You’ve been down the aisle and you’re ready to celebrate! How do you plan to party after your “I do’s” have been said? Choosing the entertainment for your reception is one of THE biggest choices you have to make. These days, DJ’s take the stage at most post-wedding celebrations, but bands are slowly making a comeback. Which is right for you?
Find The PERFECT Wedding Band
Having live music is a great way to celebrate on your wedding night. Most wedding bands have special sets for the dinner portion of your reception, and then specialize in a certain “style” of music for getting the party started. DON’T expect your wedding band to play all top 40 songs, or even the overplayed line dances you’re used to hearing. The band you choose will be responsible for entertaining your guests with a limited number of songs.
The perfect band is out there, but you need to leave yourself time to find it! Start your search 9 months before your big day. Prices of live entertainment vary by the number of band members and the length of your reception. Expect a 4 person band to cost you $800-$1,300 for a 4 hour party, and a 5-6 member group to cost between $1,500 and $2,000. You may find a deal out there, but be sure to request a “live performance” DVD so you know exactly what you’re getting!
Once you’ve found the perfect band, make sure to provide them with a list of things you DON’T want played. Together, determine a dance contest, party game, or other way to get the crowd up and moving. Do you or your fiancé play a musical instrument? Jump on stage and surprise the audience!
Choosing a Wedding DJ
The traditional Wedding DJ is still a great way to keep your guests having fun and entertained at your reception, and continues to be the most flexible option for those with music varied musical tastes. A DJ can play all types of tempos and genres, and can create a playlist tailored to the events at your reception.
Though a DJ can seem like a SAFE alternative to a wedding band, be sure to read reviews and ask for personal references prior making a selection. The flexibility a DJ can offer is not valuable when dealing with someone who is unskilled, has unreliable equipment, and is unwilling to work with you. Expect a professional MC to cost you between $750 and $1,400 for a 4 hour reception. If you’re having a large number of guests, there may be a fee for a larger sound system, or adding lighting effects.
Be upfront with your DJ about your desired engagement level. Do you want a true “Master of Ceremonies,” or someone to just spin the tunes? Don’t be shy when it comes to making special requests, or handing over a list of songs! The DJ will appreciate the direction, and will work harder to make you happy.
Have a duo or trio play during dinner at the reception. Choose small groups that feature instruments like harps, violins, and more. Then pay a DJ for performing only when you want your guests on the dance floor. If you can afford both, this option is sure to give you an evening tailored to your musical tastes!
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