Planning Your Rehearsal

Seven Tips for Your Rehearsal


  1. DO have a rehearsal! Even if it’s a walk through an hour or so before the ceremony. You want to enjoy your ceremony and look relaxed, as do the members of your wedding party. Practicing the choreography relieves jitters and enables participants to feel comfortable in their role. It may cost a little more but it’s worth it. Ask your officiant or wedding coordinator if the rehearsal is included in the fee.
  2. If possible, avoid the 24 hour marathon by scheduling your rehearsal two days prior to the wedding day. Tempers flare when too many activities are scheduled back to back. Give yourself and your wedding party time to breathe, enjoy visiting and relax.
  3. Plan twice the amount of time for the rehearsal as for the ceremony. The rehearsal is a time to tie up loose ends and tend to details of the ceremony. Allow enough time to run through the ceremony twice. Additional time may be needed if children or pets are in the party, or if your wedding party is large.
  4. Practice with your music at the rehearsal. Don’t leave any of the technical side of the ceremony to the last minute. Check batteries, cords and outlets. If the music is taped, set the volume louder than you think necessary considering that on the wedding day the room will be filled with people. If you have hired a DJ or Chamber ensemble, ask them to attend the rehearsal. Vocal soloists singing during the ceremony should perform their piece once at the rehearsal.
  5. Plan for the unexpected member of the family who assumes that they are part of the wedding party and who expects to be escorted to their place as part of the processional. Avoid an awkward moment by having someone waiting in the wings to step forward as an escort, as if it had been planned. Be sure to let your officiant and/or coordinator know of the addition to the party.
  6. Ask your bridesmaids and matrons to wear the shoes that they will be wearing for the wedding. Walking through wet grass, gravel or up and down stairs in spiked heels is an art form.
  7. Keep the rehearsal light hearted. Have fun bouquets for the bridesmaids. Use mood rings to practice the ring ceremony.

With your wedding just hours away, the rehearsal is your top priority. Be firm with your wedding party regarding the time you expect them to arrive at the venue (at least 15 minutes prior to the rehearsal start time.) Remember that out of towners may need extra time to find the venue. A well run rehearsal is the foundation for a good night’s sleep!  You deserve it!

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