Seating for formal dinners can be arranged in many ways. Individual tables of ten seated, rows of tables and even large round tables seating 60, by far the style I see less often but is actually worth considering – TWO LONG TABLES ACCOMODATING 35 SEATED AT EACH.
The reason for todays blog? – I recently performed at just such a function – The Ned London (link details below) and it was amazing! Below I will break down 5 tips on what to think about to HELP YOUR EVENT RUN SMOOTHLY, BE EXCITING AND MEMORABLE.
Make sure it is clear where everyone is seated. Having a large table plan at the entrance of the room is a good idea but most importantly, on the table the guests name clearly marked will mean everyone can be seated quickly without confusion.
Be prepared for a format like this to become a little ‘looser’ than you might expect. With large numbers people will want to mingle a little so allow them to move positions and don’t worry too much. This tends to happen after the mains are finished and actually blends nicely into the latter evening section of the event.
Keep The Table Layout Simple
Guests will be sat on either side of one table or facing each other across the room. If you fill the table with a lot of decoration it creates virtual noise and people can’t see each other or interact easily.
It would of course be remise of me not to mention what I can offer. Entertainment is very important. You might think performing to large tables like this is difficult but it really makes a wonderful setting for me too.
I break down the table into sections and perform to smaller groups.
Starting at the end of the first table I will command the attention of around 8 guests, perform some amazing magic and then move over to the second table, again starting at one end. Moving to the middle of the first table, zig-zagging my way around until all have seen incredible magic and had fun at the same time. You will find that people further down the table will be watching and commenting to others and before long the energy in the room is lifted and everyone is really enjoying seeing incredible magic. My style means everybody really does get to see a lot of magic.
If you hadn’t already considered long tables, maybe you do now. Check with the venue for dining options, if they do not already offer this style, they may on your request be able to consider your needs. I highly recommend The Ned London, details below.
Every wedding I perform at feels like it’s been the best ever…
In golf they say ‘the most important shot is the next one’, I do understand that…it’s the same with performing. I concentrate all my efforts on every performance and make sure it is the best it could possibly be. I think that’s why every booking feels like the best ever.
With that said I want to share with you a video I recently made of a wedding at Offley Place in Hitchin.
I was hired for Drinks Reception, Wedding Breakfast table magic and as an extra, I made the announcements. This video really shows the energy and excitement I create at any wedding. Please take a look and message me your thoughts.
Fin out more about my packages and message me below:
I know exactly what children and their parents enjoy.
I will admit right now I am not a ‘Childrens Entertainer’….I can entertain children for sure and I love it…read on for more…, but I do not put on shows solely for children at childrens parties, that takes a very specific style and repertoire.
I can ABSOLUTELY GUARANTEE though, that if children are at a wedding I have been booked to entertain all for, they will not only have an amazing time with me, but will learn a magic trick to show the adults.
I love children, I have two of my own who may be a little older now, but haven’t forgotten the wonder of magic.
A wedding is a long day for anyone, especially the young. Breaking up the day with activities really helps and my fun magic style is always a great hit. If you book me for any package, I offer a little extra for the children. Let me know how many children are likely to attend and I make sure each gets to keep a special magic wand.
I tailor my magic for the age of my audience
It’s important as an entertainer to understand my audience, children react very well to visual magic, simple to follow that is colourful and fun. I will not perform card tricks for them, that’s boring ‘to children’.
When given the magic wand, I encourage them to use it during my performance, involving them in my magic they feel part of the action. I will of course include parents and build the trusting relationship needed so the children feel comfortable and relaxed, able to let go and enjoy it fully. I am very aware and if a child is slightly shy will pay attention to them in an understanding way, often a shy child after a few minutes with me will become and enjoy being the centre of attention. I then teach each child a little trick using their magic wand, which I then encourage them to go and show the adults. This is a really fun way to not only involve them but also makes them feel even more special.
