Online Public Speaking

Training & Practice

Theme and Tone

Let’s discuss theme and tone now. They’re different but closely related.

Tone is the feeling you convey and the style you use, whether it be humor, story telling, sweet, or sensitive, sometimes called the tear jerker. Theme is basically the story you tell. It can be love, laughter, history, a unique insight, and so on.  You can choose your theme by choosing your tone first, or vice versa.

To figure this out, decide whether you want the audience, including the bride and groom, to laugh, cry, say “wow, I didn’t think of that”, take a walk down memory lane, or any combination of those. 

We prefer including humor whenever possible. Many Maid of Honor speeches are indeed funny. The audience enjoys it, it’s a happy event, and tension that led up to the “big day” is wearing off, so your audience is primed to have a good time. If you’re comfortable with using humor and feel it’s the right group for it, feel free to choose that as your overall tone.

If humor isn’t your style and being serious is, you can choose a theme of looking back on historical events in the life of the couple, and how you, the other members of the wedding party, their families and other audience members played a role in the bride and groom getting together. The audience always appreciates some perspective. If you’re full of deep ideas that will blow everyone’s mind, that works too.

If you’re still not sure, you can just be…nice.  Generosity of spirit is always welcome at events like this if you prefer to choose some very safe, middle of the road language and themes.  Taking a chance with humor, historical insight or super-profound ideas is not for everyone, but everyone can give a compelling, well-received, easily understood speech that will be remembered with fondness and gratitude.  

Next it’s time to choose what to say. And don’t be surprised if, while you’re writing your speech, you find a tone or theme that you weren’t expecting.  Go with it.  Explore the options.  Just ensure you finalize your tone and theme well before the big day.