Wedding Lesson FAQ

Wedding FAQs

Wedding Dance Lessons Colorado

Boulder Ballroom Dance Lessons Wedding
Your First Dance, Your Memories, Our Passion.

I am looking into several dance studios. How are you different?

We do not have a one-size-fits-all dance lessons like the big studios or franchised studios.  We are here to make your experience as unique as you are. At some studios, you may be herded into one big group class with a bunch of other people and are required to rotate and dance with other people.  At other studios, you will pay outrageous prices for basic moves, strung together and called “choreography”. These studios charge extra to teach you dips, to teach you exciting/advanced moves, and charge extra for their “choreography”.  I know because I used to work for one.

Also, none of the big studios or large chains allow video recording of lessons.  We encourage it! We even record ourselves doing your choreography, to your music, while giving verbal cues for you to practice to! Your goal is to learn to dance with your fiancé/ fiancée and be confident doing so.  Since most people are visual learners, it only makes sense to record lessons for practice and fine-tuning.

We understand that you might be super busy, require flexible scheduling, need some help with music editing, and want some support and stress relief with your dancing.  We customize everything to your unique needs and preferences and will make your dance the absolute best possible dance it can be.

Boulder Ballroom
Make Your Dance Amazing with Lessons from Boulder Ballroom

Who are the clients you typically work with?

The common thread among my clients is that they are all willing to learn, open-minded to trying something new, and have a positive attitude.  I will provide you with all the support and tools that you need to successfully and confidently perform your First Dance. Learning is a two-way street.  I can give you all the right instruction and support, but you have to be open and willing to receive them.

I am ready to start my dance lessons.  How do I get started?

The best way to start is by filling out the client application form.  We take all inquiries seriously. We want to learn as much about your needs so we can better serve you when you come to your ‘Introductory Private Lesson’.  If you prefer not to try the ‘Introductory Private Lesson’, then we can schedule a 30-minute consultation call to help you find out what program would work best for you.  Again, the best way to really know is to meet in person and start dancing!

click here to set up your introductory lesson or to contact us with any questions you may have

How much are your dance lessons and will I get what I pay for?

Our dance programs have different rates depending on which one you choose.   I encourage you to take the 60-minute ‘Introductory Private Lesson’ so that we can assess your dance level and give you the best recommendations.  This is not a “free consultation” where the instructor or studio manager tries to sell you a bunch of lessons. It is a real one-on-on dance lesson that will allow you to experience for yourselves and see if this is the right fit for you both. To start today, fill out the client application form, and I will get back to you within 24 hours.

ballroom dance
Boulder Ballroom: so bold, we’re not in Boulder.

I know I want to work with you, but I only want one or two lessons, not an entire program — can I still take lessons from you?

We understand that for whatever reasons you may only want to take a couple of lessons to learn some simple moves, however, we have designed our packages specifically to maximize your results. We want you to be happy with how you feel on your wedding day.  We highly recommend that you join one of the wedding programs. You will end up saving money, time, and energy on your dance lessons because you will see the results right away with the unique learning method.

I am not sure if I am ready to start now.  What can I do in the meantime?

We encourage you to study our Everything You Need To Know About Your First Dance Report as a starting point.  This will give you some really helpful information about how to make the most of your dance lessons. In the meantime, you can get started on finding your special song if you don’t have one.  Some people know right away, but for others it is a process to find the right song that speaks to their hearts.

ballroom dance
Boulder Ballroom: so bold, we’re not in Boulder.

What should an engaged couple have ready their dance lessons?

 Wear comfortable shoes with a smooth, flat bottom. Also, sleeves are nice, especially if you sweat a lot.  Most importantly, bring a positive attitude and an open mind to learn!

Why should an engaged couple take dance lessons prior to their wedding?

A lot of couples forget that they have to dance in front of all of their guests for their First Dance.  It is often very boring and awkward for the audience to watch you sway side to side for three minutes. We have all been a wedding like that.  How did you feel about it? It probably wasn’t too interesting for you to watch, right? It is also out of respect and love for your families and friends and you at least attempt to put on an adult-like dance, instead of the junior high school sway.  I guarantee that your guests will appreciate it and shower you both with compliments. This will also be the first time many of the guests have ever met you/ seen you two together. A great first dance is a great first impression!

Should the engaged couple already have their wedding song picked out prior to their lessons?

