Free English Lessons

Wedding Nightmares – Listening Lesson (B2)

When was the last time you went to a wedding? Did it go well? In this free English listening lesson, you can hear a woman talking about a wedding where everything went wrong! You can also learn useful vocabulary to talk about weddings in English. This is a lesson for upper intermediate learners.

Listen to the dialogue at normal speed here:

or listen to a slower version here:

A: So, how was the wedding?
B: A complete disaster!
A: Really? What happened?
B: Well, first of all, the groom and his friends had had the stag night the night before.
A: Uh-huh …
B: So, the groom was sick during the reception and he got it all over the bride’s dress!
A: (Tut) … Everyone knows you shouldn’t have the stag night the day before your own wedding! Did she have to change out of the dress?
B: Yeah, actually, she had a spare one! But there’d already been some more chaos during the ceremony before. The best man dropped the rings, they rolled away, everybody was looking … It must have taken ten minutes or so before they could continue.
A: Oh no, I bet he was embarrassed.
B: There’s more … during the speech, he made a joke about one of the bridesmaids and she left crying.
A: Oh my goodness! That happened to a wedding I went to – the bridesmaid actually stormed out in tears! The golden rule for a best man’s speech is to not make fun of the bride’s friends!
B: But it gets worse. He got the bride’s name wrong! He started the toast with “I propose a toast to John and Anthea” – but the bride’s name is Andrea!
A: Wow! How can you make a mistake like that!
B: And then, when the bride threw the bouquet, there was one girl so eager to catch it that she just pushed people aside, and one of those people crashed into the wedding cake and it fell on the floor!
A: Well, I suppose at least it was a wedding to remember!

Wedding Nightmares – exercise 1
Listening skill: listening for specific words

Look at pictures of five things that you can see at a wedding.

Then, listen to the full dialogue and put the five pictures in the order they are first mentioned.

Wedding Nightmares – exercise 2
Pronunciation: hard-to-hear words

In informal conversations, speakers often use words like ‘so’, and other conjunctions, but because they are not the most important words in the sentence, they are pronounced very quickly. Can you hear them?

Listen to five examples of this and write the first word the speaker uses in each clip.

Wedding Nightmares – exercise 3
Vocabulary: wedding words

Do you have specific words for the people at a wedding in your own language? What are the man and woman called? In English, there are words that are only used in the context of getting married.

Look at five wedding words and listen to how the speakers use the words in the dialogue. Then, match the words with the descriptions.

Wedding Nightmares – exercise 4
Comprehension: understanding details

Now that you have studied some of the words relating to weddings, answer five questions about what happened.

Write one letter a-c in each answer space.

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