are greatly
expanded. We have already done the groundwork. We are
able to provide you with a selection of live entertainers
available on your date, proven party professionals that
fit your needs and budget. Our agents will ask you many
questions & listen and understand exactly what it
is you desire. This helps our agents to suggest the most
appropriate entertainers for you to consider.
When Should We Entertain Our Guests?
It is now common practice in the UK to entertain your guests
throughout the reception and onto the evening party. Regardless
of whether you are having a church or a civil ceremony, there
are several alternatives open to you, which will make your celebration
a memorable one for everyone that attends. As you will see from
our main website pages, the occasion splits up into 2 main categories.
1. The ceremony, pre-dinner drinks, photographs & meal.
2. The evening celebration party.
First of all you need to establish what you are trying
to achieve and what image you wish to portray. You may
want the reception to go with a bang, or alternatively
you may want something a little more refined or indeed
a mixture of the two. Here are just a few ideas or the
different times of the day.
Your Car Arrives At The Church / Reception
Venue For The Ceremony.
As you get out of the wedding car you could be welcomed
by an elegantly dressed Piper
in traditional Scottish Regalia. Marching, with the moving
sound of the pipes, he will lead you to the area where
the ceremony will take place. If required he will also
play during the ceremony, signing of the register, as
well as piping the bride & groom out of the ceremonial
area. This is perfect for either a church ceremony or
civil ceremony. He can, of course continue his duties
at the reception.
In The Church Or At The Civil Ceremony.
Alternatively, you could have a Harpist,
String Quartet, Pianist,
or Trumpeter, playing at the ceremony as you and your guests
arrive, during the signing of the register and as your guests
leave. These instruments lend an air of sophistication and elegance
to the ceremony that cannot be achieved with traditional organ
music. If you require a more informal ambience, a mobile Jazz
Band is an excellent and very popular option for a civil
Photographs & Pre-Dinner Drinks At
We are regularly told that the photo session at the reception
can be somewhat protracted & wedding entertainment at this
point can help stimulate relaxed conversation between your guests.
Here family and friends will want to talk whilst enjoying
Any entertainers you supply would need to be background
entertainment rather than 'full on'. As well as live music
another option would be a close-up table magician. He
will visit your guests' tables one by one performing his
magical art. Other speciality performers such as a Caricaturist
will keep your guests occupied between courses. A caricaturist
also gives your family and friends a special present to
take home. Engaging the services of a Toastmaster
is a very wise move. His job is to make sure that everything
runs smoothly at the wedding reception. He will advise
you on etiquette and will usually meet with you before
the day to discuss your requirements. He will ensure that
the reception caterers, entertainers, photographers and
videographers etc. all know what to do and when. If you
wish, he will announce the arrival of each guest, and
introduce the speeches. Most have a great sense of humour
and are often a good source of entertainment. Employing
the services of a toastmaster allows the parents and the
best man to relax and enjoy their day.
The Evening Party.
Most evening parties will last at least four hours, some as
long as six. However long, it will be the longest part of the
day, and the part that will have the greatest impression on
your reception guests, but sadly, it often gets the least attention.
This is strange, because not only is it the longest part of
the day, but there are usually larger numbers of people present
at the evening party.
A Band or a Disco?
When choosing entertainment for your evening party, there
is always the age-old question, "Band or DJ?" If you
can squeeze it in the budget, you may want to consider both.
If budget is an issue for you, you may want to consider hiring
a top quality DJ who can play a huge variety of songs and at
a lower cost. Whatever you do, don't book a 'cheap' DJ !!
Advantages Of Hiring A Live Party Band.
A good live party band will have an amazing effect on
the atmosphere and even the 'stuffiest' of guests will
find it hard not to get up and dance. Hiring a party band
is a great way to ensure a "lively" reception
that will create lasting memories you will cherish for
decades. For most of your guests the live music will encourage
excited activity and they will spend the majority of their
time at the reception on the dance floor. For others,
who might have less of a desire to dance, live music provides
an equally enjoyable concert or lounge-type atmosphere.
The bottom line is that live wedding entertainment at
a reception is both a participatory activity and a spectator
sport all rolled into one. This is the unequalled 'entertainment
value' of live music. It is clearly demonstrated by the
millions of people who attend concerts, symphonies, outdoor
festivals, jazz clubs and night clubs throughout the uk
to hear live entertainers perform each year. There is
an inherent power and energy in live wedding entertainment
that captivates and appeals to the audience.
What Style Of Band Should I Book?
Generally, there is a wider range of ages and musical
tastes at a wedding than at any other type of event. Versatility
is a key ingredient to your party's success! Experienced,
versatile bands play a selection of well-loved covers
hits from a huge repertoire designed to appeal to all
of your guests. They are open to song suggestions and,
given enough notice, are happy to rehearse your personal
favourites and special requests - especially your first
dance. Other styles of band like Soul,
Jazz, Rock n Roll, and a Tribute
band are more specialist and by their very nature
can only appeal to a smaller sector. A ceilidh band (pronounced
kay-lee) is also popular. However, unless a large proportion
of your reception guests are of a Celtic descent we would
generally only recommend this type of band to do one long
set and to follow this with a disco. Ceilidh
bands are fabulous for audience involvement, but as
the reception wears on (and the alcohol takes effect),
the guests often find it difficult to remember the callers'
instructions! This is part of the fun of course, but it
can lose its impact the second time around.
