I photographed a beautiful 50th birthday party recently. When I do parties, I like to set up some lighting in the corner to take portraits. You can knock off a bunch of portraits really fast and not totally rely upon candids to get the shots of the evening. I love the look of candids, but they are dicey. Usually I just use a single soft box key light to keep things simple and non-intrusive. This time, I had a proper walled-off corner where I could set up and not be in the way.
I used a soft box key to the right, a fill shoot through umbrella, and then two hair lights in strip boxes shooting down on the subjects. I used a 24-70mm at 24mm on a crop sensor at f/7.1 and was a 50mm f/8.0 for most of the night.