Ready to raise your glass to word-perfect wedding speeches? Do you want the whole room to be roaring with laughter or holding back happy tears? One thing’s for certain: you don’t want your speeches to be a flop. Take inspiration from five real speeches to make your guests laugh. If these couples can nail their wedding speeches, you can do too.
5 Real Speeches to Make Your Guests Laugh
Surprise songs from the best men
Even though they opted for a laid-back wedding, Alexa and Jamie were happy to have the traditional speeches too. The best men and a good friend ensured that tradition went out of the window, however, when they then became a fantastic band and sang a couple of hilarious songs about Jamie and Alexa.
Furthermore, they had only practised once or twice in the back of a van prior to the wedding. The whole party loved the thoughtful chorus.
Video messages and perfect poetry
When Sally and Martin married, the bride’s mother read a wedding-related poem, ‘He’s Not Perfect’ by Bob Marley, as a speech.
“She read it out to me in the morning while I was getting ready and had the whole party in tears. I asked her to read it again before the speeches!”
Sally’s brother Jack couldn’t make the big day, so as a surprise he recorded Mcfly’s ‘It’s All About You’.
“A projector displayed his singing, which was accompanied by photographs of me and Martin from over the years,” remembers Sally.
“I’d managed to hold back the tears all day until this point!”
For Jaime and Blake, the speeches kicked off with Jaime’s mum and brother doing a joint speech with loving stories and childhood memories. Blake gave a heartfelt speech.
“He left no one out and really honoured me and our families,” smiles Jaime.
“I spoke last, I felt it was important to say thank you to everyone that made the day so perfect for us.
“Our wedding day also fell on the same day that we held my dad’s memorial service eight years ago, under those same flat-grown trees on the farm. It was a great way to honour his memory and bring him alive on our big day.”
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Prizegivings, heartfelt words and howling laughter
A twist on tradition, Jess decided to give a short speech herself, thanking the bridesmaids, best men and her parents. In place of wedding favours this fun loving couple arranged a duck bobbing competition. Jess announced the winners and gave out the prizes during her speech, before the men the stepped in with their own.
“Jordy did an incredible speech that was very emotional and heartfelt, I felt so proud of him. My dad did a great job of making everyone laugh and cry and Matt, Jordan’s best man, had the whole room howling with laughter to finish!”
Silly hats and embarrassing photos
Finally, the two best men at Natalie and Kieth’s wedding brought props along to their speech.
“The speeches were very entertaining, involving everyone in the room putting on silly hats that they had secretly brought with them.
“There were embarrassing photos of us as children and a very emotional speech from Keith,” says Natalie.
The two best men finished with a joint speech, including funny anecdotes with lots of references to Keith’s love of useless information and random facts too.
The best man speech is usually the most eagerly awaited of all the wedding speeches – so if you’ve been tasked with writing a funny best man speech, here’s some best man speech examples, template ideas and tips on how to structure, write and deliver a knockout best man speech…
The best man’s speech outline and template – what to include in your best man speech…
Have a killer opening line and introduce yourself as the best man
Thank the other speakers (the father-of-the-bride, the groom etc)
Make a joke about the groom or tell a short story about the groom thats funny
Compliment the bride
Congratulate the happy couple
Read messages from guests who couldn’t make it, if there are any
Speak about love, quote a few famous lines or a poem
Propose a toast to the bride and groom
Best man speech ideas and structure
Best man speech opening lines
First and foremost, get everyone’s attention and set an amusing tone for your best man speech with a comical opening line or icebreaker – this could be something funny about your own ordeal in the run-up to this speech, or a short anecdote about the groom, who traditionally would have spoken just before you.
Introduce yourself as the best man
Obviously the bride and groom know who you are but introduce yourself for those who don’t. This is a great opportunity to give some insight into what it’s like to be the best man, how it’s an honour and pay some compliments to the bride and the bridesmaids. Anything about how beautiful they look is a sure fire way to set the bride and her family at ease.
Best man speech jokes
Next, focus unashamedly on the groom and funnies. You’ll be talking about your relationship with the groom, but remember to keep your best man speech about the groom and not you, as it’s his wedding day and the focus should always be on him.
Speaking about the groom is the main part of your best man speech so it’s a great chance to build up the comedy value and regale the audience with funny anecdotes and amusing asides about the groom. As well as the best man speech jokes, remember to throw in some lines about what a great guy he is as well…
The wedding day
Once you’ve exhausted all your jokes and comedy material about you and the groom, you’ll want to move onto the wedding day itself. Highlight the effort that’s gone into the day and make sure you pay particular attention to the contribution of the bride’s parents – after all there’s a decent chance they paid for it!
Focus on the bride
Now turn your attention to the bride. Obviously, you’re not going to start poking fun at her as the last thing you want to do is upset or embarrass her on her big day. Instead, now is the time to say how beautiful she looks and how lucky the groom is to have found her.
Focus on the couple
It may be the best man’s job to make everyone laugh but you’ll need to have some serious notes to your speech as well. Now is the time to talk about how amazing the bride and groom are as a couple and how happy everyone is to see them together.
Here you might want to talk about love in general or if you have a memory about the groom’s first impression of the bride, that’s likely to make the audience cry, then this is the time!
The best man’s toast
The ending of the best man speech is where you summarise everything that you’ve covered. This is a great time to refer back to some earlier jokes for a few more laughs and you may want to leave your best jokes until now to ensure your speech ends on a happy note.
Feel free to offer some advice to the happy couple, wish them all the best and ask the wedding guests to join you in raising a glass to the bride and groom…
Best man speech example
How to make your best man speech funny
Don’t pressure yourself to transform into a stand-up comic overnight. The biggest mistake a best man can make with his speech is to imitate a favourite comedian or style the speech to what the thinks will make the wedding guests laugh.
