Wedding Imagineering


By Alan Dodson, the “Wedding Wizard”

I constantly find myself coming up with new and better ways to create unique, amazing weddings.

I have for a long time, considered myself to be far more than just a DJ or MC, or even a Wedding Entertainer because in addition to these roles I am a planner, designer, choreographer, director, guide, musicologist, acoustical engineer, storyteller, and motivator.

Recently I have discovered that I am also an Imagineer. Before you cry “Disney Foul,” you should know that this word far precedes Walt Disney and his wonderful team back to 1942 when Alcoa Aluminum first used it.

Imagination + Engineering = Imagineer

“Imagineer” is a morphed word combining “Imagination” (Forming new images and sensations that are not perceived through sight, hearing, or other senses) and “Engineering” (The application of practical knowledge to build something).

Albert Einstein once wrote, “The most beautiful experience we have is imagination, it is the basic emotion which rocks the cradle of art, science and life.” The weddings I help create, are based on emotion and I use the tools of our trade to build a wonderful experience!

The Opportunity

I approach each wedding as a singularly unique opportunity to build on the love story of two unique individuals, but many more factors are put into play such as the time of year, venue, location, inside or outside, theme, purpose, and personal preferences.

All of these components play a key part in the planning, execution and outcome of the wedding for which I am preparing. Emotions must be invoked and evoked in every part of the planning and execution process. This, in turn, creates and imbeds memories that will last a lifetime, which come from a fun, unique party that was thoroughly enjoyed by my clients and their guests.

Taking tradition and the timeless ritual of marriage, melding that into a vision for the bride and groom that matches their desires and dreams is always my ultimate goal.

Anyone can use a cliché phrase and claim to help couples create “memories” or a “great reception” or “fun,” but in order to truly plan and coordinate an event that is as unique as the couple themselves, takes a great deal of time and effort as well as careful planning and execution.

The Difference Between
“Cliché” and “Timeless”

The difference between these two words and what they mean is deeply founded in how you work with your clients, primarily in the early planning stages. Often, challenges to the perfection desired are presented by venues and other vendors that do not share the same enthusiasm that is vested in professionals like myself and my wife, Sally, who is a wedding planner and coordinator.

Recently, I was introduced to one of Sally’s clients as a potential entertainment client. We met at a beautiful turn-of-the century local venue that I had not had not visited before. As we walked the grounds and looked at the area where the ceremony and reception were going to occur, it became very clear to me that “we do it this way” was a common occurrence. I could also see, by the body language of the client that “same old, same old” was not what she was seeking for her special day.

I began to make a suggestions about the relocation of the reception tent, showing the advantages of doing so, moving the food service to a far more accessible point, and realigning the ceremony focal point to take advantage of beautiful landscaping and a mountain view that would be captured by the photographer.

I also demonstrated how the bridal party should enter, pause and proceed for maximum emphasis. I recommended utilization of a mill stone table as the place to do the guest book and gift table as the guests arrived and later convert it to the cake table.

Use the Imagination of Your Prospect

To bring these ideas clearly into the brides mind, I asked her to visualize the recommendations that I made and I could see the happy emotions being transmitted by her facial expressions and by the sparkle in her eyes.

We went on to continue this process inside the facility as we completed the tour. At the end of this 90-minute consultation, an entirely different arrangement of all of the key components of the wedding day were finalized.

The bride was bubbling with excitement and anticipation. Needless to say I was booked for the wedding because I had set the tone and script for what will be one of the most important and memorable days of the bride’s life and she was thrilled.

Engineer, imagine, and love your clients. The results can be amazing!

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