They should have arranged for a Microphone for their Marriage Ceremony!

Posted by on Oct 10, 2013 in Venues, Weddings, Weddings and technology | 0 comments

They should have arranged for a  Microphone for their Marriage Ceremony!
Maybe you’ve had this experience.  You are a guest at an outdoor wedding.  It’s in a vineyard–with rolling hills as a backdrop-absolutely beautiful!   You are sitting on a chair several rows back.   Then, the officiant starts speaking.  You turn to your companion/escort/significant other and you whisper, “I can’t hear a thing!”  You cup your hand around an ear;  Your brows furrow.  You mutter to yourself, “They should have arranged for a microphone for their Marriage Ceremony!!
A  sound system might be necessary for your wedding, if it's outside

A sound system might be necessary for your marriage ceremony, if it’s outside

I have been officiating at weddings long enough now that I have established a rule.  More than an 80 people at your outdoor wedding?  Better get a microphone and speakers.  No, I don’t have these myself.  I did my research, I really did.  I priced the equipment.  It’s expensive.  But that isn’t the main reason I didn’t buy the equipment.  The main reason is that each wedding venue is different.  It is impossible to buy a system that meets all situations.  If your wedding is out in a vineyard somewhere, away from electrical outlets, you’re going to need a generator.  You want to attach your ipod to the sound system—well, you’re going to need special equipment.  You want Aunt Minnie or Uncle Tyron to read something at your wedding—they may need one or more microphones, in addition to the one that your officiant (me) will be using.  That is why I have not bothered to invest in a sound system.  I just can’t cover all needs. Then there is the problem with hauling the equipment in my small car, and learning more about sound equipment than I do now….

HOWEVER!  However,  I can direct you to a rental company that does have sound systems to rent.  If you plan on having a dj for your reception and if the reception is also where the wedding will take place, then chances are, your dj will have the equipment you need for the wedding.  Bless them.

Rule of Thumb:  You will need a Mic if your marriage ceremony is outside and you have 80 or more guests.

UVA chapel--not the greatest, acoustically speaking!

UVA chapel–not the greatest, acoustically speaking!

Indoor weddings are a different story. I have been a preacher for fifteen years and my voice easily carries to the back pews of many, I’d say most sanctuaries.  The one exception is the Chapel at UVA.  Turns out that space is long and narrow and the acoustics are far less than ideal.  The Chapel has a sound system that can (and should) be rented for weddings of more than say, 50 guests.

Finally, it may do you well to consider sound when choosing the exact spot for your wedding ceremony.  Is there a fountain nearby?  The sound of water trickling down pretty rocks can be soothing, in some situations, but when your guests are trying to to listen to listen to you exchange vows, the sound can be distracting. Think about radio noise, too.  I officiated at an elopement several weeks ago.    We were at Carter’s Mountain.  It was impromptu—we just showed up at 9 a.m. (but I had permission) —a gorgeous view, but midway through the service some nearby visitor turned on a radio.  I know, I know.  We were using the place for free.  But STILL.  Grumble, grumble.
So that is the skinny on microphones.  One more thing to think about as you plan your wedding.  You’ll be

Happy couple at elopement on Carter's Mountain

Happy couple at elopement on Carter’s Mountain

glad you did! 

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