“More drama, please!” That’s probably NOT what you said when you started planning your wedding. But not all drama is bad – sometimes a certain sense of flair, an unforgettable moment or an over-the-top beautiful look is exactly what will make your wedding unforgettable.

Want to take your Chicago-area wedding beyond “ordinary”? Here are 4 ways to inject a little drama.

1. Try uplighting.

Lighting is one of the most dramatic ways to transform your reception space. If you’re looking for a mood of elegance that’s palpable from the moment guests enter the room, this is one of the most efficient places to put your money. Talk to your designer about lighting, see if your DJ can provide it, or ask your venue for their recommendations.

4 Ways to Make the Wedding More Dramatic2. Tell your story.

Your relationship is what today’s about – and hearing your story is the fastest way for guests to feel they know you, not just as individuals, but as a couple.

Work out – in brief – the tale of how and why you fell in love, then decide when and by whom it could be shared. Your officiant could work it in during your wedding ceremony, or a friend could read it. A parent or loved one could tell your love story at the start of the reception, or you could do it yourselves if you’re inclined to take the microphone.

A succinct telling of your story will help guests who may not have seen you for years understand what your relationship is all about. They’ll feel more connected to you and to your party. Just don’t go on for too long – keep it to 5 minutes at your ceremony, or under 2 if it’s part of the reception when bellies are starting to rumble.

3. Think like a photographer.

Any good film director knows that even the best stories fall flat if they’re not complemented with the right look. Whether you’re decorating a church or setting up a ceremony site outdoors, approach it like you’re composing a photograph, and position people and objects to achieve a sense of balance and beauty. Not sure what this means? Your photographer and your florist are both masters of composition. Ask them how the space should be set up.

4. Include live music.

Live music has a human element that pre-recorded music lacks – and every performance is unique, which adds to the drama.

If you’re booking Backthird and have hired an ensemble like a jazz quintet or pop strings quartet for dinner hour, you can even dance your first dance to the live ensemble before your DJ opens the dance floor. We’ve done this often, and there’s nothing like it.