As a wedding planner, I get to know many creative and inspiring people working in the wedding industry. Thanks to these people, every wedding becomes an amazing and unique celebration.
One of the most important, emotional, and beautiful moments of the wedding is the couple’s first dance.
I recently interviewed a talented professional dance teacher, Julia Bobovik, the founder of the Dance Stream studio in Newton, MA, to learn more about her art and how it can be incorporated beautifully into a wedding.
- Julia, where were you born and raised? - I was born in Ukraine, but from the age of eight I lived in Israel, in Haifa.
- How long have you been dancing? - I started to study ballroom dancing at the age of 15: I was fond of swing, rock'n'roll, and interested in the competitive aspect of dancing. I was lucky to find a great studio and was allowed to have a test lesson in an advanced group, and it turned out that I could instantly grab the movements of jive and other dances. Soon I had a partner, we quickly started participating in competitions and soon became champions of Israel in our category. Later, with another partner, we became champions of Israel in the most difficult professional category.
- When did you start teaching? - I started teaching at the age of 16, first as an assistant, and then independently, teaching different dances. I teach almost everything except for hip-hop. For the last 11 years I've been teaching in the USA.
- What music is popular among couples who come to you to stage their First dance? - Modern couples always try to pick up something distinctive, to differentiate their dance from others, and they come to me with a variety of melodies. Often this is a combination of two different songs. I help them to choreograph it into a beautiful dance.
- How old are the couples coming to you? - Usually it's people from 25 to 40 years old. My former students often come, bringing their fiancé(e)s.
- How long does the dance last? - The dance should not last more than 3 minutes, often it is shorter. Learning the movements for a three-minute dance is a lot of work. Especially for people who don’t really dance in life. At the wedding, they will first have to come together in front of everyone, and to stay in the spotlight when all the attention is on them. This can sometimes be difficult to enjoy and may cause some stress. And besides, the guests get tired if the dance is too long. I help to adapt the music so that it does not last longer than this time.
- What happens when one of the partners does not have the ability to dance well or a sense of rhythm? - Good choreography always allows you to find a way to make the dance beautiful. You can give more movement to the one who does better, leaving the simpler movements to someone who has more trouble. The choreographed pauses help as well - when the dancers freeze for a few seconds, posing. This is a relaxation moment for them, and a wonderful opportunity for pictures and applause.
- How many lessons does it typically take to prepare the dance? - When the couple comes to me for the first time I give them a free consultation-lesson. I find out when their wedding is and how much time they are able to dedicate to the dance preparation. Depending on this, the number of lessons is determined. If time is short, you can do everything within five lessons: choose one song with a couple of elements, one - two poses, and a bow. If there is an opportunity to take 10 lessons, it allows you to put the dance based on two melodies, starting from slow and accelerating the tempo, adding movements and poses. I recommend, if possible, to start classes 6 months before the wedding, practice the choreography, and dedicate the last few lessons to polishing the dance.
- What other tips can you give to a young couple? - I recommend discussing with me the style and length of the dress, so that it does not interfere with their dance, but on the contrary, makes the dance more spectacular. Some brides change into another dress after the ceremony, which is lighter and more adapted for the dance floor.
Also, I always advise the couple to show their prepared dance to my students (I conduct group classes for children). This enables the couple to experience the feeling of having an audience, overcome the stress associated with it, so that at the actual wedding they can give their whole heart to the dance and to their love without thinking of anything else!
Don't forget to check Yulia's social media: www.dancestreamstudio.com; Instagram @dancestreamstudio, FB page: Dance Stream Studio