Master of Ceremonies

A Master of Ceremonies: otherwise called an MC, Emcee, or Toastmaster. The definition in the context of a wedding is, however, the same – they are the person who acts as a host on behalf of the bride’s parents, making the welcome speech and introducing special guests. 

In Scotland they may take on an extended role – that of Storyteller. If they are well versed in folk law, they may tell special Highland tales to the guests about the clans.

Do I have to have a Master of Ceremonies at my wedding?

No, you do not. Should you choose not to have an MC, these duties will fall to the Best Man. At a smaller wedding this should be well within the capability of the Best Man to manage. However, at a large social wedding an MC is generally regarded as essential.

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So, what does a Master of Ceremonies do?

The duties of the MC are to act as your host. Usually, they are not an entertainer, but direct the entertainment. They will “oversee” your reception, ensuring your programme of events is running smoothly and on time. Therefore, in order for him/her to carry out their duties you will need to meet to inform the MC of:


– the number of guests 
– to identify the bridal party and any special VIP’s 
– your wedding day timetable 
– the toasts to be given, in what order and by whom 
– the set-up, i.e. if the speeches are to be given at the head table, or a special platform 
– if you are having a DJ or live music, the DJ’s/band leaders name 
– any other details to ensure the smooth running of your wedding reception

On your wedding day it will then be up to the MC to:


– check prior to the guests arriving any electrical equipment, eg. microphones used 
– liaise with the DJ/band leader for any special effects, eg. drum rolls 
– receive your guests at the wedding venue 
– if requested, introduce your guests to the wedding reception line 
– direct the guests to the reception area, refreshments, powder rooms 
– direct your VIP’s to special tables 
– announce that “dinner is served” 
– asks guests “to be upstanding to receive the bridal party” 
– formally welcomes guests “to this auspicious occasion” 
– if requested, introduces the person who will say grace 
– introduces the bridal party to other guests 
– announces the commencement of the speeches/toasts 
– if requested, propose certain toasts, eg. to absent friends 
– announces the cutting of the cake 
– announces the bridal waltz 
– invites the other guests to start dancing 
– announces the throwing of the bride’s bouquet 
– announces the departure of the bride and groom

How do I find a good Master of Ceremonies?

Usually by word of mouth. Alternatively you may have seen one at an event or function you attended. Ask for a recommendation from people within the wedding business. When you meet with an MC I believe it is essential that you have a rapport with them. This will certainly put you at ease and you will be more inclined to relax and enjoy the wedding. 

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