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best man south asian speech

South Asian Best Man Speech

South Asian Best Man Speech

Wedding speeches are fast becoming an expectation at South Asian weddings - a moment guests remember years into the future. The best man has the privilege of offering the biggest laughs of the night. Let’s help you write that masterpiece...

(*Of course, if you’re looking for more than ‘advice’, check out all the different ways the Speechy team can help you write & deliver a great speech. Or check out our new AI-powered team member, SpeechyAI.)

south asian wedding speeches family help write

So, how do you ensure your speech is the best best man speech possible?

To stop you from scratching that urge to Google ‘wedding jokes’, Speechy’s Shai Hussain (BBC Comedy Room alumnus) is here to help you write a genuinely unique and very witty wedding speech.

(SPEECH) SIZE MATTERS

It’s always best to keep it short and sweet rather than long and draggy, especially if there’s a long list of speakers. If your speech is verging into a running time close to Lagaan, you know you’ve gone too far.

A traditional best man speech shouldn’t be more than ten minutes, but as we know, at South Asia weddings we like to go BIG with everything – so if there’s elaborate staging of the speeches planned then you may have a bit more leniency – take your cue from the groom.

We’d still recommend a word count of between 1,000 and 1,600 MAX! 1,300 is generally the sweet spot.

Obviously, you’re unlikely to have control over where you’re wedged in the speech line up but it’s common to see the best man speak somewhere in the middle, after the ammis and papas open the floor, and before the dulhan and dulhaniya close it.

Wherever you’re positioned (and let’s hope it’s next to the fit one you’ve got your eye on), your best man speech will remain the comedy centerpiece of the evening. No pressure.

PREPARATION

It may seem like a dubious honour to be chosen as best man, but it’s an honour nevertheless. Consequently, you need to put some work into the role and take the need to be funny seriously. 

It’s likely you and the groom have been through a lot together, regardless of how long you’ve known each other. There’s a reason he chose you as his best man and this is your opportunity to prove that he made the right choice and to deliver an unforgettable speech that gives a rapid and entertaining assessment of the groom as you know him to be.

The best way to start is to just brainstorm everything you’ve been through together from the moment you first met to the ‘family-friendly’ parts of the stag getaway.

GET HIS OTHER MATES INVOLVED

Ask for their anecdotes, and if the groom’s partner isn’t giving a speech, maybe get some comedy lines from them too about the reality of dating your mate.

As well as the anecdotes, have a good look at the man himself. Identify his unusual mannerisms, his quirky habits, and anything that makes him ‘him’. What do his friends and family know him for? Is it his Dev Anand impressions, his obsession with cricket, or his ability to eat three kathi rolls in a row once the bars close? 

Of course, as well as his questionable traits, you need to think carefully about his good ones.

Avoid generic compliments like ‘he’s a great friend who has been by my side whenever I’ve needed him’. If the line could be inserted into another best man’s speech then, quite simply, it’s a cliché.

Best man speech

YOUR SPEECH STRUCTURE

Introduce yourself and how you know the groom.

Aim to get a laugh within the first 20 seconds. That way, you immediately show the guests they’re in safe hands and you’ll find yourself relaxing too.

There ar no major ‘to dos’ with the best man speech but you may feel it polite to thank your hosts or the parents at some point within the speech, just to keep on the right side of nani.

The basic structure is:

  • Initial 5% – Introduce yourself to the audience, explain how you know the groom – make it funny
  • 70% of the speech should be spent affectionately teasing the groom
  • The final 25% should be sincere, talking about how much you respect the groom and what a great guy he is, as well as, and this is important, how lucky he is to have met his spouse
  • Toast the happy couple

TEASING THE GROOM

Although we previously stated that your speech should be the comedy centrepiece of the evening, if comedy isn’t your forte, don’t panic.

We’ve written a dedicated blog on How To Make Your Wedding Speech Funny which you can check out. The big thing is… Avoid. Googled. Gags. At. All. Costs.

No matter how desperate you get, just don’t.

Yes, speeches may still be relatively novel on the South Asian Wedding scene, but trust us, we’ve all heard those awful opening lines about the best man accepting bribes and the wedding cake being in tiers.

Cringe. 1990 wants its jokes back.

There’s a straightforward trick to being funny and simply ‘it’s funny because it’s true’. Find the comedy in the reality of life. Let’s face it, most blokes do enough daft things to make them ridiculous.

