Wedding speeches explained

There are no rules when it comes to the order of wedding speeches and their content but I've got some valuable advice if you're stuck for ideas!

A father giving a speech at his daughter's wedding

In my role as a Wedding DJ and Master of Ceremonies, I am often asked for advice about how to handle the speeches.

I have also been in the same position as a Groom, as the Brother of the Bride at my sister’s wedding and also as a Best Man at my friend’s wedding so I know exactly what it’s like!

It’s one of those moments that most people dread. The very thought of standing in front of family and friends can send shivers up and down your spine and if you’ve never done any public speaking in the past then the moment can be daunting for sure, even for me!

The most important thing that you need to remember is that with some careful thought, preparation and practice it can be an incredibly rewarding experience.

Who normally gives a speech at a wedding?

Traditionally it goes in the following order.

  • Father of the Bride
  • Groom
  • Best Man

There are some differences in same-sex and gender-neutral marriages but the order is pretty much the same. In cases where the Father of the Bride cannot be there then you may wish to include another parent or sibling for example.

Father of the Bride

Traditionally the speech would include:

  • Welcoming friends and relatives to the celebration.
  • Stories about the Bride through her childhood and teenage years.
  • Praise in her choice of husband.
  • Welcoming his new son-in-law into the family.

At the end of his speech, he would ask everyone to stand and toast the Bride & Groom.

The Groom

It’s one of the highlights of the day!  This is an awesome opportunity for the Groom to show wit and charm and with everyone on his side, he will have the floor to himself! In his speech, he will be expected to thank:

  • The Father of the Bride for his toast and welcoming him into the family.
  • Guests for coming, especially those who have travelled long distances.
  • The Bride’s parents for the reception (if appropriate) and their generosity.
  • His parents for their love and support over the years.
  • The Best man for his friendship and support.
  • His new wife for making him so happy!
  • The Ushers and Bridesmaids.

At the end of his speech, he will ask everyone to stand and toast The Bridesmaids.

The Best-man

The Best man is expected to produce an entertaining, funny and revealing exposé of the Groom! It is preferred that any stories shared are kept family-friendly with no rude language. In his speech:

  • He will thank the Groom on behalf of the Bridesmaids for his toast and kind words.
  • He will select and read out a small number of messages from distant or absent friends.
  • He may want to refer to the Groom’s strengths and weaknesses.
  • He will want to share funny stories about the Groom that might be slightly embarrassing.
  • He will almost certainly want to talk about the Bride in glowing terms pointing out the positive effect she has had on his best friend.

At the end of his speech, he will ask everyone to stand and toast the Bride and Groom.

Top Tips

  • It’s all about preparation. Practice, practice, practice! Run it by someone you trust and ask for their honest opinion.
  • Use notecards rather than a word-for-word speech typed out on your computer if you can. It will give the speech flow and sound much warmer and more sincere.
  • If you feel that you’re about to burst into tears, look up…it works!
  • Be yourself. If you’re serious, be serious. If you’re funny, inject some humour.
  • Don’t drink too much alcohol before your speech. Alcohol may make you think you’re a better speaker, but it also probably makes you think you’re a better dancer too! Hangovers, headaches and lack of judgment are not pretty at a wedding!
  • Try not to be nervous. This isn’t public speaking and you’re not under evaluation. You are speaking to a private gathering of family and friends.
  • Don’t tap the microphone to see if it’s switched on, it is!
  • Hold the microphone 1-2 inches away from your mouth. It won’t pick up your voice when it’s held at your chest. The best advice is to hold it like you’re holding an ice cream. Too far away and you’ll get that horrible screeching noise from the speakers!
  • And finally…do NOT attempt the mic drop, under any circumstances! Microphones, especially wireless ones cost a lot of money and for a DJ, when you see someone do this, it all happens in slow motion and usually ends up with a broken microphone.

I hope you found this post useful.

To find out how amazing your wedding can be just fill in my short contact form.  You can also email me directly at or call/text or WhatsApp me at 07799 782764!

I look forward to hearing from you!