Wedding planning involves plenty of decisions – you need to choose everything from the theme and the colours to the seating plan at the reception. One of the major decisions to make involves the wedding entertainment. The music played is often the key to generating atmosphere at the reception.
So, when the wedding invitations are sent, how do you pick the right wedding act for your wedding?
Think about your music preferences
First, it’s important to think what type of music you enjoy. Since the music will play a key role at your wedding, you want to ensure you pick something you enjoy listening to. If you hate jazz music, you don’t want to ruin your wedding by hiring a jazz band.
When thinking about the genres, you want to consider both your personal likes as well as the wedding theme in general. Music is an easy way to enhance the theme – a vintage wedding would benefit from complimentary big band style music, for instance. If you have a very formal and elegant wedding planned, a string quartet might add just the right type of sophistication to your wedding reception.
By selecting a broader theme and genre for the act, you narrow your search and make it easier to start looking for the right band or performer.
Check for recommendations
If you have friends or family members who have recently tied the knot and you enjoyed the music at their weddings, ask for recommendations. Your friends and family might also have a good band in mind you can check.
Of course, you can find recommendations online as well. If you follow popular wedding blogs or forums, you can write down band suggestions and check them out for a shortlist.
Create a shortlist
By checking wedding act websites and talking to friends and family, you should start having quite a few possible options to choose from. You want to create a shortlist based on these suggestions. Once you have a shortlist, you can start contacting the acts and check their availability and prices – unless this information is readily available on the site. If they’re not available or they are out of range in terms of the budget, you can tick them off.
See the act perform live
It’s important to see the act perform live. If you’re not considering someone who you’ve previously seen, you could check if they perform at a public event before the wedding. Most wedding performers perform outside of weddings as well. In addition, you can find video recordings online and bands often have sample tracks on their website.
Even if you can’t see a performance live, you definitely want to meet up with the band to discuss your preferences. You can often see what type of professionals you’re dealing with and get confirmation on whether the act seems the right just by having a chat.
Get it in writing
Once you’ve chosen your favourite wedding act, you need to negotiate a contract. During the negotiations, you also need to check with the wedding venue and get on top of any restrictions and rules the venue might have in terms of music.
This will usually be easy to do, but ensure your written agreement should detail information on the price, cancellation and refund policy (both in terms of you and the performer cancelling), the length of the booking, food and drink policy, and extra time fees. Make sure to read everything before you sign the contract.
When it comes to finding the right wedding act for your wedding, you want to start looking early enough to ensure you don’t need to make a panic pick. Always get agreements in writing and find someone with good references and a solid reputation.