One of my constant worries at a wedding ceremony is sound. Having the person in the last row not hear what is going on is unacceptable in my mind. No one should have to suffer a long silent movie.
After nearly twenty years in theatre I can say one thing. Sound technology is FM: Frigging Magic. When I set up and program lights, I turn them on and they work. Sound however is the most temperamental of electronics. Each day and situation seems different. Each time you turn on a system of microphones, amplifiers and speakers, they need tweaking.
It seems no different in theatres or wedding venues. As a general rule, I like to use a sound amplification system for any weddings with over 80 guests. Although I can project, the words “DO YOU LOVE HER?” lose some feeling. A sound system lets me speak at normal voice with proper inflections.
Some venues absolutely require a sound system. Their situation demands it. It can be the architecture of the room or the overbearing hum of the HVAC system. Outdoors is another environmental system that demands a sound system. And with the Britannia Yacht Club being by the water, even more so.
Thus it was for Genevieve and Connor’s wedding. The DJ provided me and the groom with lapel microphones. I did my usual sound test before the ceremony. All set to go, we began.
My microphone failed about 5 minutes after I started talking. As a rule actors are taught to speak loudly all the time for two reasons: 1) so the microphone can pick up your voice, and 2) never trust the sound system. I was speaking loud enough that the DJ could pick me up through the groom’s microphone and everyone heard me.
Whew – love back up plans, especially when it involve sound amplification systems.