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Wedding Dance Instruction
Your First Dance as a Married Couple
Your first dance as a married couple is truly a special occasion, so you may want to put some special effort into preparing for it. You will want it to be special, fun, exciting, and unique -- and you will want to look good at your wedding reception! If you're not a good dancer, don't worry. Once you pick out a song, it won't take long to get comfortable dancing to it. Once approach is to just hold each other romantically and sway to the music. But you may want to consider taking some private dance lessons. A dance instructor can help you learn some easy dance steps especially suited to the music you love so well. An added benefit is that partner dancing can be extremely enjoyable and it can give the two of you something special to do together as a couple -- even after your wedding!.
The First Dance. There is a traditional sequence of pairing up couples at a wedding dance that you may want to observe. You have other ideas, of course. You can modify the follow description of the traditional sequence to fit your unique situation.
The first couple on the floor, of course, will be the Bride and Groom.
After the First Dance -- Father of Bride. Mother of Groom.. After first dance, the Bride and her Father will dance together. After a few bars of music the Groom may invite his Mother to Dance. When the song finishes, the couples thanks each other and the Bride and Groom return to each other,
The Third Song -- Attendants. When the next song starts, the attendants (as they were paired in the wedding) begin dancing with each other. The parents of each attendant may also dance together. All this time, the Bride and Groom continue dancing together. The parents of the bride and groom may also continue dancing join in and dance with each other.
The Fourth Tune -- Guests. When the fourth song starts, the attendants and parents of the attendants may split up and start asking guests who are still sitting down to dance. It is a good idea for the attendants to thank their partners at the end of every dance and find someone new to dance with who is still sitting down. This approach will help to ensure that everyone has a good time and everyone is invited to dance.
An easy structured, partner dance is available for all wedding tunes. The key is knowing what dance is appropriate for what music. Some good choices for wedding dances are: the nightclub two-step, Foxtrot, rumba, argentine tango, and waltz. So that these couples are comfortable dancing at the reception, you may want to arrange for some special group lessons. The wedding party and parents of the wedding party members may really enjoy getting together to do this. Dance lessons are not really necessary: couples can just hold each other and sway to the music. But knowing just a few steps can make dancing so much more fun, not to speak of helping everyone look great while dancing..
Phil Seyer specializes in giving such lessons in the Sacramento/Roseville Area. He is also available for private dance lessons. You can reach him at 866-401-3535 (toll free).
Your dance instructor can help you decide what style of dancing is best suited for your favorite music and how many lessons you will need. But it is best to start the lessons as soon as possible. Don't wait until the month before your wedding. It is a good idea to learn a dance well and then to go out dancing once a week for several weeks before your wedding. This will be great fun and it will ensure that you feel really comfortable with the dance. If you don't have time for that, don't worry, you can still learn to dance in a hurry with a crash course of private lessons. .
Snow Ball Dance
Later in the party, perhaps after a break, you might want to try a "Snow Ball" Dance. You can have the MC explain how it works. In a snow ball, when the music stops, the first couple on the floor splits up and asks someone sitting down to dance.
The band or DJ will stop playing momentarily in the middle of the song. The MC will then announce. "OK, find a new partner. Ask someone to dance who is sitting down." Each time the music stops, the dancers thank each other and then ask someone sitting down to dance. This will work especially well if the members of the wedding party are prepared to do this ahead of time.
The couple starting the snow ball can be friends of the bride and groom who are especially good dancers. Once the snow ball is underway, you, (the wedding couple) may join in and continue to dance with each other.
There are many possibilities for how dancing at a wedding reception is handled. Some couples like to have the Wedding DJ invite everyone to support the bride and groom by joining in, in the middle of the First Dance. A nice things about this is that it takes the pressure off the bride and groom. One way to "orchestrate" this is to ask the guests to "watch for the dip." When they see the groom dip is bride, that can be a signal for the guests to join in.
Group Dance Lesson at the Reception?
After a while, you may want to do some dances with your friends, too. A good way to add extra fun and excitement is to ask your dance teacher give a special introductory dance lesson at the party. Make sure your instructor has some experiencing with this type of lesson, which must be different from the usual dance studio instruction.. Such a lesson has to be quick and easy -- something to help get people on the floor and doing a simple but interesting dance step) to the music. For example, Argentine tango can be quite complex and a typical group lesson at a dance studio lasts an hour. But there is a way to have a lot of fun navigating around the dance floor with Argentine tango. The steps are simple, rhythmic walking and "rocking" steps, but they are great fun and get people dancing right away. .
"I just taught these simple steps," said Ken Delmar, a professional Argentine tango performer and instructor in San Francisco. "It was so great because even total beginners danced and they loved it -- especially the "tan-go-close" step. The DJ played several tangos during the night and every time the dance floor was packed.!"
A wedding party can be awkward for divorced parents. It can help to have a plan, whatever it is and discuss it openly ahead of time with all concerned. This will reduce uncertainty and help everyone to relax. If the divorced parents are on friendly terms, consider seating them at the same table during the dinner/dance party. This may be a lot less awkward than separating them. After all, they still have a lot in common and you can rest assured they will be on good behavior on this special day. If the divorced parents are not on friendly terms, then separate seating is best. Whatever you decide, be sure to discuss everything ahead of time and have a plan.
Although a love song is great for the initial (or dances), faster music helps to pep up the party. For maximum fun and to look great, you may want to learn dances like swing, salsa, cha-cha, mergenge, and hustle. For more details, you may want to see my article: Introduction to Social Dancing.
Here are some books that may interest you. (To see more titles
Thanks for your interested in my ideas on dancing at a wedding reception. If you need my help for your wedding dance party, please feel free to send me email or call 866-401-3535 (toll free) My multidiscipinary studies are in music and dance. I have a degree in music education from Valparaiso University with graduate work in musical composition at San Francisco State University. I received dance teacher certification from Diane Jarmolow at the Metronome Ballroom in San Francisco. I am currently working full time as a DJ, wedding pianist, and teaching private and group dance lessons.