(Closed) 4 "special" dances? (first dance, father-daughter, mother-son, mother-daughter)

posted 5 years ago in Reception
Post # 16
252 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: St. petersburg, FL

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lmo013 :  I agree. Ultimately, OP should do what she wants, but I just attended a wedding where they had all four dances, and it was painfully obvious that nobody was paying any attention/they were all bored (guests walking around, generally just not paying attention).

Post # 17
4813 posts
Honey bee

Do it if you are fine that people may not pay attn and head up to the bar during them.  In my circle, it is father daughter and first dance only (or mother son is done simultaneously as father daughter).  And most skip father daughter these days.  My vote would be pick a song that works for all parents and do them simultaneously or just have your dj play special songs in the course of the night and you both go dance with your moms along with everyone else instead of making it four “everyone stop and look at us dance” moments.

Post # 18
7800 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

Can you do it during dinner so I can still eat? That is so beyond boring for guests lol.

Post # 19
1700 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

We did 1st dance, father/daughter, mother/son, and bridal party dance.  I think if you keep the songs short it will be fine.  If they are all 3 minute songs, people might start to get bored.  Although, a group of adults being bored for 5 minutes is not exactly the end of the world.  It also depends on how you dance.  If you are just swaying side to side for an extended period of time, people don’t like to watch.  If you move around the dance floor and spin/dip/whatever, people will be more entertained.

Post # 20
3045 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2017 - Poppy Ridge Golf Course

You could be doing the cha cha slide for all I care and I would still be bored after the first couple minutes. Even if the songs are only 2 min each thats 8 solid minutes of nothing but staring at people dancing and it will feel like an awkward eternity. If you must have this many dances I second the suggestion to do it during dinner or be prepared people may wander off and not pay attention. 

Post # 21
1025 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

We had 4 dances, our first dance, then DH and his mom, me and my Dad, and me and my stepdad. Ours was done right at the start of the reception, DJ announced the bridal party and then DH and I, and we went right into our first dance. Then dinner service started, and we made our rounds to say thank you. While dinner was wrapping up, we did the 3 parent dances. They were all short though, 2 minutes or less, so I think that helps, if they aren’t dragging on and on and on. We did the parent dances in quick succession too, so there was no gap between any of those 3. Right after that, we opened up the dance floor. 

I think as long as you know that guests aren’t going to be locked into what you’re doing on the floor, they’ll be eating or going up to the bar etc, who cares? Be mindful of the length of the routines, and I’d suggest keeping them close together so they aren’t all spread out, and it’ll be fine.

Post # 22
951 posts
Busy bee

TBH this is always all for the bride and groom. Everyone at every wedding I’ve been to have been bored even with one dance. You just have to accept that fact. It’s not for anyone else but you and your family. Your guests put up with it. 

Post # 23
2144 posts
Buzzing bee

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willowbee :  Well if you think about it most people have 3.  I never heard of amother/daughter dance before though. 

We are taking dance lessons so we dont look horrible…just mildly bad…and our dance instructor is going to cut out half the song and end it around 1:60. He said noone wantas to listen to a dance for 3 minutes.

However, I do agree with pp. Your guests tolerate it because its just dont and its expected and they did it and it was speical to them and you will do it and it will be special to you. And when you go to a wedding youa re gonna be sighing because you wish it would end…

Post # 24
619 posts
Busy bee

So something I’ve done for wedding clients is have a couple of dances to the SAME song, but switch partners halfway through. For example, one bride had a father and a stephfather that she wanted to honor, because seh felt equally close to both men. But, just like you, she didn’t want to have too many special dances. So they danced to “Tiny Dancer” and at the bridge I gave her a little nod and her step father stepped in and danced the remaining couple of minutes of the song with her. It was actually really special, it truly felt like she was honoring the fact that both parents were her father, if that makes sense. Could your father and mother do something like that? 

Post # 25
2722 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

The only special dance we did in front of everyone was our first dance.  Then we had the band play “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder where we did the bridal party, me and my dad, and my husband and his mom.  About halfway through the band invited everyone out to dance.  I thought it worked very well because people weren’t sitting there for a long time just watching us (plus I hated being the center of attention).

Edit – Our song and the bridal party/special dance songs weren’t full versions either.  That’s also made it more appealing.

Post # 26
6257 posts
Bee Keeper


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willowbee :  I know these dances are really important to some people, but I think if that’s the case for you, then figure out how to combine them.  You don’t need 4 special songs to get your point across.  Find something that works equally well for all the parents.  Have father-daughter and mother-son dance at the same time, then maybe switch out to dance with your mom.  Now you’re down to just 2 dances instead of 4.  

Honestly with that mom, I get wanting to honor her somehow but I personally would find it really weird in general.  Is there any other circumstance where you’d dance with your mother?  Probably not. Why not present her with the bouquet instead, for instance?  Just a thought!

Post # 27
1238 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2017 - The Lodge at Little Seneca Creek

What about just dancing with your mom later in the night? Or doing a mother/child dance, and then both you and your Fiance will dance during the “mother/son” song? My FI’s father hasn’t been in the picture since he was 2, which means we’ll also only have 3 parents, but I’m not doing a special mother/daughter dance. I’m just planning to dance with her and my sister later on when everyone else is dancing.

Post # 28
113 posts
Blushing bee

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willowbee :  if it is that important to you. You should do it. I don’t know if someone mentioned it before but how about incorporating special dances at the same time like 1. Bride/groom 2. Father/daughter and mother/son at the same time 3. Mother/daughter or switch father/ daughter to mother/daughter like your dad offering you to your mother. 

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