With the recent pandemic and wedding receptions being put on hold, or only being permitted with limited numbers, whilst observing restrictive social distancing parameters, I have noticed that there has been a significant number of couples commenting in various Facebook Wedding Groups that even if they fell within the restrictions, they would not consider having their wedding reception, because of the “no dancing” restriction. No or limited dancing appears to be the biggest ‘deal breaker’ in proceeding with their wedding.
The reason for this is obvious! A wedding reception is a celebration of love. Communities, religions and individuals world-wide celebrate marriage as it is a rite of passage, the joining together of two people who’ve decided to turn two lives into one. Many couples have already pictured their wedding filled with smiles, laughter, fun and the creation of much joy and excitement (after all, isn’t this what timeless memories are made of?), and accordingly, are not prepared to compromise on their dream wedding.
Image Courtesy of The Loved Ones
Why are they not willing to compromise? One of the major elements of any celebration is dancing. People just love to dance! In some cultures, it is ingrained in their heritage. Dancing is the single greatest opportunity guests will have to collectively express the happiness they hold for the couple and when they all join together on the dance floor and create an energy that can only be generated by those that are endeared by the couple, it is quite the moment, plus lots of fun!.
The Facebook Wedding Groups are filled with comments such as; “What’s a wedding without dancing? 😭”, “A wedding is not a wedding without dancing.”, “Now we can have all our loved ones at our wedding but no dancing? It’s not a wedding without it. 😢”, “No wedding is complete without dancing.”, “I’m not having a wedding without dancing 😑” and many more similar posts by couples who in the midst of a pandemic, are realising the real impact that entertainment has on a wedding reception and it is far, far greater than many thought it may have been prior to having been placed in a position where they now need to choose between having a wedding with no dancing or postponing until they are permitted to have dancing.
Over the years, numerous surveys conducted with couples following their wedding, have unanimously revealed that couples, would have spent more money on quality entertainment, if they had known the true impact that it would have on creating wonderful wedding memories prior to the wedding. Sadly however, it is the element which, except in the most minor of instances, is not given the priority warranted and left to very late in the planning process, by which time, they find that the majority of the budget has been depleted and many, are subsequently potentially constrained to a low cost and/or less experienced option.
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One major reason that couples have not appreciated the value that professional entertainment brings to their wedding, I feel is largely due that for far too long many wedding publications, venues, wedding planners and coordinators have referred to wedding entertainment as “the music” which has led to most couples undervaluing the importance of exceptional, personalised wedding entertainment. However, the reality is that music cannot create a successful reception by itself and is just one element which factors into the entertainment equation, otherwise couples would not be reacting the way they have been, in regards to the no dancing restriction.
Some of the other elements for providing great entertainment include setting the tone, ensuring the smooth flow of proceedings, seamless transitions, keeping the guests engaged, constantly reading the crowd, programming skills, room layout, knowing how to create special moments, excitement and much more! If all these elements are executed correctly, couples are much more likely to have a dance floor filled with family and friends celebrating with them actually creating those wonderful memories they envisioned.
In conclusion, my hope is that this pandemic will shortly be a distant memory and that all couples who have had their wedding plans disrupted can proceed with the wedding celebration of their dreams. I also hope that future couples will now better appreciate the real impact that entertainment has on the success of their wedding celebration and prioritise securing the entertainment, be it an MC, DJ or Live Musicians, not only far earlier in the planning process, but also allowing a more appropriate percentage of the budget to secure experienced and professional, seasoned entertainers who will ensure that their dreams are realised.
Image Courtesy of Jack Chauvel Photography