I DJ’ed a wedding last night at the fabulous Pembroke Lodge in Richmond, a venue that I’ve worked at scores of times over the past decade or so. At the end of the night as I was packing up I was chatting with the manager and we were discussing Weddings, recent events etc.
He mentioned to me that he’d seen an increase in bookings where the couple hadn’t booked a DJ but instead had used an iPod to play the music. I asked him how these events had gone and his reply was he felt that virtually every couple probably regretted doing so by the end of the night, because at every single event the guests left far earlier than when there was a DJ or band, and at many of these iPod disco’s, that there were only a handful of people by the end of the night, and he felt it was because there was a marked lack in atmosphere compared to when there was professional entertainment.
I guess with the state of the economy it’s a route that more couples will explore and unless they’ve seen first hand the results they may well just presume that they can create a playlist with songs they like and that everyone will dance, and it’s a shame that they may well discover the hard way that it actually takes a lot of skill to maintain a busy dancefloor at a wedding and keep all the different age groups and music tastes happy throughout the night.
If those couples that chose the iDisco route had instead of cutting the budget for entertainment, spent less on say the flowers, or less on the cake, or less on the chair covers; how much different would the result have been. How many of the guests would really be that perturbed if there weren’t quite as many flowers as originally planned, or if there were only 3 courses instead of 4 served for the meal, or if there was a slightly inferior quality chair cover on their seats. It’s unlikely that many of those things would have made the guests leave early or effected the atmosphere on the night that greatly. But not having entertainment, or just as bad, not having good entertainment, can make what was a a good day fizzle out instead of ending with a bang, and thus instead of a fantastic wedding celebration, it became a very expensive dinner party!