WEDDING TOP TIPS AND FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Key Wedding Facts:
1. During wedding planning, brides say their highest priority is their “attire”, followed by the reception venue, photographer and catering.
Wedding entertainment is the least of their priorities.
2. Within one week after the wedding, 78% of brides say they would have made the “entertainment” their highest priority!*
3. When asked, 81% of wedding guests said the thing they remember most
about the wedding is the “entertainment”.*
* Source Brides Magazine
Getting the Best Out Of Your Wedding Entertainment, Top Tips
After the wedding dress, your wedding entertainment is the next thing your guests will remember about your wedding, so make sure their memories are good ones!
1: Don’t go cheap! Professional entertainment is like any other service… you get what you pay for. Remember if you pay peanuts you will get monkeys.
Booking a band or DJ just because they give you the cheapest quote, very rarely has a happy ending. We receive calls regularly from brides who have been let down by their entertainment supplier, often this is less than a week before the big day. You don’t want that worry for the sake of sometimes only a couple of hundred pounds.
2: Make sure you have a CONTRACT, which clearly states what their price includes. This contract should clearly state: arrival, start, performance and finish times and if you are booking a musical act, make sure you know if they will be supplying the speakers and lights and any other necessary equipment for the performance.
3: Insurance! Anyone you book (even a non musical act) should have public liability insurance. If they don’t, you run the risk of the venue not allowing them to perform. Check with your venue how much cover they will need, most venues will ask for cover between 2 & 5 million pounds, some larger more prestigious venues will ask for cover up to 10 million pounds. IMPORTANT! IMPORTANT! IMPORTANT! IMPORTANT! IMPORTANT!
4: Find out what system they have in place if a member of the act is unable to perform. We all get ill from time-to-time and are unable to do our job. Most professional acts have ‘dep’ performers in place (similar to understudies in the theatre) who can step in at short notice to replace the missing performer.
5: If you are booking a band, choose one that will try and suit everybody’s musical tastes. You may be the biggest fan of heavy metal and plan to mosh on the dance floor all night long, but the chances of older guests wanting to listen to this is slim! By just choosing a band according to your own tastes, you may end up with a very quiet dance floor. Instead you may want to consider choosing an act who can play some of the music you love but also a mixture of classic floor fillers. We like to call these bands ‘Versatile Function Bands’.
6: Do look after your act to enable them to put on a better show.
For an evening performance a band will typically arrive at around 5.30pm to set up and are not usually on the road again until after 1.00am. That’s a minimum of 7 and a half hours at your venue, not to mention the time it took them to get there and the time it will take them to get home. A basic hot meal, soft drinks and a room to get changed in and chill-out in when they are not performing can make the world of difference to any hard working performer. No one can work to their full potential on an empty stomach or look their best by getting changed in their car.
If you want to get the best out of your entertainers, treat them (almost) like they are a guest.
7: Check the minimum stage size that the act needs to perform. Stage areas that are the wrong size can cause problems for many acts and can sometime mean they cannot perform to their full potential.
Why use Chosen Weddings
At Chosen Weddings part of the Chosen Events Ltd Group are 100% dedicated to purely the best entertainers around - to give your event that extra wow factor. With over 10 years of experience, we have all the right connections and links with the top entertainers in the country. Our aim is to personalise your special occasion in accordance with your needs. If you know exactly what you want, we will cater for your every requirement. Alternatively, we can also provide you with innovative, varied and attractive ideas for you to choose from.
How does the booking procedure work... is it easy?
YES! The booking procedure is extremely straightforward and transparent; quotes are fully inclusive with no nasty hidden extras that will catch you unawares later on, contracts and terms and conditions are written in plain English with no small print to worry about, and, you still get to speak directly to the act you have booked. A basic outline is that you would find the act you like and tell us you wish to confirm a booking with them. We will then issue a booking contract and an invoice for a small deposit, which should be returned with 7 days. The act is now secured for you. 3 weeks before your event date the band or entertainer will contact you directly to fine tune any last minute details and introduce themselves.
What are your Fees?
Prices vary depending on many factors such as the type or size of event, duration of performance, weekday or weekend, or number of members in the Act/Band.
