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Wedding entertainment ideas

We'll help you start married life on all the right notes. Here are our top entertainment suggestions for every part of your day, from aisle to after-party.

Popular wedding entertainment ideas

Wedding bands hire music edit

Wedding bands

Hire an exceptional wedding band to fill your dancefloor and appeal to all ages.

Singers For Hire 2

Wedding singers

Wedding singers, Rat Pack style crooners, guitar vocalists and vocal groups

Soul Band Hire 2

Soul & Motown bands

Soul, Motown, funk and R&B bands, playing everything from Marvin Gaye to Beyoncé

Jazz Swing Band Hire

Jazz & swing bands

Swing, blues, dixieland or bebop – hire a jazz band for mellow background music or dancing

Dj Hire

DJs

Hire a fully self-contained DJ to keep your dancefloor packed all night

Pianist Hire

Pianists

Background pianists and singer pianists playing jazz, classical, film music and pop.

Harpist Hire

Harpists

For an elegant and relaxing ambience at drinks parties, dinners and weddings

Mix mingle 1

Mix & mingle entertainers

Impressive walkabout acts to break the ice and get your guests chatting.

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Your wedding ceremony

Use live music to create a relaxed atmosphere as guests arrive for the ceremony, then walk down the aisle or sign the register to your favourite songs. Exit to an epic anthem.

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Your drinks reception

Hire musicians to play upbeat background music at a non-intrusive volume, so that your guests can relax, chat and mingle after the ceremony.

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Your wedding meal

Get your wedding guests relaxed and talking away with live background musicians as you enjoy your wedding meal.

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The evening party

Book the perfect party band and your guests will be buzzing for days after your wedding. We have bands in all genres, from rock and pop to ceilidh and swing.

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Typical format & timings

Ceremony

When?
Prelude (before the ceremony, whilst guests take their seats): typically 30 minutes
Entrance
: choose 1 song
Signing of the register
: choose up to 3 songs
Exit
: choose 1 song

Check out our song ideas for the ceremony.

    Reception

    When?
    After the ceremony, as guests drink and mingle and the bride and groom have their photos taken.

    How long?
    Typically acts would perform 1 - 2 hours background music, with a short break.

    Tip unplugged roaming acts or string quartets can be handy for outdoor drinks receptions, as they don’t require power.

      Wedding meal

      When?
      After the reception as guests meet over dinner.

      How long?
      Typically 1 - 2 hours background music, with a short break.

      Tip – if you've already booked musicians for the evening party, ask them if they can provide a smaller, acoustic line-up for your meal (and/or reception). This will save money on travel costs for a separate act.

        Evening party

        When?
        We recommend the band start their first set anytime between 8.30 - 9.30pm, immediately after your first dance.

        How long?
        Most function bands would perform 2 x 1 hour sets of upbeat covers for dancing, with a 15-30 minute break in between.

        Tip – don't start the band too early. Guests need time for their food to digest before hitting the dancefloor. Plus, it's better when it's dark outside the band's lighting can take effect.

        Assuming your venue has a midnight curfew, a 9.30pm start would mean you can close the night with the band at around midnight.

        Read more about keeping guests entertained, as well as our top 10 wedding bands for 2021.


          Our most popular bands

          Our function bands play tunes to keep everyone on the dancefloor with hits from the 50s right through to the latest chart-toppers. Many bands also offer a laptop DJ service to keep the music going.

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          Non-musical performers

          Break the ice at your wedding and bring your guests together with a caricaturist, magician, lookalike performer, dancer, or circus act!

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          The easy way to book live wedding entertainment

          • 100s of hand-picked wedding entertainers and musicians
          • Fast customer service and an easy booking process
          • Round-the-clock support and emergency cover
          • Expert advice on booking wedding entertainment
          • Trusted brand with thousands of bookings

          Wedding song ideas

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          More wedding entertainment ideas

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          Read what other brides & grooms say

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          Your real weddings

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          Wedding entertainment booking guide

          What kind of wedding entertainment can you provide?

          We can provide a huge variety of acts for your wedding day!

          We have a varied roster of musical entertainment including party bands, jazz bands, string quartets, harpists and DJs.

          We also offer a variety of mix & mingle entertainers including caricaturists, magicians, dancers and circus performers.

          How much does wedding entertainment cost?

          Prices for mix and mingle entertainers such as magicians, caricaturists and lookalikes start from £250.

          Wedding band prices range from around £650 to upwards of £3000 for larger line-ups of up to 10 or 12 musicians.

          The lowest prices advertised on each page typically reflect the price for a local event with no travel costs, or an off-peak event on a weekday or low-season date.

