Post # 1
My Fiance is from New orleans, and his mom said something about a typical dance that is done at weddings. I think it is the second line, but all the information I pull on up on it says its for Funerals. If ya’ll could explain what dance you do at weddings and any information as far as how to explain and what kind of music/props are needed that would be so wonderful.
Post # 3
It’s a little long but hopefully this helps!
"The tradition of the second line parades was borrowed from modern jazz funeral parades held in New Orleans. Brass bands began to perform at funerals in the late 1800’s making them "jazz funerals". Music is a key component to New Orleans culture that it is used to celebrate life; whether it is a wedding or the passing of a loved one. When the church service was over, the entire congregation walked from the church to the cemetery with the brass band playing slow mournful music led by a Grand Marshall. On the way back the music became more joyful and it became a celebration of the deceased person’s life; the music and dancing represents the release and goodbye of the deceased. Friends, acquaintances and even family would form a second line behind the grieving immediate family (called the first line) and they would dance and sing, usually waving umbrellas and handkerchief’s in the air as they danced on the streets. I’m not quite sure how the umbrella and handkerchief became part of this tradition but I honestly think it was to shield the funeral procession from the hot New Orleans sun as they walked/danced in the parade.
This second line was then incorporated into a modern day New Orleans wedding tradition and the key components are 1) brass band, 2) guests waving handkerchiefs, 3) the bride and groom usually wave his/hers umbrellas, 4) and last but not least some dancing. Sometimes alchohol is usually added to the mix! The umbrellas are specially decorated for the day; they incorporate embellishments such as lace, flowers, ribbons, and sequins to make them extra festive. You can either have a second line from the church to the reception site or at the end of the wedding festivities leading the guests out of the reception site dancing into the streets"
Post # 4
Thanks so much! This was so helpful.
Post # 5
The handkerchief is an essential part of the second line. Everybody waves it in the air as the music is playing and dances around the room following the bride and groom whom have umbrellas. It is really fun.
Post # 6
You can just use napkins to, we do it all the time with white napkins. That helps on the cost?
Post # 7
Parasols for the bride and groom and white handkerchiefs (paper napkins work fine too) for the crowd are a must! The band plays a Second Line song, and everyone waves their handkerchiefs and dances around (or parades if you’re outside), This eBay seller has some cute parasols and an explanation: http://reviews.ebay.com/Bridal-Parasols-and-Mardi-Gras-Second-Line-Umbrellas_W0QQugidZ10000000001235239
And great handkerchiefs here: http://secondlinehandkerchiefs.com/
For the life of me I can’t remember the name of the song they usually play…it has no words…but any upbeat brass band song will do!
Post # 8
Usually they play what is called "Second Line". You can probably find the song on iTunes under Mardi Gras music!