We can guarantee our fees will be almost certainly the most competitive to be found for booking the best performers in the business. Remember you only get what you pay for. All of our acts are the top of the tree in their chosen profession. If you are just looking for an act and the price is all that matters then maybe you should look elsewhere. The CV and experience of an act is important. If you go to a bar you can buy a bottle of champagne for £12.99 or £99.99 - you pay for quality. Remember if you pay peanuts you will get monkeys.
Why are your prices so reasonable?
Well, we don't take a large agency fee for starters - and what makes us different from the other entertainment companies is that we localise our acts, and because we look after our entertainers they work harder for you. All acts give Chosen Weddings a very competitive fee because we guarantee them repeat business and keep them as busy as possible.
Will I receive a contract?
Yes, without a doubt! All of our events are fully contracted for your peace of mind and backed by our easy to read and understand Terms and Conditions. The booking contract features the details specific to your and the terms and conditions reinforce the contract itself.
What happens after I book?
Chosen Weddings will send you a booking contract for you to sign. When this is returned to us with your deposit the artist is then confirmed. Invoices are payable before the wedding date.
What happens if I need to cancel?
Unfortunately, there are rare occasions where a customer needs to cancel the booking of their entertainer. Because the act has been holding the date for you and may now face the very realistic prospect of not being able to refill the date and therefore lose revenue a cancellation charge may be applicable. Chosen Weddings terms and conditions outline the cancellation fee based on the date of cancellation in line with the date of the wedding. However, in some circumstances a cancellation may be made with no additional charges being applicable (other than the loss of the booking deposit). This is where the cancellation falls into the category of ‘Force Majeure’.
How does a Wedding Live Band booking work?
A Wedding Live Band booking is based on the following:
- The band will arrive at 6pm to set-up and sound check at your venue. In some cases where the performance is taking place in the same room as the meal (and there is no room turnaround time) the band may need to arrive earlier to set-up. Normally, in this instance an additional charge to the standard fee is made.
- Set-up and sound check normally takes anywhere between 60 – 90 minutes depending on how easy access is to the performance area (i.e. distance from the parking, stairs to climb, etc.)
- The band will perform 2 x 60 or 3 x 40 minute live sets any time between 8pm and Midnight. For the best idea of what works with regards to timings it is best to listen to the band’s advice. For example, having the first live set at 8pm may not be the best idea if evening guests are only just arriving and are currently chatting as opposed to being ready to dance the night away.
- The band will perform their sets and provide pre-recorded party music before between and after until midnight to ensure that the party does not stop because their performances have. Some bands offer a DJ Option whereby a member of the band is able to take requests via a Laptop or iPod DJ mixing hardware. And, in some cases, bands will offer a complete separate DJ with full lighting rig etc.
- As standard the band will finish either their last performance or stop the pre-recorded music at midnight (often in compliance with the venue licensing limitations). Where a 1am or later finish is required a band will normally make a slight additional charge for this.
- Once finished the band will break down (or pack away) their equipment, load up the vehicles and head off to their next destination.
What is the ‘Artist Rider’?
One very important clause in the Terms and Conditions relates to additional extras that the band or entertainer you want to book is going to need. For example, parking will be required, soft drinks for the duration of the acts stay, food refreshments (where an act will be at your wedding for more than 3 hours) and a changing area. These items are purely to ensure that the band or entertainer you have hired will be able to perform at their absolute best at all times. Parking at your venue is essential because often an entertainer has heavy or awkward equipment to carry. The drinks and food refreshment do not need to be extravagant 3 course meals, and more often than not a platter of sandwiches will be more than adequate. The changing area is so that after an act has set-up their equipment they are able to change and prepare for their performance, and again, be at their most stunning. Ideally, this area should be lockable so that they can store any instrument cases and other bulky items out of the performance area so as to maintaining the best possible appearance
What do I need to think about when I hire a Wedding Live Band?
If you've not booked a band before but are determined to have one for your event then the following information should make everything go smoothly from beginning to end.
- Check the venue allows Bands and holds the appropriate licenses
Sometimes, even if the venue does have the correct licenses you should enquire as to whether the performance area contains obstructive noise or decibel limiters. Sometimes, if these limiters are set too low it may be that a Party style band will not be able to perform due to the risk of equipment damage and it may be worth thinking about a quieter style act (i.e. a Swing or Jazz act) or a professional DJ.