Start with parts that may be familiar to the guests (“Oh that’s such a Riz thing to do!”), before moving on to aspects they may have never got to see (though remember to keep it PG and suitable for both old and young ears!).

With sentiment or comedy, it becomes more powerful the more specific you are. Avoid using too many adjectives and instead, illustrate his characteristics with real-life anecdotes. So, rather than saying he has terrible taste in music, explain that he still listens to Bombay Vikings on repeat.

If you’re still feeling uninspired, or feel you need to inject a bit of extra wit into your speech, a legitimate trick can be using quotes from people funnier than yourself. Whether it’s a Shah Rukh Khan line like “Pyar dosti hain, love is friendship!” or a line from Homer Simpson like “To the untrained eye, I’m eating an orange. But to the eye that has brains, I’m making a point about marriage” – as long as you quote your source, you can’t be accused of plagiarism! Check out more best men quotes

south asian wedding speeches

BE REMEMBERED FOR THE RIGHT REASONS

Of course, with any best man speech, you need to be conscious of the demographic of the wedding guests and tone your material accordingly. With a big old Asian style bash, you have half of humanity to consider so do not go too ‘edgy’. If in doubt, don’t.

Keep your innuendo mild at most. The groom and your uni classmates may love the naughty stuff but the bride and her parents may gape in horror.

THE NICE BIT

When it comes to paying tribute to the groom – add in some real-life examples of special moments you’ve shared. Recount the times he’s really been there for you and the massive difference he’s made in your life. Leave the testosterone aside and let all those pent-up feelings flow!

And when you’re talking about the bride, make sure you say (a lot) more than she’s simply beautiful. Yes, she has a personality! And if you don’t know it well enough, find out about her so it sounds like you do!

south asian best man speech

EDITING

Once you’ve written your first draft, try to cut it in half. Seriously!

Once you get started, you may feel like you have so much to say – but save some material for the gol gap stand later!

Remember, speeches are better when they’re punchy and editing is a skill. It’s So, once you’ve crafted the first draft, go back, rip it to shreds, and get rid of that inevitable waffle you’ll find lurking in there.

Leave them wanting more, not heckling you off the mic!

DELIVERING YOUR SPEECH

A great speech can be lost if it isn’t delivered well. And, presenting funny material is a skill.

Luckily we’ve written you a blog to help you Deliver Like A Pro. Have a read and get rehearsing.

On the day, remember to smile and leave a pause where you expect laughter. We guarantee it will come (especially if nani has already started drinking her Champagne).

The Speechwriting Experts

The Speechy team are TV-trained scriptwriters/comedians by trade & we’ve helped 1,000s of speakers around the world deliver their dream speech.

Our advice has been quoted everywhere from The New York Times to Grazia and from Forbes to The Observer. Our founder has also featured on the BBC Sounds’ Best Men podcast with Jason Manford and written ‘The Modern Couple’s Guide to Wedding Speeches’, published by Little, Brown.

Heidi and the Speechy Team

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We’re rated ‘Excellent' on Trustpilot for a reason...

''I had an unbelievable experience working with Speechy. From the moment I got in touch with them I felt supported and come the day of my best mans speech, it went down a storm with a standing ovation.''
''Speechy deserves more than 5 stars. (They) produced a factual, funny Mother of the Bride speech with just the right amount of emotion..... it was ingenious. Thank you so much for the wonderful & priceless memory of having delivered my speech at my daughter’s wedding and nailed it ... and got a standing ovation too. My children were very proud of me, including my new son-in-law! ''
''These Guys are tremendous! One main point is that its not their speech - its yours! This is because it is based totally around what you would like to say, but its the spin that Speechy puts on it, that is the magical bit... Ordinary words become a hilariously entertaining event. There were giggles, applauds, laughs, tears, cheers and standing ovation – all in that order!''
''Feeling anxious or stressed about an upcoming speech? Look no further than Speechy... I just delivered my Best Man speech this past weekend and absolutely crushed it. I was nervous leading up to the moment, but while delivering my speech, I didn't want the experience to end, the room was hooked, and laughing at every joke. Worth every penny... Thank you!''
''Navigating through the wedding industry often feels like you’re stuck on a conveyer belt....Speechy is the complete opposite. They treat you and your wedding like you’re the one and only. I couldn’t recommend them more.''
''Heidi and the whole team at Speechy are an absolute gem! In addition to their talent and extensive experience in speech writing, Heidi had an impressive way of listening to me talk about mine and my partners personal anecdotes, before putting it in such a funny and beautiful way that it felt as though she’d known us for years.''
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