Keep your dance expectations realistic

Keep Your Dance Expectations Realistic

I am writing this article after a disappointing lesson last night where I had a wedding couple insisting on performing a difficult dance they found on Youtube but who were not prepared to work on the basic principles of the dance to ensure they looked good doing it.

They believe that by being able to emulate in their own way, and remember the sequence of, the twisting moves, the dips and lifts in their own fashion, that they were dancing and they thought they looked good, which was unfortunately not the case.

When they came for their first lesson they told me they wanted a spectacular dance and they wanted to look smooth and polished as they performed it. I explained that there were two sides to learning dance like that, one side is learning the basic steps of the dance and the technique to dance them smoothly and in unity and the other side is adding the flash moves, dips and twirls so they compliment the dance and look fluid and (in this case) graceful.

Several lessons were spent teaching them the basic foundation of the dance as well as developing the choreography they wanted as well as teaching them the principles and dance techniques to practice between lessons so that they could make it look smooth and polished as they wanted.

Each lesson they arrived announcing they wanted more choreography and also proudly demonstrated what they had ‘’learnt’’ themselves from Youtube and each lesson I had to fix it up for them and struggle to get them moving smoothly and in time to the music, most of which they ignored because they were so determined to do every flash move possible.

My disappointment is because they actually do have the potential to look stunning if they would just adjust their perspective to implement a balance of technique and flash moves and be prepared to simplify some of the moves a little so that they could perform them smoothly. Instead, they will go out on their wedding day looking clumsy, out of time to the music and very over choreographed.

I question why one would have dance lessons to then not get the result of looking smooth and looking like you know what you are doing?

Have you ever been to a wedding where the bride and groom have ‘’obviously’’ had dancing lessons and they dance like tin soldiers concentrating on remembering the steps?

It’s not a good look at all and when I see couples like this at a wedding I feel sorry for the fact that they put the time and effort into dancing lessons and did not get taught with the objective of both being able to do the steps AND dance them looking natural, relaxed and comfortable, which is the ideal way to look for your first dance as husband and wife.

I’ve been dancing my entire life, performed full time professionally for 15 years and have taught dancing for over 25 years and I love flash choreography, love performing it and love teaching it, but my focus is always on the most important thing which is to look good dancing.

It is far far better to dance only a few steps and look great doing them, look like a couple, look smooth and polished, than it is to attempt complex steps and choreography that is beyond your skill level and still look awkward or clumsy even though you are dancing your feet off.

Your wedding dance is not a performance to a critical or paying audience expecting to be entertained, it is a part of your wedding day rituals and celebration that is shared with your guests, your family and closest friends. It is your first dance as husband and wife, it is all about your relationship as a couple, and as such I have always believed that your wedding dance is personal and that you should indeed look like a couple and look like you know what you are doing in as natural and smooth way as possible.

A professional teacher with plenty of experience teaching wedding couples can make your dance as simple or extravagant as you wish even if your dance skills are limited but should also keep the right perspective on the dance, that is being a personal dance for your first dance as husband and wife, not an unfortunate spectacle of a duckling trying to be a swan!

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