Best Man's Speech

Best Man's Speech! Me? you must be joking.......your best friend has done it - he's getting married and he's asked you to be his best man. Brilliant ...... but what about the best man's speech?

Don't let it spoil your day... giving a speech can be fun.

Don't get carried away

You may have some wonderfully embarrassing stories you would love to tell but remember his parents and grandparents and new wife are all listening so make it fun and make fun of him but don't go too far!

Don't speak too fast

Most people talk much too quickly when giving a best man's speech, so the first thing to do is slow down. It may feel painfully slow to you but you must give the guests listening a chance to take in what you're saying.

There are two easy ways to do this.

First, just make sure that you open your mouth a little wider than you do in usual conversation. This makes it a lot easier for the sound to come out and means that you speak just a fraction slower.

Another foolproof way of slowing down only works when you are reading your speech - which I would highly reccommend. There's enough to remember as Best Man  without having to worry about words of a speech! Anyway - everytime you come to a fullstop or comma in your speech, just say 'fullstop' or 'comma' to yourself - easy and anyone can do it!

Try it now - just pick up a magazine or book that happens to be on the desk next to the computer. Now read aloud a couple of sentences, remembering to say the 'comma' or 'fullstop' to yourself. Easy!

Another way to slow down is to practise these exercises which will help you to open your mouth correctly. 

Your Best Man Suit

Strangely enough what you wear can effect how you speak. Your suit may feel a bit tight or you might feel too hot, it might be a style you'd never, ever wear in your ordinary life. Learning how to deliver your best man's speech when you feel self conscious about your wedding suit is possible. Even best men who wear an ordinary everyday suit can feel uncomfortable.

So if possible try to practice your speech at least once dressed in your wedding attire or at least in something very similar.

Read the speech

 I would always recommend reading yourbest man's speech. This has two advantages.

First, you don't need to spend sleepless nights worrying about remembering your lines.

Secondly, it gives you something to do with your hands while you talk.

Always underline the first sentence and final sentence of your speech along with any other important words. When you're reading your bridesmaid speech try to look up at the guests when you get to the underlined parts. One last tip - whether you write (or print) your speech on cards or on paper, only write on one side. You can guarantee that if you write on both sides, you'll read the wrong side when you're speaking!

Ends of words are important

If you've got some elderly people at the reception make extra sure that you sound the last consonant in every word. If you don't emphasize the last consonant of a word the people sitting at the back and those with hearing problems will find it almost impossible to distinguish between words.

For example, the difference between rum, run and rub is only the last letter. If your audience can't hear the last sound all they will hear is 'ru..'. They will have to guess which word you have spoken.

Exercises to practise at home can be found here. Taking the time to finish these words will also slow your speech down.

Can I help you with your Best man's speech?

If you would like help enrol on one or more of my online courses or book a skype lesson with me.

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This course will teach you how to speak clearly and demonstates how to make what you say sound interesting. It is very much like the first lesson I would teach you face to face but you have the added advantage that you can watch it over and over again. How to speak clearly and confidently will teach you how to speak  so that you will find making presentations, talking to people at work or school much easier and less stressful.

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This course takes you through vowel and consonant sounds, I explain how each sound is made, how it should sound and then there is an exercise for each sound. Each letter has it's own lesson so you can jump around and pick on the sounds you  need to improve.

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What people say.....

You are a "Guru" (teacher) in the true sense of the word, as you impart and share your knowledge in totality, and I'm lucky to have you as a teacher. Kavita.

I’m lucky enough to have had some elocution classes with Serena face-to-face some years ago in Bournemouth. Having English as a second language I used Serena’s knowledge and professionalism to help me, at first, to understand that an accent can be a part of your character and this gives your speech some flavour. The important bit is to understand and learn how to speak every single word clearly, with a good pace, with high and lows which make your speech interesting. It was enlightening, and now I have found online all those wonderful classes with a genuine English lady. This is priceless. Thank you Serena!

I would like to thank you for helping me have confidence in my speech today. It is because of you I did much better than I have before when presenting as speech. I was a little shaky, but other than that my voice sounded fine and I pronounced every word slowly and with emphasis on those that I wanted people to hear! Elections are tomorrow. Without you, this would not have happened! You are an inspiration! Thank you so much, Joe from New York

At the end of last term my son went for head boy and delivered an amazing speech, something we never imagined he would put himself forward for. Many of the teachers complimented him and were taken aback by his confidence and presence, he buzzed with excitement for days afterwards and said he loved speaking in public. It is through all your hard work that he has this turn around in his approach to speaking and for this we will be forever grateful. Elaine