- Check the venue has enough space and power for everything you want!
Remember, if your venue only has a 6 x 6 ft performance space then booking a 10 piece Party band just isn't going to work!! As a general rule 14 x 14 ft is enough space for a band with 3 - 4 members, but the larger the line-up the more space required. However, many bands are flexible with regards space and are happy to accommodate wherever they can.
Also, please remember, any band that uses a PA, lighting, amplifiers, etc. are going to require a safe supply of power. Normally, a minimum of 3 plug sockets is required but this can vary so it may be worth checking just in case. And, don't forget - if your event is in a marquee; confirm with the marquee suppliers that they will be able to supply an adequate generator.
- Consider when it is best for the Band to set-up
Nobody would want the band setting up right in the middle of the wedding speeches or starting to sound check halfway through the Wedding Breakfast! So, if the room where the band is to perform is the same one where the rest of the day's events are taking place it may be worth arranging for the band to set-up earlier in the day. It may incur a little extra cost, but it will mean the ambience of your big day is stress free. In addition, in some venues it is normal practice for guests to ‘retire' to another area while the room is rearranged between the meal and the evening reception - this may be the perfect time for the band to set up.
- The Band will need looking after too!
Don't forget - the band is only human! They may have had to travel to be with you, they will have had to carry equipment and unload, set-up their performance area, sound check... and this is before they are expected to give the performance of their lives... which, don't worry they will! But, treat them well- make sure that they are adequately provided for by allowing refreshments, unlimited soft drinks and tea, coffee, etc. Also, make sure that they have somewhere to prepare themselves so that they can look their best. Check with the venue to ensure they have somewhere to change and relax before they take to the stage.
- Can I speak to or meet the artist?
Once you’ve booked, the act will contact you in the 3 weeks leading up to your event to discuss the finer details, ensure your requirements haven’t changed etc. Most acts will not make site visits as they are not necessary and they do not charge enough money to be able to afford to give up a day to do so. If there is an extraordinary circumstance which demands a site visit, it can be arranged and a fee would more than likely be charged to cover time and travel.
We have wedding entertainers based the following locations: London (Putney, Fulham, Chelsea, Kensington, Hampstead, Wandsworth, Westminster, Dulwich, Wimbledon, Hammersmith, Chiswick, Barnes, Sheen, , Battersea, Richmond, Twickenham, Heathrow) Bedfordshire (Bedford, Luton, Dunstable, Leighton Buzzard, Biggleswade, Sandy) Berkshire (Reading, Bracknell, Maidenhead, Newbury, Windsor, Wokingham, Abingdon) Buckinghamshire (Aylesbury, Milton Keynes, Slough, Buckingham, High Wycombe) Cambridgeshire (Cambridge, Wisbech, Ely, March, Whittlesey, Chatteris, Linton) Cheshire (Chester, Stockport, Birkenhead, Wallasey, Runcorn, Macclesfield, Crewe) Cornwall (Bodmin, Truro, Camborne, Redruth, St. Austell, Falmouth, Penzance, Newquay) Cumberland (Carlisle, Whitehaven, Workington, Penrith, Keswick, Brampton) Derbyshire (Derby, Chesterfield, Ilkeston, Swadlincote, Buxton, Matlock, Ashbourne) Devon (Exeter, Plymouth, Torquay, Paignton, Barnstaple, Tiverton, Newton Abbot, Tavistock) Dorset (Dorchester, Poole, Weymouth, Sherborne, Wimborne Minster, Shaftesbury) Durham (Durham, Sunderland, Stockton-on-Tees, Darlington, Hartlepool, Gateshead, Washington) Essex (Chelmsford, Basildon, Romford, Southend, Colcheter, Harlow, Brentwood, West Ham) Gloucestershire (Gloucester, Bristol, Cheltenham, Stroud, Cirencester, Tewkesbury) Hampshire (Winchester, Southampton, Portsmouth, Bournemouth, Basingstoke, Newport) Herefordshire (Hereford, Ross-on-Wye, Leominster, Ledbury, Bromyard, Kingston) Hertfordshire (Hertford, Watford, St. Albans, Hemel Hempstead, Stevenage, Hatfield) Huntingdonshire (Huntingdon, St. Ives, St. Neots, Ramsey, Yaxley) Kent (Maidstone, Canterbury, Bromley, Rochester, Margate, Folkestone, Dover, Greenwich) Lancashire (Lancaster, Liverpool, Manchester, Preston, Bolton, Warrington, Barrow-in-Furness) Leicestershire (Leicester, Loughborough, Hinckley, Melton Mowbray, Coalville, Lutterworth) Lincolnshire (Lincoln, Grimsby, Scunthorpe, Boston, Grantham, Stamford, Skegness, Louth) Middlesex (City of London, Harrow, Enfield, Staines, Ealing, Potters Bar, Westminster ) Norfolk (Norwich, Great Yarmouth, King's Lynn, Dereham, Cromer, Hunstanton) Northamptonshire (Northampton, Peterborough, Corby, Kettering, Wellingborough) Northumberland (Alnwick, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Morpeth, Hexham, Berwick-upon-Tweed) Nottinghamshire (Nottingham, Mansfield, Worksop, Newark, Retford, Southwell) Oxfordshire (Oxford, Banbury, Witney, Bicester, Henley-on-Thames, Carterton, Thame) Rutland (Oakham, Uppingham. Cottesmore) Shropshire (Shrewsbury, Telford, Oswestry, Bridgnorth, Whitchurch, Market Drayton, Ludlow) Somerset (Taunton, Bath, Weston-super-Mare, Yeovil, Bridgwater, Wells, Glastonbury) Staffordshire (Stafford, Stoke-on-Trent, Wolverhampton, Walsall, Cannock, Lichfield) Suffolk (Ipswich, Bury St. Edmunds, Lowestoft, Felixstowe, Sudbury, Haverhill, Bungay) Surrey (Guildford, Croydon, Woking, Sutton, Kingston-on-Thames, Kingswood, Purley, Esher, Surbiton, Heathrow) Sussex (Chichester, Brighton, Worthing, Crawley, Hastings, Eastbourne, Bognor Regis, Horsham) Warwickshire (Warwick, Birmingham, Coventry, Nuneaton, Rugby, Solihull, Stratford-upon-Avon) Westmorland (Appleby, Kendal, Windermere, Ambleside, Kirkby Lonsdale) Wiltshire (Trowbridge, Salisbury, Swindon, Chippenham, Devizes, Marlborough, Warminster) Worcestershire (Worcester, Dudley, Kidderminster, Stourbridge, Halesowen, Malvern, Evesham) Yorkshire North Riding (Northallerton, Middlesbrough, Scarborough, Whitby) East Riding (Beverley, Hull, Bridlington, Driffield, Hornsea, Filey) West Riding (Wakefield, Leeds, Sheffield, Bradford, Halifax, Harrogate) York (within the Walls)
We have many different types of wedding entertainers to offer. Some of our most popular wedding entertainers and wedding entertainment include: Wedding Magicians, Wedding Caricaturists, Lookalikes, Wedding Party Live Bands, Wedding Fire Performers, Wedding Stilt Walkers, Wedding Jugglers, Wedding Bag Pipers, Face Painters, Wedding Comedy Performers, Wedding Break Dancers, Wedding Human Statues, Wedding Street Dancers, Wedding Themed Dancers, Wedding Fun Casino Tables, Wedding Silhouette Artists, Wedding Harpists, Wedding Tribute Bands, Wedding Tarot Card Reader /Fortune Tellers, Wedding Walkabout Characters, Wedding Singing Waiters, Nintendo Wii, Wedding String Quartet, Wedding Caribbean Steel Bands, Wedding DJ’s, Wedding Gospel Choirs, Wedding Toast Masters, Wedding Pianist, Origami Artists, Wedding Guitarist , Wedding Ceilidh Bands , Wedding Balloon Modellers , Wedding Children's Entertainment , Wedding Food Entertainment , Giant Snow Globe, Wedding Photo Booths.
So whether you are looking for entertainment for a wedding reception, wedding breakfast or wedding evening reception or any other part of the wedding day, let us help provide the perfect entertainment for your special day.