If I Book A Band Do I Also Need A Disco?
Probably! It all depends on the timings of your reception
(again, here at Yorkshire Wedding Entertainment our experienced
wedding agents will ask you all the right questions and
offer you some friendly impartial advice). The most important
thing to remember is that live bands will usually play
2 sets - lasting between 45 minutes to an hour each. (Any
more than this and the music will lose it's dynamic impact
and special nature). Once the band stop for a break, the
DJ will keep the party going until the band are ready
to start their second set. If you don't do this, the drop
in atmosphere will make it much harder for the band to
get the audience back in the party mood. Depending on
when the party band finish, the DJ can keep people dancing
till the early hours if you wish, and for far less cost.
(You are only paying for 1 person). All of our live function
bands can however supply music during their breaks and
again this may well be the best option - mainly depending
on the timings of your day and the evening reception the
atmosphere you wish to create.
Why Should You Book A Band & DJ From
The Same Source?
Most DJ's supplied from alternative sources are not used to
working alongside the party bands. They will often play some
of the party band's material (even though they may say that
they will not!) causing antagonism on the event. Our experienced
professional DJ's will liaise with the party bands and they
can share equipment when space is at a premium. They expertly
announce the party band on and off stage and ensure a smooth
and continuous flow of music at your reception, removing your
worries and helping you to celebrate in style with your family
Advantages Of Booking A Disco.
If you go for the option of a solo DJ for your evening reception,
remember that you are trusting the whole night to just one person
- make sure you get the right one !! A mobile disco is the most
practical and cost effective form of entertainment available
to you. The DJ will perform for longer periods of time and play
a wider range of music to suit the ages of your guests. If you
have some favourite tracks or particular styles of music you
would like played he will be able to accommodate you. DJ's are
especially good for small to medium sized weddings. The professional
DJ's from Yorkshire Entertainment all carry high quality sound
and lighting (which has all the relevant safety certificates).
They will play the music you and your guests want to hear and
at a volume that is not offensive.
How Much Will The Entertainers Cost?
The costs vary quite considerably, partly due to the location
and date of your ceremony & reception and of course to the
popularity of the entertainers. Our Yorkshire based acts however
are generally less expensive than acts from other areas of the
UK, as generally, their overheads and cost of living is lower.
Live music provides exceptional value and can be more affordable
then you might think. If you complete our on-line questionnaire
we can offer you a fully inclusive quote by return with absolutely
no obligation on your part.
Where Do Our Acts Perform?
Our entertainers have performed at many functions at prestigious
venues outside of Yorkshire including The Royal Albert Hall,
The Savoy, Claridges, Waldorf & Grosvenor House Hotels in
London, dozens of Town Halls including Manchester, Guildford
and Cheltenham, The International Conference Centre in Birmingham,
The Roman Pump Rooms in Bath, Scotland's St Andrews Golf Club,
The Salle Royal in Marrakech and Le Meridien Hotel in Paris.
They have entertained in every conceivable situation including
weddings in uk Private Houses, Stately Homes, and Marquees.
Can I See An Act Before Signing A Contract?
Yes. There is usually an event where they are performing at
where you can get to see them. However this sometimes proves
difficult to arrange as an increasing number of people are based
in a different part of the country from their event. The vast
majority of our entertainers are aware of this and we have a
selection of CD's to send to you. We would recommend caution
when listening to most bands' CD's. As a wedding entertainment
agency, we receive hundreds of recordings each year from bands
wanting to get on our books. We cannot begin to count the number
of bands we thought sounded amazing on the CD, only to go and
see them 'live' and be hugely disappointed. Many party bands
add 'talent boosting' effects and digitally enhanced techniques
in the studio to their recordings and they are just not the
same in a live situation. Our acts have genuinely not done this.
What you hear IS what you get.
Is It Customary To Feed The Band?
In almost all cases, the band is away from home for a substantial
period of time (including travelling, set-up, performing, &
de-rigging) and it is therefore customary to feed the entertainers.
If you are having a very elaborate meal, you do not need to
serve the entertainers the same meal you are providing for your
guests but a hot meal is usually required. An act performing
for the evening party only will be delighted to join in the
buffet, if this is easier for you.
Do I Tip The Entertainers?
While it is definitely not required that you tip the reception
entertainers, as with any other service provided, if you are
very pleased with the service you receive it would obviously
be gratefully received!
Should I Pay For The Acts Parking?
At a venue that requires paid parking, it is entirely at the
discretion of the party-giver whether to reimburse for parking.
