How to Write a Rehearsal Dinner Speech

Three Methods:Sample SpeechesWriting Your Own SpeechDelivering Your Speech

Understanding how to write a rehearsal dinner speech can transform a nerve-wracking process into a fun and entertaining event.

Sample Speeches

Sample Dinner Host Speech

Sample Maid of Honor Speech

Method 1
Writing Your Own Speech

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    Prepare your speech well in advance. Few people can prepare elegant remarks when they've scribbled a speech onto a dinner napkin. Bring an index card or a piece of paper containing an outline of what you'd like to say. Alternatively, you can prepare an outline on your tablet or smartphone.
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    Include a sentence to introduce yourself. While most present at the dinner may know you, not everyone will. Also, explain your relationship to the bride and groom in your introduction.
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    Express appreciation. Let the audience know that you are pleased to have been asked to make a speech.
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    Be sensitive to your audience. For example, do not provide inappropriate details from the bachelor party while the bride is present. Make sure that your remarks are appropriate for all wedding guests to hear.
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    Create a catchy opening. Provide a funny story about how the bride and groom met or a quote from the bride and groom's favorite song.
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    Choose final words that will leave an impression. A memorable quote about the beauty of marriage is always a good choice for an ending to your speech. You can use a variety of resources both online and in the bookstore to find an appropriate quote.

Method 2
Delivering Your Speech

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    Practice your speech before delivering it publicly. Track your time to make sure that your speech isn't too long-winded.
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    Choose the right moment to present your speech. One appropriate choice would be to deliver your speech between dinner courses.
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    Speak slowly and clearly. Also, speak loudly so that everyone in the audience can understand the words that you've worked so hard to prepare.
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    Allow yourself to become emotional if you feel overwhelmed during the course of your speech. A speech that sounds flat and robotic isn't enjoyable and doesn't sound heartfelt.


  • Consider the sense of humor of the bride and groom before using some of the darker or wittier quotations regarding marriage such as those below. You don't want your speech to be remembered as hurtful.
    • Marriage, n. The state or condition of a community consisting of a master, a mistress, and two slaves, making in all, two. – Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary," 1911
    • Marriage is a great institution, but I'm not ready for an institution. – Mae West
    • Love is blind -- marriage is the eye-opener. – Pauline Thomason
    • I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage. They've experienced pain and bought jewelry. – Rita Rudner
    • Politics doesn't make strange bedfellows, marriage does. – Groucho Marx
    • To love is to suffer. To avoid suffering one must not love. But then one suffers from not loving. Therefore, to love is to suffer; not to love is to suffer; to suffer is to suffer. To be happy is to love. To be happy, then, is to suffer, but suffering makes one unhappy. Therefore, to be happy one must love or love to suffer or suffer from too much happiness. – Woody Allen
  • Pick a memorable quote to use during your speech. Below are some examples of quotations you might consider including:
    • One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: That word is love. – Sophocles
    • To keep your marriage brimming, with love in the wedding cup, whenever you're wrong, admit it; whenever you're right, shut up. – Ogden Nash
    • A good marriage is at least 80 percent good luck in finding the right person at the right time. The rest is trust. – Nanette Newman
    • The absolute yearning of one human body for another particular body and its indifference to substitutes is one of life's major mysteries. – Iris Murdoch
    • Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illumines it. – Martin Luther King, Jr.
    • Immature love says: "I love you because I need you." Mature love says: "I need you because I love you." – Erich Fromm
    • Love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking outward together in the same direction. – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
    • A good marriage is like a casserole, only those responsible for it really know what goes in it. – Anonymous
    • Laughter is the shortest distance between two people. – Victor Borge
    • Happiness is not having what you want, but wanting what you have. – Rabbi H. Schachtel
    • And now here is my secret, a very simple secret; it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye. – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
    • Marriage is the golden ring in a chain whose beginning is a glance and whose ending is Eternity. – Kahlil Gibran
    • Success in marriage does not come merely through finding the right mate, but through being the right mate. – Barnett Brickner
    • There is no more lovely, friendly, and charming relationship, communion, or company than a good marriage. – Martin Luther
    • A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person. – Mignon McLaughlin
    • Marriage should be a duet – when one sings, the other claps. – Joe Murray
    • The great secret of successful marriage is to treat all disasters as incidents and none of the incidents as disasters. – Sir Harold George Nicolson
    • Love is the life-spring of our existence. The more love you give, the happier you feel and the more love you will have within you to give. – Susan L. Taylor
    • Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. – Kahlil Gibran


  • Keep your speech short. A speech that is too long will lose the attention of the audience quickly.
  • Drinking before giving a toast can lead to bad results and embarrassment on all sides. Make sure that you delay intoxication until you've completed your speech.

Things You'll Need

  • An outline of your speech on a piece of paper, an index card, a tablet or a smartphone.
  • A memorable quotation about marriage

Article Info

Categories: Speechwriting | Wedding Planning