Professional Toastmaster, Questions and Answers

Q: How can the Bridal Party ensure their wedding runs on time?

A: Ensure the Toastmaster works closely with the photographer to arrange the required photographs so that the photographer can concentrate on just taking the pictures and not waste time ‘herding’ guests around.


Q: When should the wedding party do any speeches?

A: To ensure the wedding breakfast is served hot it is best to do any speeches after the dessert plates are collected. This is because you can never tell how long speeches will take and doing them after dessert gives the banqueting team time to fill the champagne glasses for the toasts.


Q: I what order should speeches be made?

A: There is no set order in which to do the speeches, and anyone can join the speech ‘tag team’ – but always let the Toastmaster know who is going to make a speech so he can introduce them properly. But a good rule of thumb is to ensure that if there are more than three speeches, make sure they take place after the meal.


Q: Is having a reception line before the Wedding Breakfast a good idea?

A: There is no rule about reception lines but the more people in the reception line the longer it will take for guests to find their Wedding Breakfast seats and this could result in a cold meal. If you want to have a reception line, tell the Toastmaster know so that he can liaise with the Banqueting team and confirm when guests should be ‘called for dinner’


Q: Should the Bride and Groom leave the Wedding Breakfast if the photographer wants to take more pictures?

A: On a sunny day always ask the photographer when the sun is due to go down. The light at this time, known as the Golden Hour, is magical but usually occurs during the Wedding Breakfast. Always take advantage of the Golden Hour but let the Toastmaster know if you are leaving the meal and try not to stray too far so that you can return quickly to do any speeches.


Q: How should we manage speeches by members of the Wedding Party who may not be sitting on the top table?

A: Make sure the Toastmaster knows who is due to do a speech and where they are sitting. It is best for the Toastmaster to encourage all speech makers to come to the top table to address the audience from a position that the photographer will have already prepared lighting for.


Q: Should we invite children to the Wedding?

A: A wedding is a bit sanitised without children – but if younger folk are going to be in attendance make sure the Toastmaster has briefed parents as to where they can take noisy children, if necessary.


Q: Are surprises like singing waiters a good idea?

A: Absolutely – but make sure all the parents, and the Toastmaster are in on any surprise.


Q: When should we cut the cake?

A: It depends on where the cake is displayed and sometimes the weather. If the cake is going to have to be moved before the evening guests arrive it is sometimes best not to tempt fate and cut the cake after the meal. Otherwise, it is traditional to cut the cake just before the first dance. If it is hot and the cake is ‘wilting’ cut it as soon as possible. The Toastmaster will organise the cutting of the cake, whenever it is to take place.


Q: Should the Groom see the Bride before the ceremony.

A: Traditionally it is considered bad luck for anyone other that Mums, Bridesmaids and the Father of the Bride to see the Bride in her dress before the ceremony – but it’s entirely down to the Bride (because she is the Boss).


Q: Should I provide late night flip flops for the ladies (and possibly some of the men)?

A: So many venues are left with loads of unused flip flops after a Wedding, which many donate to street pastors for late night, lady revellers who can’t walk in their high heels – so I guess the answer is no.


Q: Should the Bride be fashionable late for her Wedding?

A: Definitely not! Remember that Wedding Registrars work to a tight schedule and may be off to conduct another wedding after yours. If you are too late there might not be anyone there to marry you!


Q: How best select a Toastmaster?

A: Ask friends or venues that may have already used a Toastmaster or check out Toastmaster websites and their Instagram posts. But one of the best way to select a Toastmaster is to ask your photographer.


Q: Does a Toastmaster have to wear red tails?

A: No. The Toastmasters wear red so that they can be easily spotted in a crowd but they will wear whatever you like – within reason


David Mote