I have been fortunate to have been invited to be an Emcee for many events in the past. As with any other task, being an Emcee requires skill and preparation. In this post which will make you laugh, I will share with you what I do to plan for my Emcee presentation. One has to consider the nature of the event, the needs and requirements of the organisers of the event, the people who will be attending the event, the overall style of the event and then plan an appropriate strategy. In the process of planning and discussing with the organisers and other people, I generally have much fun. I love to conduct research and to spend time thinking and planning my Emcee script. There is a creative element to the work and I find the creativity stimulating.

To better present my ideas, I will use an event as an example. Many years ago I was invited to be the Emcee for an annual dinner held after a charity golf game. I was not paid for my work. However, I embraced the task with much joy as I enjoyed the mental stimulation and the creative planning that it provided.


I am not a golfer but married to one, as I am, I had learned quite a bit about the game. However, to emcee a dinner for golfers required some more knowledge of the game. Hence for the next few years as I performed this task, I bought various books on the game and I read up as much as possible about it. I quickly discovered that birdies, eagles and albatrosses were really not just members of the feathered species. I corrected myself from believing that golf is a game which begins with a golfball and ends with a highball. From my readings I learned that golf was named by drunken Scots after listening to barking dogs.

I knew that the people attending the event were well educated and had a great sense of humour. I knew that I could not tell silly stories. I was also aware that my performance would take place after a cocktail session and most of the attendees would be in a merry state by then. So the rule I adopted was to make a good presentation filled with stories that would make the people laugh.

Quotes and Poems

I started researching for quotes and poems about golf, about food, about being together. I love quotes and I know that they take the presentation to a greater height. They add an intellectual dimension to the event. Let me share with you here a quotation by Sir Winston Churchill.

“Golf is a game whose aim is to hit a very small ball into an even smaller hole, with weapons singularly ill-designed for the purpose.”

Another good quote is the one by Mark Twain. He said, “Golf is a good walk spoiled.”

A poem I used once before telling the audience that Dinner would be served shortly is the following by Owen Meredith:

He may live without books-what is knowledge but grieving?
He may live without hope-what is hope but deceiving?
He may live without love-what is passion but pining?
But where is the man that can live without dining?


I would research for suitable jokes and anecdotes. Often I would adapt them to suit the occasion and the attendees. Here’s one that I used for one event. I hope you like it.

The Argentinian golfer, Roberto de Vicenzo fooled his Australian companion Noel Ratcliffe as they played a practice round before the British Open. They were just about to tee-off on one hole, a dog-leg with a massive row of trees in the corner when de Vicenzo said, “When I was your age, I used to hit the ball over those trees.” Naturally Ratcliffe could not resist the challenge and tried to smash the ball over the top of them. But he didn’t make it and drove right into the trees. “But then,” finished the wily old pro,
“those trees had only just been planted.”


At another golf dinner when I knew that there would be a number of politicians present in the audience, I told the following story and received the wildest applause for it. The story is about people in the professions. A surgeon, a Field Marshall and a politician had a very liquid lunch together and were now in deep argument. “A surgeon’s job is the oldest profession in the world,” said the surgeon. “What makes you say that?” asked the Field Marshall. “Well, replied the surgeon, “When woman was created she was made from one of Adam’s ribs and surely only a surgeon could do something like that.” “Nonsense!” snorted the Field Marshall. “Even before Adam and Eve there was a world and it is said that order was created out of chaos. Who else could do that but a soldier of the highest rank?” “Ah!” said the politician, but who do you think created the chaos to start with?”

In Summary

By now you can tell that I thoroughly enjoyed my role as Emcee. It was hard work preparing and planning for the event. You need confidence to walk on stage, look at your audience and make your presentation. When you hear the applause and the laughter you know that the work put in earlier had all been worthwhile. Start with a bang and end on a high note. I always checked with the organisers on what they wanted, the programme and the people attending. Remember to dress appropriately for the event. Your outfit can enhance your presentation immensely. My advice to you is that if you like being an Emcee, then keep taking on jobs because the more you do the better you become. Susan Klein, a Producer and Emcee said this of the Emcee’s role:

“The Emcee is the glue that holds a storytelling evening together.”


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