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Wedding Dances: Stevie Wonder & The Goo Goo Dolls

Today was all about cutting music! First up, Stevie Wonder’s “Isn’t She Lovely” for a surprise Father/Daughter Dance. The song is a fantastic swing, but also comes in at a whopping 6.5 minutes! Far too long to hold an audience’s attention. After removing the intro, first chorus, and ending, we have a perfect 2 minute cut. I believe my student and his daughter will be quite pleased. Now on to the tricky part of choreographing a dance with the father that the daughter can “blindly follow”. This is a rather unique situation in that the father is learning the dance here in Utah, and is going to surprise his daughter at her wedding in Boston at the end of August. The bride is only aware that her father chose a song, but she won’t know that he is taking lessons or is learning a choreographed routine. That puts a lot of pressure on me to ensure that not only does my student know the routine inside and out, but also that he can truly lead his daughter without her knowing any of the steps or patterns. (I will talk more about a typical wedding lesson in a later blog post)

The second cut for the day featured “Come to Me” by The Goo Goo Dolls for a traditional first dance. Once again, the song in its entirety is just too long and repetitive, so the challenge is finding a balance between lyrics, interest, and length. My students decided remove the second verse and chorus in order to keep the song at a manageable, but still hefty 2.5 minutes. The major challenge with this song is the tempo. It’s not quite slow enough for a nightclub or a foxtrot, but its almost too slow for a comfortable swing. Even though time is on our side (their wedding is late September), we’re having trouble striking a balance between enough variety to keep the dance interesting, and not so much variety that remembering the routine becomes overwhelming. I can’t wait to see how it turns out!

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