Here are some of our suggestions to help your wedding reception be a big success.
That’s where all the action & dancing will be, so have your DJ there as well. Guests will always have song requests, so the closer the DJ is to the dance floor, the better. Don’t put your DJ at the other end of the room- this will make it harder to have good sound & lighting and allow for unnecessary cabling and wires along the floor. Be sure the DJ location allows them to see the entire room- this way they can judge the crowd and also emcee the event effectively. Side Note: Don’t seat guest between the DJ and the dance floor. This creates some unhappy guests who may be subjected to louder than necessary music.
Dim the lights for dancing:
Turning down the brightness of the lighting helps create a more relaxed atmosphere and encourages your guests to dance. Think of any dance clubs you’ve been at: they keep the lights down low for dancing & then turn them up at the end of the night when they want people to leave! Work with your venue to determine what levels will work best for you. (Many venues will have pre-set levels that they use at events.)
Be sure to plan your reception entrance/wedding party introductions:
Your initial entrance into the reception will set the tone for the entire night. Be sure it reflects your own personal style. A lot can be done through music- choose a song that sets the tone of the type of night you want to have. Also take time to decide who else you’d like introduced- wedding party, family members, etc. Choose the order and where everyone should gather for the introductions. Be sure your DJ knows this order & the phonetic pronunciations for everyone. (Our planner that we have you fill out will ask you for all this information.) If you’re unsure about what songs to choose, ask your DJ for suggestions.
Spend some time deciding on your First Dance song:
The bride & groom’s first dance is one of the most memorable events of the night. Be sure you think about when you want to have it (some prefer to have it right after the initial entrance while others wait until after dinner is finished.) Either way think about a song that you will feel comfortable dancing to and also conveys who you are as a couple. It also doesn’t have to be the traditional “At Last” or “What a Wonderful World,” many couples pick a song that has special meaning to them. To read about a few creative choices we’ve seen this past summer click here & here. Just make sure it’s not 10-minutes long, nothing brings down the energy of a party than a song that goes on forever…
Don’t choose every single song for the night:
While you can do this, we don’t recommend it. Making such a list requires a great deal of time and effort on your part. Additionally, it cannot account for or allow flexibility for what may be happening at your event at any given time. A professional DJ will be able to read the crowd and knows exactly what songs to play when to keep the party going. They’ve also had the experience & will know which songs tend to clear the dance floor and which songs pack it. Take advantage of their knowledge & experience.
Don’t automatically say no to the “cheesy” wedding songs
Popular songs like YMCA, Love Shack, the Electric Slide, for instance…these are songs that make some people cringe, while others flock to the dance floor the second they hear them. You need to decide what matters most. If hearing a particular song or artist will irk you at your event, put it on your “Do Not Play” list. If you’ll going to be too busy visiting with guests to notice or care, and the song has your guests dancing end enjoying themselves, then you might be best served to not worry about it. Consider your audience as well- if you have a lot of kids or older guests, they’ll probably appreciate some of these “popular” songs. If it’s mostly your friends & you know they hate those sorts of songs, don’t have your DJ play them. Also, never underestimate how the cheesy Macarena might lead to one of the more memorable moments of the night.