Traditionally, the bride and groom choose a special song to be played at their reception for their first dance as a married couple. Consultants advise that you carefully consider your choice. Is the "special song" you select one that you and your groom can dance to comfortably with grace? Is it one that will stand the test of time? Sometimes a trendy or popular song of the moment will be forgotten before your first anniversary. When you relive the memories of your "first dance" ten, fifteen, or thirty years from now, will you or any of your family and guests remember the music to which you danced? Be sure to talk with your DJ, musicians and wedding planner to help you decide when and how to do your first dance and all dances thereafter.
When to start:
As a general rule, the first dance begins the dancing portion of the evening and begins after the meal portion has been completed, yet before the cutting of the wedding cake. However, a trend we’re seeing is couples making a grand entrance at the reception and perform their first dance straight away. Consider your crowds energy level, how you want the flow of the night to go, and what time you'll need to be out of your venue.
Traditionally performed to slow music, the first dance now has blossomed into a time to really showcase a couple’s personality. Choreographed dances are not only fun, they make for great feed on your wedding video and are an opportunity to get the whole bridal party in on the fun out on the dance floor.
Traditional Reception Dance Sequence:
- The new couple has their first dance together
- The second dance involves the father-of-the-bride, father-in-law and stepfather’s where applicable. They can cut into the dance during the song or can each have their own song. Keep in mind song length if many dances are scheduled or invite guests to join you during each song.
- While the bride is dancing with her father(s), the groom begins dancing with his own mother, than mother-in-law and stepmother.
- After dancing with your respective parents, if you have children, this is their opportunity to have a special dance with their parents.
- Next the new couples parents share a dance.
- The dance floor opens to everyone to join.
This sequence is only a guideline. With today's non-traditional families, you might want to take a few moments well in advance of your wedding to decide how you will include all the significant members of your families and wedding party in the traditional first dance. Be sure to inform all the involved members how you want everything to work so that they are comfortable stepping in at the right time.
Don’t minimize the importance of the last dance. It’s the final hooray of an amazing day; choose a song that will get everyone out on the dance floor one last time.
Not everyone finds the attention of dancing comfortable. If either of you has "two-left-feet," dance lessons may very likely save the day. Plus the classes make for excellent pre-wedding date nights!
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