The important thing to remember is everyone at your wedding is important…you know that I know, but it’s vital anyone supplying a service to you for your wedding understands that too…and I do.
I am at your wedding to help make the day MEMORABLE FOR ALL…you can be assured I will do exactly that.
I can’t believe I get to have this much fun at Weddings!!!
If you have been to a few weddings yourself, you have probably ‘sat through’ the standard Wedding Breakfast – the meal after the Drinks Reception. I say ‘sat through’ because if it is not thought about properly, this period can be quite mundane. The Drinks Reception was ok, group photos, canapé, drinks, chatting among family and friends. Now comes the Wedding Breakfast where a three course meal is served and the speeches come at the end of this period before evening guests arrive and the party starts.
If nothing else is going on, certainly if nothing much happened during the drinks also, this can be quite a long time for small talk and you will notice the energy levels flagging slightly……and this is where I come in.
My Wedding Breakfast Package can include CABARET PERFORMANCE to the WHOLE ROOM.
Over the years I have gained vast experience in stage and cabaret magic, performing for intimate events with smaller numbers up to large corporate events with 1,000+ guests. Running my own monthly show along with my good friend Sylar, performing at guests spots in London and offering cabaret for smaller parties I have realised this style of magic is perfect for the Wedding Breakfast.
My style and the type of magic I perform really gets the crowd going, everyone is energised….think about that, EVERYONE IS ENERGISED! Why is that important, simple, THE SPEECHES. The last thing you want when you are either listening or giving a speech, is a room full of lethargy, it will reflect throughout and not make a memorable time for anyone.
When I perform, you can feel the level rise, the laughter, the gasps of amazement, the head scratching, it’s all there and of course the applause. By the time the speeches happen, once I have performed, everyone has been applauding and ready to repeat this throughout, I can create an amazing atmosphere.
Whether you want to include yourselves, father of the bride, ‘stitch-up the best man’ for maximum laughter and effect, I have something to offer every scenario. Message me below to find out more.
All amazing photography from Katy and AJ’s Wedding, Drinks Reception and Wedding Breakfast Package, supplied by Selen Photography – instagram@Selen.photo, website www.selenphotography.com
I will be teaming up with Loveflowers UK on September 11th to bring you an unique experience of Masterclasses. Learn about flower arranging & cocktail making, enjoy me performing magic and there will even be a DJ through the event.
Set in the Loveflowers UK warehouse grounds, with full social distancing.
Tickets are limited to 60 people and you can find more details here:
We are close to budget, a magician will just cost too much, right? Wrong. Read on and i’ll explain why it’s the least cost you’ll notice.
Do you need to budget for entertainment? It’s an expense, you need to budget but is it expensive? I’m going to talk to you very briefly about the budget and what to expect.
I say briefly because seriously there is not that much to consider. The average wedding in the UK will cost you £20,000, and that’s the average, a budget wedding will still be around £12,000.
I understand that every factor you consider costs you money but consider this one carefully, the decision to NOT have a magician will cost you far more. Your guests need to be kept entertained throughout key parts of the day, there is a lot going on during some times and at other times…not much. It’s those times of ‘not much’ to really make sure you have thought thoroughly about your guests otherwise they will feel left out, bored and often drained during the long day. If you’ve ever been stood around checking a watch at a friend’s wedding you’ll know exactly how you DON’T want your guests feeling.
Back to budget, remember that average of £20,000, well imagine you hit your budget and forgot about entertainment.
Do you –
a: Stick to budget and leave out the entertainment. Guests are bored and potentially a wedding disaster for everyone to talk about for years to come.
b: Find an extra £550, so £20,550 to hire a quality magician ‘holla’ Guests are thoroughly entertained and makes the wedding a huge smash for everyone to talk about for years to come.
I’m guessing you answered b? Good! So you realise you need entertainment, it’s not an extra, it’s an essential. In the grand scheme of planning, that ‘extra’ really isn’t much is it.
