Jewish Weddings

Rehearsal Dinner?

Hi Everyone!

I'm in the middle of studying for conversion so I don't know too much about the wedding traditions yet, but I can't seem to find anything about the rehearsal/rehearsal dinner? Did anyone have one (or planning to) before their wedding?

Our wedding is on a Sunday in the summer, so if this is done, when would be the best time to schedule it so that it does not conflict with Shabbat?

Sorry if this is a silly question, but I'm still learning! Thanks! :)
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Re: Rehearsal Dinner?

  • 2dBride2dBride
    2500 Comments Fourth Anniversary 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    member
    edited December 2011
    Traditionally, there is no rehearsal for a Jewish wedding.  I've now been married twice in Jewish ceremonies, and the rabbi just gave us instructions on who goes where a few minutes before the ceremony.

    That being said, you can always have a dinner the night before.  At my first wedding, we had one for all the out of town guests who had arrived by the night before.  My second wedding was very small, and we provided accommodations for everyone for the night before the wedding and the wedding night.  We just ordered a bunch of pizzas for everyone the night before the wedding.
  • edited December 2011
    Ditto 2dbride. H's parents did host a dinner the night before the wedding but there was no rehearsal.
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  • edited December 2011
    We did have a rehearsal dinner, which we did on Saturday night (our wedding was Sunday afternoon).  If you want to have one, you could either do it Saturday night starting late (after Shabbat ends), or if your guests are mostly local or will be there in time, you could do it Thursday night or have a rehearsal luncheon or something instead on Friday.

    As far as an actual rehearsal, we just did a quick walk-through on Saturday afternoon, which was led by our day-of coordinator (rabbi did not attend, obviously).  Depending on how observant you and your FI (and families/guests) are, if you want to avoid Shabbat entirely you could do a quick walk-through late Saturday night or even Sunday morning, or you could also do it Friday afternoon before Shabbat begins.
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  • tenofcups4metenofcups4me
    2500 Comments 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
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    edited December 2011
    I've never been to a rehearsal dinner for a Jewish wedding or heard one in real life. I have read about some here. I've always seen a quick run-through of the ceremony right before the ceremony, never a full-on rehearsal the day before.
  • edited December 2011
    We didn't rehearse at all but we did have a "Welcome Dinner"  the evening before the wedding for our close family, bridal party, and all out of town guests. No one at our wedding was shomer shabbos and all were able to come before shabbat ended. I think we started around 6 and ended at 8:30(ish).
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  • Bonzo2011Bonzo2011
    Fifth Anniversary 100 Comments 5 Love Its
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    edited December 2011
    In my family, we typically do a family Shabbat dinner before going to the synagogue if the couple are doing an aufruf. We did the same thing with all the b'nai mitzvot too, now that I think about it.

    I haven't talked to my rabbi yet about whether or not we will do a real rehearsal. If the rabbi is there, rehearsal would probably be during the day on Friday (we're getting married on a Sunday). If not, we may just do a brief walk-through with the wedding party on Saturday. Since the majority of our wedding party is not Jewish, and my family is not shomer shabbos (we're Reform), and FI's family is not Jewish, we will probably do some kind of dinner Saturday night. I'm not sure yet if this will be in addition to Friday night yet...my mom said she'd take care of the Friday night plans!

    Of course, being Jews, food is central. What's a wedding without 3 nights of celebratory dinners all in a row? lol
  • edited December 2011
    I had a "rehearsal" dinner and I've been to them for all of my family's weddings as well.  We didn't rehearse, but it's a nice way to kick off the wedding weekend and we gave our wedding party their gifts then as well.
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  • edited December 2011
    Wouldn't having a rehersal dinner conflict with not having contact with your beloved the week before the wedding?
  • edited December 2011
    i think your decision is based on how traditional you want to be. 

    traditionally there is no rehearsal for a jewish wedding because a wedding ceremony is considered to be something you do once, and once only.  it is also avoided because the bride and groom traditionally do not see each other for the week before the wedding ceremony.  a rehearsal dinner would interfere with this.  also, a jewish wedding is considered to be one of the holiest moments in the bride and grooms lives.  it's not treated like a show or performance that gets rehearsed 'till its right. 

    we didn't do a rehearsal, but WERE extremely organized in terms of communicating to people in the wedding party what to expect.  Our DOC was invaluable in orchestrating the whole thing as well.  not having a rehearsal allows for some very "real" moments.  for instance, we got one of my favourite photos when my dad couldn't figure out how to lift my veil to kiss me, so kissed me through it you just can't rehearse a moment like that. :)

    good luck with your decision! 

     
  • LisaBRMLisaBRM
    10 Comments
    member
    edited December 2011
    In Response to Re: Rehearsal Dinner?:
    I've never been to a rehearsal dinner for a Jewish wedding or heard one in real life. I have read about some here. I've always seen a quick run-through of the ceremony right before the ceremony, never a full-on rehearsal the day before.
    Posted by tenofcups4me
    Same here.  The night before my wedding, I had dinner with my family and my husband had dinner with his family.
    Lisa
    Not a newbie, but, had to create a new account - formerly LBR_NJ

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  • ShoshieShoshie
    Knottie Warrior 100 Comments
    member
    edited December 2011
    We had a runthough the night before (we married on a Sunday), just so everyone would know where to go.

    DH and I didn't participate.

    We then had our "rehearsal" dinner - which was actually more of an out-of-towner dinner.

    You might need to do a runthrough Friday night before shabbat - since it is so late.
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  • LisaBRMLisaBRM
    10 Comments
    member
    edited December 2011
    In Response to Re: Rehearsal Dinner?:
    Wouldn't having a rehersal dinner conflict with not having contact with your beloved the week before the wedding?
    Posted by artisticjewishbride2013
    I think only very traditional brides and orthodox brides do this today.  My husband and I didn't see each other for the week leading up to the wedding, but, I only know a handful of other couples that did this.
    Lisa
    Not a newbie, but, had to create a new account - formerly LBR_NJ

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  • manduh425manduh425
    First Comment
    member
    edited December 2011
    Thanks for all your responses! They will help us make a decision on what to do! Very helpful! Thanks again!
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