By Maria Immaculate Owechi
A perfect wedding ceremony has many details that need to be planned for. Among them is the aspect of entertainment which you certainly can’t afford to under look. A wedding is a party and the one way to ensure your guests enjoy the ceremony is by keeping them entertained. The entertainers can be the emcee, wedding DJ, a live band, a musician, dancers, comedians or acrobats.
It is important to choose the right entertainment for your party. This will require critically thinking about what kind of experience you want to give yourself and your guests on the big day.
John Mukiibi, an events MC and manager recommends starting the planning at least three months prior or latest a month to ensure you select the right entertainment for your function.
If you are struggling to decide which kind of entertainment is right for your wedding, we have a few simple tips that can help you come up with options.
Check your preferences
There are so many entertainers that are good at what they do but may lack professionalism. Make use of social media and websites to find out some information about a specific entertainer and the level of the person’s delivery.
However, entertainers are just like any other business out there and can write a nice portfolio to attract potential clients. This is where you should reach out to their previous customers to get unbiased reviews.
Connie Atim, an event manager with Hosanna Events also suggests consulting with a wedding planner who can be in position to inform you about the performances and pricing from previous experiences.
Atim also says it is important to have a physical meeting with your potential entertainer so that you can ensure that they are the perfect fit for you.
Another better way is to attend a wedding where your potential wedding DJ, band or musician is performing. That way, you will be able to assess how well they entertain the crowd and if they are consistent.
Consider your budget
While it is an excellent idea to have your favourite wedding singer or a live band, make sure you stay within your planned budget. If they turn out to be expensive, there is an alternative of getting somebody that gives an equal service to what they render.
Sara Asaba Kavuma, an accountant with Brand Momentum Company who also got married in 2017 shares that she wanted gospel Singer Levixone to sing at her wedding reception but since they couldn’t afford his fee, another local musician called yoyo who studied high school with her husband agreed to take up their offer.
Atim further shares that these days some couples prefer to hire a live band to perform a particular song they like if they can’t afford an artist.
However, Mukiibi discourages against looking for the most inexpensive option because they may not be good at what they do.
He says the most priced musicians or live bands may certainly have better experience with weddings, making them far better suited for your event than a local band.
Consider the size of your venue
When it comes to deciding on your wedding entertainment, booking the right space is as equally important. This is because wedding entertainers like DJs and live bands need space to set up their equipment and some electronic installations.
Therefore it is important to check with your venue and their facilities set up then pass the information on to your entertainers to check if they can work with the allocated space.
“The downside of not bearing your venue in mind is that sometimes as events planners we have to squeeze up the guests in order to create space for the sound system or band equipment,” Atim says.
The events manager adds that the venue should also be able to create enough space for the dancing floor.
“Couples have now adopted the trend of having a separate space either in the center or aside to be specifically decorated in a disco or fairy style for the dance floor,” she says. “A small space is not sufficient especially if the couple wants a floorboard set up.”
Select entertainment that fits your taste
As a couple, you need to sit down and take the time to think about what sort of entertainment fits your wedding theme and tastes. As you begin your search, try to come up with a variety of songs you could potentially have played at your wedding.
During the meeting with your potential musician, wedding DJ or band, try to find out if they have the capacity to perform to the fulfillment of your requests.
In cases of differing tastes between the couple, Mukiibi advises them to choose a particular performance that works for the both of them. Or they can decide to accommodate the different artists they like.
Consider your guests
Apart from only looking at what will make you happy, put into consideration what your guests will enjoy. After all, the entertainment experience at your function is one memory they may carry for the rest of their lives.
Mukiibi says in most cases a good DJ who is able to cater to a range of tastes and moods is an excellent choice.
There are also instances where the guests will prefer a different experience like a live band performing to different genres.
Sam Ochan, a graphic designer who got married in 2018 says he booked Myko Ouma’s band to perform the latest songs with a mixture of Lingala songs, “It was nice seeing how my guests enjoyed the day especially my grandmother who was amazed many with the Lingala dancing.”
He adds the DJ also ensured he played hit songs from the northern region which entertained my relatives from Gulu.
Atim adds that for the guests’ sake the couple needs to be sensitive to the type of comedians or musicians they invite to entertain.
She gives an example of guests being disturbed by a comedian who makes indecent jokes or a female artist who turns up in a skimpy dress.
There are cases where the couple would want to be creative and entertain their guests by themselves.
Last year in November, I attended a cousin’s wedding ceremony where the groom performed a song for his wife while his best man played the guitar.
For their first dance, alongside his groomsmen and the bride, the entourage entertained the guests with a creative dance.
To help you have a unique dance, use tools like YouTube and social media platforms, family and friends who can suggest a few entertainment ideas of their own.
With these few tips, you can definitely navigate your way through the endless options and come up with fun entertainment ideas for you and your guests.