However, if you know that the reception venue has particular
difficulty with parking arrangements this should be discussed
beforehand to ensure the entertainers will have the access needed
to unload equipment, to ensure they will be ready to perform
on time. Similarly, if you are aware your function room is not
on the ground floor, please inform us at the time of booking.
(We do, of course 'double-check' all reception venues).
Can I Request A Special Code Of Dress For
Generally speaking, the wedding entertainers have appropriate
attire for the various types of affairs they normally
perform at. It should be made clear upfront and stated
in the contract what type of attire you would like at
your reception or evening party. If your request is not
out of the ordinary there will not be any added charge
for attire. For example, it is reasonable to request musicians
or groups to wear standard black tuxedos for a reception.
However, if you request an unusual colour tuxedo or particular
colour shirt or accessory to match your colour scheme,
you should expect to be charged extra for this request.
Are There Any Special Considerations For
If possible, we recommend that the marquee company arrange
an access flap or doorway, close to, or directly behind the
stage area. This allows the wedding entertainers to quickly
set up & pack down with the minimum disturbance to the guests.
Is It Essential To Provide A Stage?
Whilst it is not essential to supply a stage at the reception
- it does allow the band to be seen when the dance floor is
full. If you are able to supply a stage, it must be safe and
soundly constructed. A minimum ceiling height above the stage
of 6ft 6ins should be allowed. (Please take note of sloping
marquee linings where necessary).
What Sort Of Power Supply Is Required?
It is essential that a safe, properly earthed and constant
power supply is provided. Venues that regularly stage wedding
entertainment should already have the correct supply, but please
check with them. The exact requirements depend on the live entertainers
you have booked but as a (very) general guide, for an average
sized live party band & DJ - 2 separate 13 amp or 1x30 amp
240 volt mains supply is required. This should terminate on
stage in 13 amp sockets. These supplies must be totally independent
of each other (ie. not drawn from 1x13 amp source via a mains
extension). This supply should be for the sole use of the band
& DJ and should never be shared with anything else. Where
the entertainers have to share the available power with the
caterer, it is most advisable that a 3 phase supply is available,
with each party having a separate dedicated phase. The alternative
is for a high-powered generator to be provided, to accommodate
for the heavy demand of heating ovens and other high usage requirements
of a catering contractor, together with the band lighting and
PA system. An incorrect or unsafe supply will jeopardise your
event. (Please ask us or seek the advice of a professional electrician
if you are unsure).
Changing Room For The Musicians.
Please provide a warm, clean, well-lit and lockable changing
room with clothes rail for the party band, DJ & entertainers.
At established venues, you may need to arrange for the use of
a hotel bedroom if there isn't a specialist changing room available.
Note: Professional artistes should not be asked to change within
toilet or kitchen areas - suitable rooms must be made available.
How Big Is The Party Band Performance Area?
This again depends on the size & type of entertainers
you have booked. For a live party band an area approximately
12ft deep (front to back) by 20ft wide (left to right) is needed.
Additional floor space (approx 4ft square) on the front left
and right hand corners should be allocated for band & DJ
speaker systems (These usually are not placed on the stage).
Please try to ensure guest's tables are not placed directly
in front of the speakers.
Additional floor space should be allocated for DJ's speakers
and equipment (approximately 5ft either side of the stage for
speakers and lighting effects and a minimum area of approximately
6ft square for the DJ and the rest of his equipment). When a
DJ is working alongside a live band, it is preferable to place
the DJ next to the stage, not on it. (This prevents CD's from
`jumping'). For marquee events please provide a solid base and
a sturdy table approx 6ft x 3ft with a cloth.
For various reasons you may prefer that the wedding entertainers
do not circulate in the marquee or function room. It is therefore
helpful if a quieter area (possibly the changing area) is utilised
for refreshments, meals and resting between spots.
We will contact the hotel / reception venue to arrange directions
to be sent to us, if we don't already have them on file, but
for a wedding reception that is not taking place in an established
wedding reception venue, it is very helpful if you can provide
written directions or a location map.
We check all of our acts right up to the day of your
wedding reception, so you don't have to worry about a
thing. However for your peace of mind, if you feel it
necessary to contact the artistes on the day of your wedding
, we'll give you their mobile contact numbers.
I hope you have found this article helpful. Whilst it is very
detailed, it is not a totally exhaustive list and consequently
if your questions are not answered here I welcome your e-mails
if you have a particular issue that you would like me to cover.
We're very proud of the good reputation we have established,
and the many friends we have made over the years. I hope we
have the opportunity to provide the music to make your dreams
of a special day become a reality. If not, we wish you every
success for a truly memorably celebration.
If we have not answered your query here, please feel free to
contact us by e.mail (link at the top of the page) or telephone
agents at Yorkshire Entertainment Agency and we will happily
offer you free, friendly unbiased advice.
Yorkshire Entertainment Ltd
25 Chanterlands Avenue
01482 441190 (5 lines)
LO-Call 0845 345 1945
(All calls charged at your local rate)