Thursday, 10 April 2014
Essential Tips on Wedding Entertainment from Sticky Toffee Jazz
Well its high time we started introducing you some of the fabulous suppliers that will be in attendance at our next events!
On Sunday 8th June at The Manor Barn, near Salisbury (for the first Wiltshire Bridal Boot Sale), one very special lady will be there, ready to entertain and frankly wow with her silky smooth singing. Sandy Ince of Sticky Toffee Jazz has a sophisticated Jazz and Swing repertoire, both modern and traditional. Singing classics in her own style is what sets her apart from the rest. With her vast experience, we asked Sandy for her top tips on booking entertainment for your wedding.
"Your entertainment is so crucial to setting the tone and atmosphere on your special day...
1. Keep it local. It's all too easy in contacting big agencies to do the leg work for you but if I'm honest the personal touch can often be lost and the cost will probably be more. Ask around and ask around more, you'll find the perfect one for you!
2. Consider a balance. Having your favourite local pub band play all their own music all evening might be your kind of heaven but many of your guests might not have heard any of their songs before. After all it's a time to catch up and share great memories together and you'll regret not seeing Uncle Bob doing his moves on the dance floor! Perhaps ask them for a few familiar covers to cater for everyone.
3. Take a business card and keep it safe. Remember when you saw that really great act 2 years ago and you were just thinking how you needed an occasion to book them? Now you can't remember their name and the landlord has moved on. You should have kept that business card...
4. What a find! It's probably no surprise when I say I take private bookings mainly from public performances, and very few from text adverts. Live viewings are always best. Likewise, just because there's a busker on the street doesn't mean they don't perform at weddings. We've all been there - what matters is that you stopped, listened and loved them!
5. Just ask... If you're lucky enough to have a live act don't be afraid to ask if they can work a disco into the price. They might already work alongside a good DJ or even better, some people like myself can offer a package to help people on a budget or those who want to keep a specific theme for the evening.
6. Go and hear them! Please, please don't book an act for your wedding without hearing them... Do take recommendation, however, if they don't have a website or very least a social media page to find out more, be warned. You wouldn't choose a photographer without seeing their portfolio... Wedding entertainment is a huge part of the party.
7. The legal stuff... I always ensure my Public Liability Insurance and PAT tested equipment certificates are available at every performance and up to date. It only takes one historical venue to ask for evidence and if your entertainer can't provide this they could be turned away.
8. The contract. Even though it's all very formal, a professional act should be able to provide you with a contract which will clearly highlight all you "both" need to know regarding the booking. Make sure you read over it and that there is a contingency plan, just in case.
9. Get to know each other. Try to get to know your act as you will feel much more at ease. Go and hear them perform a couple of times if you can, make yourself known and ask for their advice. I love discussing plans and have learnt over the years the importance in making my couples feel relaxed and excited about their first dance, often recording a demo and sending it to them to have a little rehearsal. It'll be worth it on the day...
10. Keep in touch. After your wedding day there's nothing nicer than seeing your couples turn up at a public gig to reminisce and offer their support. I've stayed in touch with a number of couples and it's not unheard to perform at further family gatherings. I love seeing them all again and their new editions!"