Yes, it is best if the engaged couple has already picked out their song. That way your instructor can start thinking about which dance style to dance you.  Otherwise, you can select a few songs and ask your instructor for his or her suggestion and advice. They can tell you which song has a great rhythm to dance, too.  However, selecting your song is a very personal process. It should really speak to you as a couple. So, go with your heart!

boulder ballroom
Make their jaws drop with a fantastic first dance

How long should the couple’s main wedding dance last (i.e. the couple’s first dance)?

The recommended time is between 1:45 and 2:30.  Long songs lose the interest of the audience. The dances on ‘Dancing With The Stars’ are never longer than 2:00 for that simple reason.  We can edit your song down for you. The shorter song also provides us time to work on the small details of dancing (arms, fluidity, footwork, posture, etc.) and is the difference between ballroom dancing and bar-room dancing. The brides will look graceful and elegant.  The groom will look masculine and confident. A shorter dance will captivate your audience rather than hold them captive.

click here to set up your introductory lesson or to contact us with any questions you may have

What are some of the most appropriate dance styles for the couple’s main wedding dance?

This entirely depends on the personality of the couple. The rumba and waltz are the most popular choices because most couples choose to dance to a slow song and want a romantic dance.  Some couples are bursting with energy and want a fun, exciting dance to a faster, up beat song. These couples typically dance east coast swing. Some couples want to shake things up with a Frank Sinatra type song and will dance the fox trot. Keep in mind, you will need a bigger dance floor to dance a waltz, fox trot, or tango as they move around the floor.  On occasion, students will come in with their ‘perfect song’ and it happens to be a Viennese waltz. The Viennese waltz is very difficult for new dancers, requires a lot more practice, and needs a very large dance floor… not to mention dancers who don’t get dizzy easily. We recommend students steer clear of the VW. We will, however, teach it to couples who have ample time available leading up to the wedding and are willing to practice on their own daily.

boulder ballroom
Your Dance, Your Memories, Our Passion

How many lessons should an engaged couple typically take so we are prepared for the big day, and what will they learn at these lessons?

The number of lessons varies obviously depending on a couple’s budget and time availability.  However, to really get something that is meaningful and beautiful out of the dance lessons, We highly recommend taking at least 10 lessons for one dance.  If you want to learn a couple of other fun styles like salsa, hustle, etc. you will need additional training. (The hustle is the dance that fits most reception music/ wedding band songs)  It does take time for your body to develop muscle memory and adapt to the movements, especially if you are new to dancing or new to dancing as a couple. However, if you are short on time or budget, then it is better to have a few lessons than no lessons at all; otherwise you will be swaying side to side like two junior high students.

What is the fastest way to learn?

By far, the fastest way to learn is to have two instructors, especially during the first few lessons.  Men learn to lead much more quickly when they learn with an experienced follow and women learn to follow much more quickly when following an experienced lead.  This saves you time and money. It also lessens the amount of “blame game” frustration between couples. You will gradually dance less with instructors and more with each other as the lessons progress.

ballroom dance
Boulder Ballroom: so bold, we’re not in Boulder.

Do the bride-to-be and groom-to-be both need to attend the dance lessons at the same time?

Actually, even when one person can’t show up, it is best if the other person comes to the lesson anyway.  When you learn one-on-one with the instructor, you gain so much insight about yourself and the way you move. It is actually quite freeing that you don’t have to worry about your partner being there.  So, in the case when one of you is busy, then have the other person come to the lesson, you will be able to gain quite a bit of material and be of better help to your partner when he or she comes to catch up.  Please let us know in advance.

What are some of the main differences between group and private lessons?  What are the advantages and disadvantages to each?

Group classes are great for people who enjoy learning with other people around and having the energy of a group dynamic.  It is also a cheaper way to learn the dance steps. However, they won’t help you understand lead and following skills on a deeper level and there is usually no time to talk about styling.  Plus, if you are doing something wrong, the instructor simply can’t give you the one-on-one attention you need to correct any mistakes. Bad habits can form as a result. In most ballroom dancing studios, there is an uneven number of guys and girls in a group class because it is not tailored for engaged couples. So, you will be asked to rotate and be separated as a couple, and one of you may end up waiting for your turn to dance, which can be a frustrating experience.  If you want to take group classes, ask if there is a class for couples only. Don’t eliminate group classes all together. Taking a group class can help you learn the steps quickly and give you the experience of dancing with other people so that you can start building confidence for dancing. You can add the private lessons alongside or after the group class so that you can really hone in your skills at a faster and more efficient pace.

