History of the Wedding Dance

wedding, danceYou are probably familiar with the wedding dance, or the first dance. The tradition of the bride and groom’s first dance on their wedding day is classic. The internet is full of wedding dance videos in which couples try their best to be fun and original. Some are perfectly happy to go with the old classics, like a wedding waltz. So, why do we have this seemingly widespread tradition?

The history of the first wedding dance extends so very far and is so widespread that it is difficult to know precisely when it began. Historically, in many cultures, the first to dance at an occasion were special individuals, such as the King and Queen. If royalty did not dance first, then others had to wait for royal permission to do so. Over the years, traditions evolved, but special, celebrated people continued to be the first to dance.

In some cultures, the first dance is very specific. It may be a traditional tribal dance, something people of the culture have been dancing for ages, or it may be associated with the dominating religion. This is not too detached from what many couples do now. Today, many newlyweds select a dance and accompanying music that representative of them as a couple.

With a vast amount of dances from which to choose, and the option of going to a teacher who can choreograph something special, the first dance at a wedding is just as important as it ever was. It continues to be symbolic of the couple’s importance in general, but now, in many cultures, it is more individualized. Rather than represent the overall culture, it usually represents the couple.

If you’re getting ready to celebrate one of the happiest days of your life, consider coming to Dance Passion Studio for dances lessons. We can help you have the most wonderful first dance at your wedding.

Communication and Dance

Couples having dancing classGood communication takes practice; arguably, no one instinctively knows how to communicate well. But, it is an important skill in all aspects of life, including dance. In fact, dance calls for more than verbalization. You use physical cues and try to sense, to some degree, your partner’s need and intentions, and a combination of other forms of communication.

There is a variety of communication during a dance. You not only learn steps and how to take them, you learn to address your partner and surroundings. Additionally, all modes of communication have to be accomplished in sync with the music and dance step patterns.

You still need to communicate verbally.

Over time, you and your dance partner may be able to go without much speaking at all when dancing. You will learn the steps well enough so that they come naturally and you can focus on sensing what your partner is doing physically. However, before that can happen, you must speak to your partner about what you’re doing, what you need in order to learn and dance your best. You must verbalize your confusion, your triumphs, and perhaps engage in some constructive criticism. So, it is essential to learn to speak on these things in positive ways.

You will learn to read and communicate through body language.

Dances have their own moods. They are meant to express passion, love, anger, and more. Every dance has its own character and that allows you to express without words. These dances also have physical cues that partners use to lead and follow. The lead uses physical motions—sometimes big, sometimes subtle—to take a partner into the dance. The partner generally accepts those cues, but sometimes there is resistance. All healthy dance relationships call for this back-and-forth and give-and-take.

Physical movements, expressions, gestures, and even posture make up the silent expressiveness that is dance communication. They display strength and confidence, or the need to withdraw and start again. They express joy and passion, and sometimes sadness.

Part of all this communication is listening and watching.

Of course, none of this expression will work if one partner is not paying attention. A good communicator must truly listen and address what’s being said, or watch carefully and respond to what is being done. Active listening involves both hearing and witnessing, and then responding accordingly, and of course, kindly. This promotes mutual understanding and trust so that each person knows the other is listening and watching, and will be there in support. It is very easy to let this part of communication slide; people get focused on themselves, and their own moves, problems, and enjoyment, and they forget to pay attention to the other person.

When you take dance classes or lessons, communication is essential. If you choose someone you know well as your partner, that helps the growth of trust on the dance floor. Of course, sometimes you end up dancing with someone new. So, it’s important to be ready to try and communicate well with that partner. At Dance Passion Studio, we can do far more than just teach you the steps. We can teach you how to interact with your dance partner and learn to express yourself to them, and listen to them in turn.