With no disrespect to other wedding suppliers, my service is one the guests will remember and talk about. That feeling I evoke when i’m with them creates unforgettable and lasting memories.Items like chair covers, table pieces, post boxes and all wonderful touches and i’m sure you already budgeted for those and thought about them but, tell me, what chair covers did they use at the last wedding you attended…you can’t remember even the colour can you?
If you do need to budget for that £550 I talked about, look at other things you are having and wonder if leaving them out really will make such difference?
TO RECAP, NOT HAVING A MAGICIAN AT YOUR WEDDING, COSTS MORE THAN HAVING ONE.
I AM NOT ONLY A PERFORMING MAGICIAN BUT ALSO AN INVENTOR OF MAGIC.
I create unique magic products which I sell online to other magicians and also lecture to magic clubs all over the UK. I have featured in numerous magic magazines and am respected creator among magicians worldwide.
BUT WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU?
Because of the above, I am able to create unique magic for anyone and I offer that as part of my service to you.
If you have a company event coming up, get in touch below to find out how I can create something totally bespoke.
The impact of having something totally bespoke is huge. Imagine your clients and staff are at your event, being entertained by my magic, that’s wonderful in it’s own right, but to then add in the fact that the magic I am showing them is branded fully and totally unique to you….THAT has a huge impact. I can even allow the spectator to keep a souvenir and that will go a long way to everyone not only having a great time, but also remembering the event and then showing others long after.
Here is some feedback from a recent corporate party for Linwood Fabrics 25th Anniversary: “Hi Steve, I just wanted to say thank you so much for all your efforts on Saturday, you manged to survive the afternoon in your three piece suit beside the blistering heat! I have heard nothing but wonderful things from all the guests who witnessed your magic on Saturday so I just wanted to take a moment to thank you. The research you must have carried out regarding the Linwood Fabrics and Wallpapers prior to the event in order to build them into your magic was such a personal touch and the Directors especially were overwhelmed by your efforts. The event has sparked a change in how we conduct future staff events so when I come to planning the next event I will most definitely be in touch and recommend you to anyone looking for a trickster! Thank you again. Regards, Amy”
CREATE A TALKING POINT NOW AND CONTACT ME ABOUT MY BESPOKE MAGIC SERVICE.
Make Every Guest Feel Loved By Simply Letting Them Know Where to Sit. In my time as a magician I’ve had the pleasure of attending 100’s of weddings and I’m genuinely humbled to be a part of every single one – during this time I’ve picked up so many hints and tips which I really feel like would be of benefit for planning couples to read about (also I’ve seen some things to tell you to avoid!)
One thing I have noticed is the joy people have as they arrive at their table and see their place setting. I know you’re thinking this is obvious, great minds think alike…but really, I’ve been to weddings and this little personal touch has been forgotten or not even thought about.
As the guests get to the table, they frantically search for their name to find it not there, they scramble and sit where they like, it’s a mess.
The general table setting is shown on a board at the room entrance, two contrasting ideas but equally lovely here:
With the overall table plans it’s important to:
• Make it easy to read and understand. • Use large type so people don’t have to stand too close. • Use an easy to read font. • Separate the tables clearly and make the layout match the actual room layout. • Make sure the placement of the plan has plenty of room and space.(There is nothing worse than loads of guests huddled around the board trying to find their name and clogging up the entrance to the room.)
Making it easy to read, the flow from Reception to Wedding Breakfast will work so much better.
Just think – any way to show a guest where ‘exactly’ they are sitting not only helps the flow of the day but also lets them know you care.
Your photos are the key to looking back on what was the absolute best day of your lives. Here are 3 simple things to do to ensure they are absolutely incredible beyond anything you could imagine.
