Ooga-Chaka Ooga-Ooga

 

I knew this was going to be a fun couple to work with when Stephanie called to set up their first lesson and told me their wedding dance was going to be to the Guardian’s of the Galaxy theme song! What we created with them was fun and lively, yet still romantic. Unfortunately, there was a miscue with the DJ and we’ll never get to see the actual first dance, but this practice session offers a pretty good peek at how it would have gone.

 

So sassy!

Fresh as a Ocean Breeze

This couple just proves the old saying “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” You see, while they were taking lessons one of them was living in Memphis and the other in St. Louis. Talk about dedication! Completing this routine took a lot of planning, but it was all worth it when they had their gorgeous and romantic first dance on the beach at sunset.

Teamwork gets it done.
Tropical perfection!

 

Wedding Dance Snags to Watch Out For


The first dance is one of the highlights of the reception, so you’ll want to make sure that it goes as smoothly as possible. Let’s look at a few common (and easily preventable) problems that you might encounter.

Too Long Song

Let’s start with your song. Hopefully you’ve picked out something that you both love and that is meaningful to you. That doesn’t mean you have to use the whole thing! People get bored quickly and you’d be surprised how long 3 or 4 minutes can feel when everyone’s eyes are on you. Have your song professionally edited (not that expensive) down to 1 ½ to 2 minutes and everyone will be happier.

 

 
Gorgeous, but can she do the wobble?

 Dress Stress

You deserve to look like a princess on your wedding day, but remember that all those layers, lace, sequins, pearls, and whatever else will feel very different from what you usually wear. Even bustled, wedding dresses sometimes cause unexpected problems. Long before the big day you should put on the dress and try moving around in all directions. Walk forwards, backwards (often difficult), and sideways. Try spinning around. And if your gown is strapless, make sure you can raise your arms over your head comfortably. Having a boob pop out when your dad twirls you around is next level embarrassing.

If you do find any problems with movement, your dressmaker may be able to help. If not, just make sure you clue in your fiancé, father, and choreographer (if you have one) ahead of time about your concerns

Shoe Boo

Just as with the dress, practice dancing in your wedding shoes. This is especially true if you’ll be wearing 4-inch stilettos when you normally sport tennis shoes. And if you plan to wear different shoes for the ceremony and reception, be sure to tell your dressmaker to account for any difference in height. Whatever height heel you decide on, use a nail file to smooth any rough spots so they won’t catch on the fabric of your dress. And if your shoes don’t have straps, consider using clear elastic straps over your instep when you’re dancing so that your shoes stay on securely.

 

Professional Confessional

Good communication with the professionals involved in your wedding is essential to avoid disappointing results. Speak to everyone ahead of time so they know exactly what you want.

First speak to your contact at the venue about the size and layout of the floor. How will people be arranged around it? Where will you be walking on from? What type of surface (carpet, tile, wood) will you be dancing on? Also ask if you can practice on it ahead of time. You’ll feel more relaxed if you can.

If you’ve had your song edited, make sure your DJ has a copy. If not, you may want to ask him or her to fade it out after a certain amount of time. He or she also needs to know when to start the music (i.e. as you’re announce, while you’re walking on, when you’re in position, or on your cue).

The photographer and videographer will approach your dance a little differently depending on what you’re doing, so tell them what to expect. If you’re doing a standard stand-and-sway (no judgement) they’ll stay close and focus on your faces and maybe take some shots of your feet. If you have something more elaborate planned they’ll want to move back a bit to be sure to fit it all in. Clue them in on any “spectacular” moves like lifts or dips so they know where to position themselves for the best shots.

Rehearsal Dispersal (okay, it’s a stretch)

The last (and maybe the most important) thing is to practice together ahead of time as often as you can. You’ll feel a lot less stressed if you can dance with each other comfortably and know what to expect. And besides, it’s fun!