Click the links below for party ideas, useful tips & advice.
Live Music Theme
Venue + Live Band
Celebrity / Film Theme
One of the simplest and easiest types of party to organise is a venue or marquee with a live band
. Nothing gets guests excited like a live music performance as it's far more interesting & engaging than a DJ or background music. You'll need to chose a band to suit to the occasion, your guests and the type of atmosphere you're looking for.
Popular types of party band include tribute bands
, rock and pop function bands
, or for an older audience try Swing and Jive or Rock n' Roll
Any private hire venue with a cool bar and space to dance would be suitable, but bear in mind parking and accommodation for those guests traveling beyond a taxi ride. For something a bit different try the Hard Days Night Hotel in Liverpool
, complete with a live Beatles Tribute band
like The Blue Meanies
Parties based around a live band, especially a lively band, are likely to be quite loud so consider how many elderly guests you might have. Venues with sound limiters can be a real pain so before you hand over any money, make sure the venue you choose doesn't have a limiter fitted (or if it does, that the threshold is set higher than 95dB). Also, make sure there is a dance floor and if at all possible, try to avoid venues where the bar is in a different room to the dancing as this can split guests and leave you with a less party atmosphere.
Good quality function bands will provide all of the
equipment you'll need, so all you need to do is ensure they have enough space and some light refreshments. Expect to pay upwards of £1000/£1400 for a really good 4-5 piece band. To save money check the listings here on AliveNetwork.com
and choose a band located close to your event. You can also ask the band to DJ in between sets rather than hiring a separate disco.
For most private parties a really early arrival is not necessary so if you ask the band to arrive around 6pm they should be set up, sound checked & ready for guests to arrive by 7.30pm - 8pm. Most function bands will play 2 x 60 minute performances, and we'd suggest the first to start no earlier than 9pm so guests have time to get a drink and have a chat before the music starts.
Venue + fancy dress + look alike's + casino tables + live band or DJ
For a different take on the traditional fancy dress party, try a celebrity or film theme to suit the mood you want to create. Fancy dress can be completely optional and example contemporary themes could include Lady Gaga, Footballers Wives, Sex and The City, Harry Potter or Pirates of the Caribbean. For tried and tested favourites go with James Bond, Phantom of the Opera, The Godfather, Alice in Wonderland or Hollywood Oscars Night.
For fancy dress costumes try www.escapade.co.uk
. For childrens fancy dress costumes try www.charliecrow.com
Don't forget professional look alike's
who will add a real wow factor to your party. To really get your guests talking why not arrange a red carpet entrance to your venue & have them arrive in a hired limousine
! Alive Network has look alike's to match many tv shows & films as well as musicians, footballers & royalty. Also consider hiring a photographer
or comedy paparazzi photographers to take snaps as the look alike's arrive, and then later on guests can have their photos taken with them & take the pics home as a party souvenir.
It's good to ensure there are plenty of attractions to keep guests talking & mingling so you could also consider casino tables which can tie in nicely with the celebrity theme and create a space for guests to meet, mix and break the ice. Also check out our mix and mingle acts
who will work the floor & get people talking.
As always live music makes a great feature and
you can choose an act to suit the celebrity theme. Tribute Bands
often fit the bill perfectly for themed events or for something more background, try a jazz band
or string quartet
. If you have a small number of guests or a limited budget, also take a look at our solo/duo acts
who offer excellent value for money and won't take up much room.
With any themed event it's also important to get the staging and venue right. If your budget allows, try www.smyle.co.uk
who offer top class event production services. For a more DIY approach, try www.partybox.co.uk
or for a huge range of backdrops & scene setters, visit www.amazingpartythemes.com
Venue + prop hire + fancy dress + live music + mix & mingle
Activity and Adventure Theme
It you're prepared to do a bit of decorative work (or have the budget to hire a party organiser like Theme Traders
) then you can theme your venue or marquee to look like a beach bar, a scene from the arabian nights or even the Wild West! Fancy dress is optional though it does help bring the whole thing together. For fancy dress costumes try www.escapade.co.uk or www.fancydress.com
. For childrens fancy dress costumes try www.charliecrow.com
Possible theme locations include The Wild West, Beach/Tropical/Hawian, New York, Las Vegas, African/Safari, Ancient Egypt, Atlantis, Ancient Rome, Mardi Gras/New Orleans, the list goes on. For more party theme ideas try www.partydelights.co.uk
In terms of making your venue look the part, you can chose from a wide range of props and accessories. For example, for a Hawain themed party you can hire a bamboo beach bar, free standing & table top palm trees, hoola hoops, flower garlands, surf boards, fishing nets and sand pits! Just visit some of the links on this page to find suppliers once you know the theme you want to run with.
Remember to ensure you have plenty of ice breakers to keep guests chatting and mixing. Close up Magicians
, Meet & Greet
all work well, as do Chocolate Fountians! For something a bit different, try Singing Waiters
who will really bring the house down!
Live Music. For a Las Vegas or New York themed party, have a look at Frank Sintra or Rat Pack singers like Russell Shaun
, Jim McAllister
or The Rat Pack is Back
. For Beach Party themes try The UK Beach Boys tribute band
. For anything latin/mardi gra/cuban themed try Coco Express
, all of which can be hire with salsa costumed dancers who can also give impromtu salsa lessons! For a New Orleans evening we even have a Harlem stride pianist
or else try the Silk Street Hot Seven
. For a Victorian theme try The Singing Victorians
Moving away from the traditional concept of a party, many people now celebrate a significant occassion with a day out at an activity and adventure centre, moving on to a bar or restaurant in the evening. There are hundreds of such activity locations around the UK so we'll focus here on popular activity types.
For the guys:
Paintball, Go Karting, Quad Biking, Golf, Wine Tours, Clay Pigeon Shooting & Football
For the Girls:
Day at the Races, Pampering, Salsa Dancing, Pole Dancing, Wine tasting & Nude Life Drawing
To arrange an activity day we can highly recommend our friends at www.freedomltd.com
who arrange stag & hen parties, plus corporate and birthday party outings across the UK.