Private lessons tailor towards your individual needs for the obvious reasons: personalized dance lessons plan, one-on-one attention, and correct and guided learning so you save time. money, and energy.  Most couples also feel safer to learn in a private environment instead of in a group with all the other people. However, it is more expensive than taking group classes. So, budget this investment early into your overall wedding plan.  Otherwise, you may not have the beautiful First Dance you had imagined at the beginning.

click here to set up your introductory lesson or to contact us with any questions you may have

Should the couple wear any specific types of shoes to their lessons?

An engaged couple should bring comfortable shoes with them that preferably have a smooth, flat bottom.  Tennis shoes tend to grip the floor too much, so the students may not be able to glide on the floor as easily.  We want you to twirl, not sprain your knee. For women, bring shoes that are similar to those you will be dancing with on your wedding day.   For men, regular dress shoes or even old Converse would work.

Learn to ballroom dance for your wedding today
Your Dance, Your Memories, Our Passion

What types of clothing should students wear to their dance lessons?

Most instructors probably don’t care what you dress.  My recommendation is to wear something more formal than a T-shirt and sneakers.  The way a person dresses can actually affect how he or she sees himself or herself.  If you are spending money, time, and energy on taking dance lessons, then take yourself seriously by wearing a nice outfit. Nothing over top is needed obviously.

What is the best way for a couple to select a wedding dance studio and/or an instructor?

Usually studios offer a trial lesson.  Even if they don’t, it’s good to try one lesson before you commit to it.  You have to like the instructor and his or her teaching style. Plus, sometimes you might end up in a large franchised dance studio that just wants to sell you different packages.  You may or may not like that kind of environment or the programs that they offer.

Does the couple typically bring their own music to each lesson?

It’s called the internet… If it’s on the internet, we’ll get it.

What if the bride-to-be or the groom-to-be is far more experienced in dance than their partner?  Is it still possible (and advisable) to take lessons together?

Yes, this happens often because a lot of the times the woman might have had ballet, jazz, or some other dance training.  However, it is not typical that one person knows how to do partner dancing and the other doesn’t. Either way though, it is a good idea to start taking lessons together.  It is a team effort. It doesn’t matter how good of a dancer you are, if your partner doesn’t know how to lead. It also doesn’t matter how good of a lead you are, if you partner doesn’t know how to follow your steps.  Remember, you are in this together, so definitely take lessons together. The dance lessons will help you build trust, intimacy, and partnership skills. You’ll be surprised by how much fun you can have together by working towards a common goal — your beautiful First Dance!

ballroom dance
Boulder Ballroom: so bold, we’re not in Boulder.

How far in advance should a couple start taking dance lessons before the big day?

The time frame varies depending how good you want to be at dancing together and how graceful and elegant you want to look.  I recommend the time frame of 3-6 months. Don’t put it off to the last minute! You will be shocked at how many ‘last minute crises’ arise in the weeks before your wedding.  Consistency is key. Putting aside a time each week for your dance lessons will really help you improve your dancing at a fast and consistent pace. Less time is spent reviewing material and more time is spent perfecting your dance.

Is a wedding dance usually a choreographed/pre-planned routine?

For most couples, and especially men who have never danced, it is best to have a choreographed dance routine so that you know exactly what to expect on the day of your wedding.  Of course, it is totally fine if the lead is comfortable leading and dancing in a more “free-style” way. Some people have are better “free-styling” than remembering the order of moves.  Either way, once you start your dance lessons, you will know what your comfort and confidence levels are. It really will impress your families and friends.

click here to set up your introductory lesson or to contact us with any questions you may have

What to Expect

What to expect:

We will…

1.  Assess your current dance levels and needs

Before we can begin your dance lessons, we will assess your dance levels and help you get clear on what you are looking to express on your wedding day.  That is why it is so important you book your 30-minute Introductory Private Lesson as soon as you are ready to start learning. It is both an opportunity for you to experience a dance lesson with me and for me to evaluate your needs and desires.  Some people want a few moves so they don’t look so awkward, and others really want to have a beautifully choreographed dance so that they can surprise and delight their guests at the wedding reception. Be smart and start early!

2.  Build your dance foundation

The first step in creating your First Dance is to build a strong foundation.  You will learn to walk with each other backwards, forwards, and sideways. We will teach you the basic foundational steps to your dance.  Once you get the basics, we can build everything from these fundamental movements. The addition of a second instructor helps students learn the foundation much faster, saving both time and money.