1: Brief the photographer on what you want Ok, slightly misleading, don’t actually tell the photographer how to do their job but make sure the photographer you choose is the right one for you. Research lots of photographers both online and at wedding fairs. You may be looking for a classic theme, you may want something artistic, there are many styles out there – just make sure you choose one you love and leave them to work their own magic (pardon the pun) The worst thing you can do is choose any old photographer and try to steer them down a path they have never trodden, that will just stress you and them out massively and it will show in the end results. So, Choose the right photographer for you.
2: Make sure the setting is right Again as above but think about where you are getting married, there is no point in wanting a lake view backdrop and choosing a venue without a lake.
3: Keep your guests entertained I could of course wax lyrical about why and indeed I do in other blog posts throughout my site. Fundamentally – people smiling, laughing and generally happy makes good photos, with great entertainment at your wedding, the photographer will not have a hard job of capturing incredible moment like this.
I hope you enjoyed this little snippet, please take a look at my other blogs
The wedding speeches are probably the most worried about element to any wedding. Whether you are used to speaking in public or not, you will present an amount or nerves during the build up, whilst speaking and even afterwards. Being nervous is actually a good thing and once you learn more about nerves, what they are and how to address/reduce them, you will learn to embrace the feeling.
Being a performer often in front of large crowds I have learnt many tips to ensure I no longer let nerves beat me. I still get nervous from time to time, but i’ve learnt to deal with them in a completely different way. I can now and regularly do perform in front of large rooms of people with complete confidence, this confidence frees me up to concentrate on the people I perform to and this natural persona means people warm to me easily.
Below are some tips i’ve picked up along the way on what you can do to ensure you NAIL THAT WEDDINGS SPEECH!
1. Understanding nerves
Feeling nervous is perfectly natural, it’s not something you can completely stop, indeed you really don’t want to but it is something you can learn to deal with. We feel nervous about new situations, the anticipation of the unexpected, we build an idea in our head about a certain outcome. It is our bodies natural defence and is a feeling normally in your stomach. Nerves are good and help you raise your game in any situation.
2. Everyone is on your side
Every single person in that room, when you stand up, wants you to do well. They will all be supportive of you all the way. If you stumble, it won’t really matter – they all know how difficult it is getting up there, some could not even face going through with it themselves if asked, so hold your head up high and be proud that not only are you involved in the big day in such a way, but that you have taken this task on the chin and are about to deliver a memorable moment in the happy couples very special day.
Make the content your own, from your heart and it really will be amazing. You have a lot to talk about if you put your mind to it but keep it to some key moments during the lives you have shared together. There may be some embarrassing moments, some funny moments and some heart felt moments. Unless it really does fit your character and the situation, try not to swear (or at least too much). There are likely to be young people, some older folk and you don’t want to upset with coming across too rude, if you do, encourage them to cover their ears as you are about to say something rude, making them feel like you are thinking of them will show the room how thoughtful you are too.
4. The 3 p’s – Plan, Prepare and Practise
THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT. One of the factors of why we get nervous is when something is unfamiliar. If you are not used to speaking in front of large crowds, then feeling nervous about the situation is to be expected.
There are a couple of ways you can deliver your speech. If you are a more natural speaker you may wish to not prepare anything at all and just stand up and talk, I have seen this work and I have equally seen this fail. In this situation I think it’s always best to have some cue words or points written down to bring you back on track if you start to waiver off topic.
If you are planning to write a full speech, prepare it long in advance of the big day. Write it, read it, refine it until you are happy and then start to practice it. Read over and over, at a time of day when it is convenient. A good time is at night before bedtime, go over it 5 times before bed for a week and I bet after 7 days you have remembered every word. Once you can remember your speech, or most of it, you will relax more when standing up in front of everyone. It will flow better, you will be able to take pauses and feel more comfortable.
Familiarity with the set-up If you haven’t got a chance to see the room before the big day, nip out from the drinks reception for a few minutes and take a look around. Stand in position and imagine yourself speaking to the room, have a look at where people are sat and if there are particular people who make you feel comfortable, making eye contact with them during the speech will relax you.