Steer clear on best man one-liners unless of course you have a one-liner up your shirt sleeve that is utterly hilarious in the context of your speech – one-liners are just cringe otherwise.
Just deliver your best man speech from the heart about real experiences with the groom and your comedic moments will evolve and shine through naturally.
If you’re going for a funny best man speech, just ensure you deliver that punch line with clarity and don’t pre-empt the laughter in your head as this always takes the edge off any big reveal. It will just be awkward if you laugh at your own jokes before the audience!
In general, a best man speech should be kept to about five minutes or less. This is enough time to say something funny as well as meaningful but not so long that your audience gets antsy. But of course, you also should tailor your best man speech length to the event.
Best man speech tips
Professional speechwriter and founder of Great Speech Writing, Lawrence Bernstein, shares his tips on how to deliver a knock-out best man speech…
Remember your audience
Don’t write your speech for the boys on the stag do. Whilst some of your mates may be in stitches by you recounting the story of the Groom’s eyebrow being shaved off as he slept in a Majorcan golf buggy dressed in his Spider Man outfit, the rest of the guests are unlikely to be amused and you won’t get the laughs you’re hoping for.
When you’re thinking about what to put in your speech, it’s best to keep your material as universal as possible.
Avoid stand-alone jokes
This may sound odd; after all, this is the one speech where people expect jokes. But punch lines that fall flat can be a nightmare for any speaker, and there are plenty of ways to make people laugh without one.
Keep it clean(ish)
Avoid crude jokes, mentions of ex-girlfriends, anything that might insult guests and in particular the Bride!
Best man speeches have a reputation for being a bit saucy, but it’s easy to go too far. Don’t judge a potential story or joke on whether you find it funny, but on whether your audience will be offended by it.
Pick a best man speech theme
Anecdotes and observations are key elements of many speeches, but they don’t always link together naturally. Choosing a theme that ties everything together can help it flow and an original and amusing theme is often the difference between a decent speech and a great one.
Keep yourself separate
It’s tempting to focus your speech on your own relationship with the Groom. But if you labour the point too heavily, it can start to sound like narcissism and be very boring for everyone else.
Keep the best man speech short
I strongly recommend you limit specific anecdotes to a maximum of two or three sentences each. Keeping the best man speech short and snappy will hold people’s attention, and if a story isn’t working, you can move swiftly on.
These father of the bride speeches are sure to bring a tear to the eye, for all the right reasons…
How to Write a Flawless Father of the Bride Speech
Traditionally, at the reception, the bride’s father is the first one to make a speech to the wedding guests. The father of the bride is usually seen as a bit of a warm-up act, and something to be endured rather than enjoyed. However, with a little effort you can make sure your moment in the spotlight is something to be remembered.
What to Include in Your Father of the Bride Speech
Whether it’s short and sweet or a moment to enjoy the spotlight, your father of the speech needs to contain some basic elements. That’s if it is to be in keeping with tradition. Here’s a simple father of the bride speech template to follow…
Father of the Bride Speech Template
You need to introduce yourself, but it doesn’t have to be reminiscent of an AA meeting. Tell them your name and maybe crack a small joke to make yourself feel relaxed.
Make a formal welcome to everyone, and thank them for coming. Try to also mention the bride’s mother and the groom’s parents too.
She’s made you pay for it and now’s your chance to get a little of your own back on her. Recall a funny anecdote or simply tell her how proud you are of the woman she’s become. This is her big day, so say something memorable and touching.
Formally welcome the groom to your family. You can mention how you felt about him when you first met him, or a moment when you’ve been particularly glad he’s around. Try to be positive about the future and moving forward with him as a family member.
As the elder speaker at the wedding, you should impart some of your wisdom to the happy couple. This could be about maintaining a healthy marriage or living a happy life. This is also a good place to throw in some jokes, however, err on the side of tasteful. You don’t want to upset anyone.
Finish up by asking everyone to stand and raise a glass to the happy couple. The best man will do something similar at the end of his speech too, but it’s the traditional way to close yours.
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Tips for Making Your Father of the Bride Speech Funny
The father of the bride might be a gentleman, but that doesn’t mean your speech has to be dull. Here are some top tips to make it as enjoyable as possible for everyone involved.
Timing is everything
Fathers of the bride have been known to drone on for some time. However, to keep things fun, engaging aim for a speech that lasts around six to seven minutes. Also read your speech through at your normal speaking pace to gauge how long this really is.
Keep it clean
Jokes are a great way to break the ice and loosen up the crowd. However, don’t be too focused on being funny. You’re the elder statesman of the speakers today, so you can afford to be a bit more conservative with your words.
That doesn’t mean you have to be dull though. A few jibes at the expense of the wedding or your daughter’s love of spending are fine, just don’t cut too close to the bone. Leave it to the best man to really roast up the groom, and focus on welcoming your new son-in-law to the family.
Hold on to your emotions
This is such a big occasion for you and all your family, it can be easy to get caught up in the emotion of it all. Do you best to keep things light and happy, as nobody likes to see a grown man in tears. If there are some things you would like to say to your daughter, have a quiet word with her before you walk the aisle.
The last word
Ask any public speaker what their biggest fear is and they’ll often say it’s losing their place. Fumbling over your words and getting lost is nothing to be ashamed of, provided you can make a recovery.
Take your speech on cue cards with bullet-pointed reminders of what you want to talk about. This will give you a more natural delivery and will save you fluttering to find your place.
If you do get stuck, use a moment to clear your throat, take a drink of water or give your daughter a kiss. These moments might seem a lifetime to you but will feel like a natural pause to your audience.
This will also give you the breathing space you need to get things back on track. Take your time, don’t panic and try to enjoy your moment of fame.