How Many Lessons Do I Need For My Wedding Dance?
Hmmm... this is a little bit of a 'how long is a piece of string' type question... In order to answer this question we often have to ask things like;
- How much dance experience have you had in the past? (If any, absolutely fine if you have none, most people are beginners when they learn to dance for their wedding day) :)
- If no dance experience, have either of you ever played a musical instrument or played a lot of sports?
- How much time are you going to set aside for practise?
- What sort of look and feel do you want or what style of dance you will be doing. But if you're thinking: 'Help! I cant decide what style to do for my First!' read on.
- What is the song you are planning on dancing too? Some First Dance songs are harder/easier than others.
So without knowing any of those answers we have thrown together a few quick little example videos of a basic rumba song used for a wedding dance at different intervals of lessons.
These videos are assuming you have normal/average ability, have not danced before and are attending a private lesson once per week and practising once per week in between classes.
This is also using a nice easy rumba song.
If you have not chosen your wedding dance song yet here's some tips on how to make the decision and choose the right song for you.
4-8 Weeks of Lessons
If you regularly attend a private class each week and practise in between for around 8 weeks you'll notice that your steps are moving together okay and you're able to stay in time with the music. It's really the lack of hip movement that stands out as it has not had time to develop. This can give a slightly stiff or statuesque appearance. Your teacher will certainly be focusing more on repitition and there wont be a huge variety in the step patterns as becoming comfortable will be the main aim here. The 4- 8 weeks is okay for a very basic dance, just make sure you practise a lot in between classes to ensure you feel as comfortable as possible with it as you can for the big day!
There should be no lifts, dips or drops if this is the time limit you have avaialble. With such a short time to prepare these elements can cause trouble on the day!
4-6 Months of Lessons
This is Michelle and Winston demonstrating a Rumba using lead and follow with the kind of movement and step patterns you can expect to get after attending classes for 4-6 months leading up to the big day. Notice there is nice hip movement and arm styling starting to be used. A couple that have been dancing regularly for 4-6 months will be able to dance their First Dance without thinking as it will no be at that 'autolpilot' level. This leads the dance to have a more natural and relaxed appearance. The step patterns can be a bit more fancy and fun. This couple could also be to dance a bit of basic rock n roll or salsa as well so on the night they are not one hit wonders! :)
9-12 Months of Lessons
Winston really wanted to wear a beard for this one to show the developement over time.. haha
Michelle and Winston here are demonstrating a lead and follow rumba that you could expect after a couple has been learning for 9-12 months before their wedding day. Not only will they have a lovely relaxed looking first dance but they will also be able to dance the basics of multiple other styles such as salsa, bachata, rock 'n roll and waltz at the drop of a hat if they want to. They can add lifts and highlight moves and can move around the floor with ease. They both have technique and styling nailed and can dance without thinking :)
Many brides and grooms start lessons for their wedding day and then find they really enjoy their dance lessons each week as a bit of fitness, fun and quality time. They love it so much that they just keep on dancing! :)