5. Cue cards
Though you may have remembered the speech, always have some cue cards with you on standby. If for some reason you stop mid flow (it could be a baby starts to cry, some drunk uncle heckles something or anything else slightly un-expected) – having some cue cards with words or key points on the speech will bring you back on topic at a glance.
6. Keep the whole speech in your pocket
Just in case the nerves still get to you and you can’t remember a point, have the speech printed out and keep in your pocket. I’ve been to a few weddings where this has happened and you know what, everyone just laughed a little, the whole thing became a great relaxing moment and after a pause, the best man started again ending in thunderous applause. In extreme cases i’ve even seen the speaker (often Father of the Bride) so emotional they can’t get through even the first line. Having the speech on paper will mean someone else can jump forward for you and read it through instead – trust me, when this happens it still has the same impact as if you read it yourself, the words and sentiment are what is important and there will not be a dry eye in the house.
7. Timing of the speeches
The bride and groom are who decide how the day goes. There are many ways a day can flow and one brilliant way I have seen happening more recently is to move the time of the speeches.
A wedding day can be long, traditionally the ceremony is around 40 minutes, 2 hours Drinks Reception, then 2 hours Wedding Breakfast meal – overall that’s nearly 5 hours from the start of the day to the point when the speeches are done. One thing that long time and build up won’t help is your nerves. The longer the time period from start to the actual speech the nerves will just build up, people will be asking you if you are nervous, which in turn will make you more nervous, or if you were not even thinking about it, it may mean you start to.
So, here’s the clever idea – have the speeches at the start to the Wedding Breakfast. This means the speeches are over before anyone has eaten and also means the day is over and done with and you can then relax for the rest of the day.
8. Entertainment – plan the day correctly
If the whole day is filled with nothing but guests, no distractions no entertainment then this will just make you more nervous. Nothing else to take your mind away from it will just not help. It’s very common now for drinks reception to have some music, perhaps a harpist to relax the mood, a background singer or of course a magician.
During this Wedding Breakfast (below) they had ‘The Singing Waiters’, an amazing team who really knew how to get the crowd going and the subsequent speeches were the best i’d seen.
During Drinks Reception and/or Wedding Breakfast, having entertainment is essential for many reasons but here is how having a magician and specifically me helps. I will mingle with groups of people and ensure they have a lot of fun. I specialise in making sure people are enjoying themselves fully, they are laughing, screaming and applauding – but why is this important to help with speeches?
Conditioning When people are relaxed and used to reacting and applauding, they will do so during your speech more freely. Part of my service as a magician during the Wedding Breakfast is to RAISE ENERGY LEVELS, so by the time the speeches arrive absolutely everyone is on a high and ready to react by applauding, cheering and even screaming with joy. Imagine if during the day nothing has been happening, energy levels are low, everyone is bored, you look up and out to the room to start your speech and it is evident on everyones face that they just want you to get on with it – careful planning of the day can completely avoid this.
This has never happened at a wedding I have attended, because I have been the entertainment, but I have in speaking with guests over the years heard some stories to make your toes curl.
Ensure your wedding is the best anyone has ever been to.
It is a classic reaction when nervous to speak very quickly. Have a glass of water with you and make sure your mouth is not dry. Take natural pauses during your speech as this will create cues for the audience to laugh and applaud and also help you relax even more.
10. The absolute #1 rule left to last Enjoy it!
Your speech will be over in a flash, things move fast and once over you will wonder what you worried about.
Being part of any wedding really is an honour but you have been given the duty for a reason. You hold a special place in the newly married couples lives and hearts, they have full trust and faith in you to deliver and you will. You will rise to the challenge and nail your speech, everything will fall in to place, you’ll see.
So, relax and enjoy this moment it really will be one of the best in your own life too.
I hope some of the above has helped you and thank you for reading. Please share to anyone you feel may take something from it and stay tuned for more blogs of this kind.