We are thrilled to share this blog from DJ Yogi from Boston Sound and Light Company. After countless weddings, he knows what works and what doesn’t. So read his take on what works for your big day.
When creating an agenda for your wedding, you should consider consulting your DJ first. While I often go on my rants that the DJ is the most neglected wedding vendor, let me put my emotions aside and explain why the DJ plays such a pivotal role in coming up with your timeline. Consider the following scenario, you and 3 friends are driving from Boston to Jersey in your brand new BMW 7. The ride is about 5 hours at max, like in the duration of a reception. And although the BMW 7 is a nice car, with all of its widgets and fancy (like with decorations and uplighting, etc), that impact to your friends only last for the first minute or two when getting in your car (your “venue”). The first half hour you crack some jokes, chit chatter, etc (cocktail). Then you guys pull over to the rest stop to grab a bite (dinner). But throughout this whole process, what’s playing in the background? Ummm, think about it… Your radio! Sometimes at very soft volume, sometimes cranked up high. But for all 5 hours, it’s playing! Imagine yourself on this trip and having your radio broken, even if you were in a BMW 7 and had the best meal in the world. I can’t fathom the thought.
And so when you are hosting your event and using music to create a flow of each segment, it makes sense to create the agenda with a music frame of mind. In my experience 9 out of 10 times an agenda is created without any considerations of the music or entertainment. And then 9 out of 10 times, the agenda is completely redone when reviewing it with the DJ. So save a step and have the DJ involved sooner then later.
Here are some common mistakes and some recommendations:
Build up the ovation. By the time you get to the bride and groom, you want the crowd to be rev’d up. It would be a disaster if during the grand introductions the crowd is really lively at the start and then it dies down. This really depends on the crowd. Most South Asian crowds don’t react to the bridal party, because most south asian crowds are made up of aunties and uncles that probably know your family more than they know your friends. In this situation, have the bridal party come out first, and then your siblings and parents. In American or mix weddings, they are accustomed to the bridal party hyping up the crowd, so the guest know what to anticipate. However you work it, build up the ovation so that you crowd can start off slow and then build up that cheer all the way through you and your spouse’s introduction.
Often in the agendas I receive, once the bride and groom are introduced, they take their seats and let 4-5 other people take over via speeches, dances, etc. Think about it, during the ceremony, you and your fiance walk in separate. The priest does all this talking. You both are finally married and walk out with your vidaai. During the cocktail hour you guys are changing. Finally when you are introduced, you take your seats? This is what your guests have been waiting for all day? You need to give some emotion back to your crowd, address them as a couple, give them something to cheer about before having some dude get on the mic and boring them to death. My recommendation is walk into your first dance or do the cake cutting (see next bullet).
You are probably thinking, what can a DJ help out with about the cake. Not much really, but consider the following. As much as you think your cake needs to be displayed and trophied throughout the reception, know that your guests have already taken a gazillion photos of it as soon as doors have opened. The only other time people will adore the cake is when they are eating it. I’m not joking on the latter either. Give your banquet/catering staff ample time to properly cut the cake. Have them drizzle the slice with some chocolate syrup or a slice of strawberry and make it look even more delectable. So it is important from a timing perspective that you try to cut your cake at the earliest convenience, so that the staff can dress the cake slices. It is a near sin to cut the cake right before dinner. For one, the staff is busy keeping dinner afloat and may not have the capacity to slice the cake, or they will do a poor job of it.
If you don’t walk into the first dance after the grand introductions, save the first dance (or another slow dance type song, Father Daughter, Mother Son) for right before the dance session. What this will enable your DJ to do is to either play another slow song or continue the same song and invite other people to the floor. Often in Indian weddings, there is a huge generation, genre, cultural gap. But most everybody will get up for a slow dance. And when they do, the DJ will then have an advantage of keeping as many people on the floor as possible. Arrange a special slow dance song right before the real dancing starts.
For more information about DJ Yogi visit Boston Sound and Light Company