3.  Develop your lead-and-follow skills

Leading and following skills are relevant to real life as well as to partner dancing.  In a relationship, sometimes one person leads and makes decisions on certain aspects of the relationship or life, then the other person follows, and vice versa.  Dancing is a 50/50 partnership. It requires partnership. However, this partnership will shift to ~90/10 favoring the man when you first begin to learn to dance.  99% of women tend to man-handle the men when the men are supposedly “leading”. They grab the top of the man’s shoulder and do what is referred to as “back lead” so the gentleman won’t look bad.  Even though this is done with good intentions, we work to eliminate the back lead from the very first lesson. This act will not only make your dancing look incredible but it will also build trust, lead to a balanced partnership, and even enhance intimacy.

4.  Create a practice schedule

Practice and strategy are essential for effective learning. You will save money, time, and energy if you dedicate a certain amount of time each week to practicing.  It doesn’t have to be hours. Once or twice a week for 15 minutes is better than no practice at all. This is not rocket science, but it does require commitment and dedication on your part.  We can teach you everything we know, but at the end of the day, you are the ones who will be performing in front of all of your guests at the wedding. You will absolutely enjoy the fruit of your labor.

5.  Design an unique choreography

Once you have the foundation, a sense of leading and following, and the available days and times that you dedicate to practicing each week, we will start building your unique choreography.  You will learn different dance figures and various combinations of these movements step by step, without feeling overwhelmed by the whole choreography. It is about building one layer on top of another.  You will be able to dance for two minutes or so with a series of dance movements that you will have learned and memorized by your wedding day. (Songs are recommended to be two minutes or less to maintain the audiences’ attention.  We can trim a song down for you.)

6.  Practice in public

Public speaking and performing are the biggest fears of many people.  We have trained hundreds of couples and have developed a method to help our students overcome this fear.  Plain and simple: the couples that practiced more at home and practiced in public (at a bar, wedding, etc.) prior to their wedding had amazing first dances!  Their anxiety was lessened and confidence boosted. However, the couples that said, “We don’t need to practice, we got it, we’ll be fine” often “wished” they had practiced more.  We at Boulder Ballroom offer all students a night out dancing roughly ¾’s of the way through your lesson package. This strategy is unique to our company and will give you the edge necessary to dance in front of your friends and family members with style, grace, and confidence.

7.  Eye catching entrance

Your first impression is everything.  Once you get your main choreography down, we will show you how to enter the dance floor with confidence and grace.  As part of your choreography, we will teach you some dance etiquette. The groom will learn to invite the bride onto the dance floor and swirl her into dance position.  You will be bursting with confidence. Everything will have a natural flow from the moment when you enter into the room to when you actually start dancing.

8.  Finale

We want to help you finish your First Dance on a high note.  The energy of the entire dance will be carried to the very end so that your audience will be completely wowed and impressed by your hard work.  Once you are done learning the actual choreography, I will show you how to add some styling to your dance to make it more elegant and graceful, instead of boxy and stiff… and we will throw in a few dips here and there if the dress permits.

Click here to set up your Introductory Lesson today!

 

Your First Dance… Your Memories…

Our Passion…

We know that the First Dance on your Wedding Day can be a daunting experience. Cameras will be flashing, videos will be recorded, and all eyes will be on you. What do you want to see when you look back on that special moment? A confident expression of a blossoming partnership or two people swaying side to side? Whether you have two left feet or are waiting for ‘Dancing With The Stars’ to call, we can make your first dance unforgettable!

Wedding dance lessons first dance wedding dance song dance lessons

Boulder Ballroom provides affordable instruction to engaged couples with what should be the highlight of their wedding reception, the first dance. We have the experience and the know how to assist in all phases of making your first dance something special. Founder and choreographer, Andy Krogh, has been actively teaching and choreographing many styles of partnered dancing for the better part of a decade.  His choreography will capture the personalities of the bride and groom, making your first dance as unique as you.

We can also help with your music. Many couples today have more than one “our song”. They have two or three and just can’t choose which one to dance to. No problem. Music mixing (up to three songs) is included in our wedding package. And so is your choreography. We will choreograph and re-choreograph until you have a routine that you enjoy and that matches your personalities.

In the first few lessons, while you’re learning to dance and becoming familiar with your routine, we will make a video of us doing your choreography so you won’t forget anything before your big day.

Don’t want choreography? No problem. We can teach you some basic steps, turns, and dips that you can use whenever you’d like during your dance.