Stories are complex. We would like to believe that our stories are as easy as the movies make it out and we can tell them in nice feature length movie chunks, but being human is a complex deal. That’s the thought that runs through my head when I’m asked “So why did you become a celebrant?”
At first I want to tell them about my initial fear of marriage after seeing my parents tear the idea apart in front of me as a child. Then I want to tell them about the family wedding I attended about 15 years ago where the rocks on the beach had more charisma than the celebrant, which is the real reason I Googled “how to become a celebrant”, but that’s not how I ended up here in your digital feed annoying you with this blog post.
I ended up on this blog in April 2018 telling you my story because someone loved me (Spoiler: it’s Britt) and saw the potential in me to be really good at this celebrant thing. She inspired me to build this business and you’ve probably been married by me or wondered if maybe you could or should be married by me.
That’s how my second act really started. The first act was becoming a celebrant because I thought I might possibly be able to make weddings better, because if you’re going to go to the trouble of not-hating someone, then that’s worth celebrating really well. My second act was translating that passion into a business that has taken Britt and I to the far reaches of the globe (Iceland, USA, Europe, NZ, Bali, Canada) whilst also providing a wage to provide for our family’s living expenses.
The third act begins today as I realise how my couples get the most value out of me, and how I can ride this horse called celebrancy into the sunset, because I’d really like to buck the trend and actually be in business in the wedding industry for a really long time.
What is the third act?
It’s just a weird way of saying that Married By Josh is evolving once more. The first act was becoming a celebrant in May 2009, the second was realising how to be a good celebrant (2012), this third act in 2018 is about realising how I can bring the most value to couples’ weddings. That’s fancy corporate speak for “how can I be the best me at your wedding?”
It’s simple: the couples that have raved about me the most, left the best reviews, told me that every single cent of my fee was a bargain, are the couples who not only ask me to be their marriage celebrant but their MC as well.
MCing a wedding is a tough skill in that you provide words, leadership, and a backbone to the whole event, working with all the other vendors to create an awesome celebration. It’s a real skill, and I’ve talked to so many couples after their wedding and the MC they thought would be really good wasn’t that great at commanding a crowd, keeping them entertained, involved, and cheering the couple onward.
So what changes?
From today, I’m only offering ceremony and reception packages. If you want to elope, chat to my fantastic partner Britt at The Elopement Collective, and if you aren’t having a reception then shoot me an email and I’d still love to be your marriage celebrant, but if you’re planning a wedding, I’d love to be the guy who is on the microphone, leading you and your guests through an awesome celebration from the start of the day to the end of the night.
I believe that I can bring the best value to your wedding if I’m your MC as well. As Britt and I begin our family I want to be able to give more to her and our bub, whilst also bringing more value to my couples, and I think this is the best way.
There are over 120,000 weddings a year in Australia, and about 9,000 celebrants, so I can’t be every couples’ celebrant, but for the few I can marry I’d like to do the best job possible.
What are my reception packages?
I can be your MC, or MC and DJ, and I’ve also got a digital open-air photo and GIF photo booth available to bring some fun to the reception.
The options are:
- Ceremony + MC
- Ceremony + MC and photo booth
- Ceremony + MC and DJ
- Ceremony + MC and DJ and photo booth
You might not have known that before I went full time in celebrancy I was a radio DJ so I’ve got a few skills in rocking tunes. I’m not a “give me your list of tunes and I’ll just play them” kind of DJ, so I’ll be honest and say I’m not everyone’s cup of tea. I’ve got a real 90s/00s alternative indie bend, with a love of mainstream rock like the Foo Fighters and the Killers. But I’m also a bit of a pop-bitch as well because Taylor Swift, Kanye, and Macklemore rock. Music is complicated.
Is this crazy?
Look at every other celebrant in Australia and they’re not doing this. And the reason you’ve come to read this is because you like the fact that I’m not every other celebrant. You like that I’m me. Which is the only thing that gets me out of bed in the morning, is that a handful of humans each year like me as me and think their wedding could be better served if I was at it, so thank you.