Look into my eyes, the eyes, don't look around my eyes, look into my eyes. You're under. You will read this blog post about alternative wedding entertainment and refrain from rolling your eyes at this indulgent Little Britain reference. You will also erase any previous underwhelming experiences with magicians, circus performers or caricaturists from your memory and open your mind to a world of unique acts for your wedding.
Have you ever been to a wedding without any entertainment? Dull, right? There’s nothing worse than shifting uncomfortably in your seat whilst listening to Aunt Linda drone on about her cat’s yeast dermatitis because you’re unable to escape to a dance floor. We all know how much value a good band or DJ (sans Macarena – don’t fight me on this) can bring to an event. And watching your guests belt out Mr Brightside at the end of the night – fifth Hendrick’s and tonic in one hand, six-inch heels in the other – provides entertainment in itself.
But have you thought about alternative forms of entertainment? Something to warm up the crowd whilst the canapés are making the rounds? I’m not talking about anything crazy, like performing elephants (nobody will find it entertaining when PETA knocks on the door, naked and covered in fake blood), but there are so many acts out there, from the quirky to the awe-inspiring, which will surely make your wedding a memorable one for your guests. To name just a few: fortune tellers, jugglers, stiltwalkers, puppeteers, lookalikes, balloon modellers, comedians – any one of these are likely to get people engaged.
Let’s talk about the time that I was hired to photograph a bar mitzvah. To my surprise, the parents of the boy in question had booked contortionists as the main event entertainment. Several ladies, dressed in skin-tight costumes, appeared onstage and began warping their anatomies into various pretzel-like formations in front of these 13-year-old boys. Nobody was talking about feline fungal infections. Nobody staged an animal rights protest. Everybody’s eyes were on the entertainment, and that’s all they could talk about when the act was over. By the end of the evening, the parents and the rest of their families all had a great time – and I think those boys became men in more ways than one.
Now, this may have been an example of when entertainment goes too far – you don’t want the act to steal the spotlight from you as the bride and groom. But it is important to make everyone feel as if they haven’t been dragged away from an evening of Netflix and cheap wine for nothing.
If all else fails, you could try your luck with a hypnotist who can hopefully convince your guests that they’ve had a great time. 3, 2, 1, you’re back in the room. Couldn’t resist, could I?