          We've found wedding entertainment that we love - how do we book?

          Great news! If you would like to make a booking and you've already received a quote from us, you can email us or phone 0333 242 0560.

          We'll draw up a secure booking contract between you and the act and ask you t pay a deposit by credit or debit card to secure the booking.

          Do your wedding entertainers bring all their own equipment?

          All our acts for weddings are fully self-contained. Entertainers and performers will bring everything they need to perform their act.

          For bands, this means they'll bring their own PA sound system and lighting, which is usually suitable for most events up to around 250 guests.

          Read the act's profile page carefully for more details, or contact us if you need more information.

          Is there anything we need to provide?

          Our acts are fully self-contained with their own equipment. You'll just make sure that they have access to the performance space they need and a power supply on the day.

          They'll ideally need two separate domestic plug sockets, one either side of the performance space.

          Please also make sure your act has the food and soft drinks that they need on the day. Evening party bands will require a hot meal to keep their energy up for their performance!

          Depending on the venue, some bands will also need a parking space or a changing room. Check the act's profile for more details.

          How can we save money on our wedding entertainment?

          • If you haven't decided on your wedding date yet, think about booking a weekday or low-season wedding to get the best value rates.
          • Prioritise hiring an act from your local area, to save on travel and accommodation costs. We have wedding entertainment acts based in most major towns and cities across the UK.
          • If you'd like to book background music during the afternoon as well as the evening, check whether your evening party band can provide this too for a lower price than a standalone act. Read more about getting the most from your band.

          I'm booking a band. Can they learn our first dance?

          Have a look through the band's song list on their profile, to see if they already know your chosen first dance song.

          If not, many of our bands are happy to learn and perform a first dance request for free. Let us know and we'll check with them for you!

          If the band can’t perform your songs live, they'll be happy to play it through their PA system instead. You can send them a link to the song or give it to them on your smart phone or iPod on the day.

          Check out our most popular first dance song ideas.

          Our venue has a sound limiter - is this easy to manage?

          Most weddings bands can perform with a sound limiter set to 95dB or above. If your venue's limiter is set to a lower volume than this, we may need to recommend bands and acts who can accommodate this.

          Ideally, sound limiters can be used to set volume levels in soundcheck, and turned off for the performance to avoid damaging the band's equipment by cutting the power.

          We do have a list of sound limiter-friendly bands, who use electric drum kits to help keep their volume now.

          We're after something unique and unusual for our wedding entertainment. What can you offer?

          We have a great range of unique and unusual entertainment options.

          From alternative bands, tribute acts and modern brass party bands to circus acts, Ceilidh bands and Latin & salsa bands, there's a lot to choose from!

          Can you provide wedding performers for the daytime?

          Absolutely! Acoustic duos and wedding singers are both great choices for daytime wedding performers, or a string quartet can be a classic and romantic option for champagne receptions.

          Classical soloists such as guitarists, harpists and pianists can also be an easy way to create a romantic atmosphere during the daytime of your wedding.

          Our roster of mix & mingle entertainers include caricaturists, magicians and lookalike performers to break the ice after your vows.

          I want our wedding guests to have fun! What have you got?

          A wedding party band is the ultimate way to get all your guests on the dancefloor, having a great time on your wedding day!

          Singer waiters are a great way to make sure your wedding guests have fun on the day too, or a mix & mingle entertainer to get everyone laughing and chatting before dinner.

          What entertainment do you recommend for an outdoor wedding?

          One of our roaming bands could be perfect for an outdoor wedding, as they can mingle with your guests and don't need a stage or a power source.

          A steel band or a mariachi band also work very well outside.

          We have a range of mix and mingle entertainers such as magicians and caricaturists who can also work outdoors.

          If you'd like to book a wedding band to perform outdoors, they'll require shelter from the sun or rain, a flat performance surface and a safe source of power.

          Can you provide unexpected wedding entertainment?

          Yes! Singing waiters are the ultimate in unexpected wedding entertainment. They'll surprise your guests with a performance during dinner.

          Brass bands and other wandering acts are also a great way to surprise your partner or your guests, as they don't require any set up in the venue.


          Find wedding bands UK wide

          Function Central is the UK’s leading live wedding music and entertainment agency, bringing live music to over 1500 events a year and helping thousands of couples start married life on all the right notes. Find and book wedding bands UK wide.


          Need more help?

          Wedding entertainment comes in a bewildering array of shapes and sizes, and the amount of choice can be daunting. Give us a call on 0333 242 0560 or email info@functioncentral.co.uk for more help and advice.