Last week, Bella Ballroom Dance Studio was nominated for a wedding trendsetter award for best new idea or concept in the wedding industry. The Trendsetter Awards, sponsored by the Association of Bridal Consultants – Orange County, was held this year at the beautiful St. Regis Hotel in Dana Point, CA. The event had a guest list of over 200 attendees and included the top wedding industry professionals in Orange County. We have a great time chatting with old friends, and making new industry connections.
Our award submission for best new wedding concept was a fun surprise first dance and wedding party flash mob. Kristine and Raul dreamed of stepping outside the box when it came to their first dance and we helped make their dream a reality. They envisioned a dance that would express the love they felt for each other as well as get the party started! They wanted to do something different and go beyond the traditional, slow first dance. So, we helped them choreograph a dance that involved their entire bridal party and included three of the couple’s favorite songs. Their guests had a blast with the surprise dance and the love they feel for each other shined throughout the entire routine.
Watch the video below for the 60 second highlight video of their wedding dance. We’ll be sure to include their entire dance soon!
Last Friday, November 15th was a night to remember, as Bella Ballroom students tore up the dance floor at the Balboa Bay Club with their dance moves! With a live band ready and willing to play any style we wished, students and instructors alike were able to try their hand at salsa, waltz, swing, and many others. With the dance party starting at 8:30pm, we so enjoyed ourselves that we shut down the place! It took them turning the lights off to get us to leave!
In addition to being a fun night of dancing, there were also fantastic food and delicious drinks to be had. As we shared a table and got to know each other, both students and teachers alike got the chance to get to know each other inside of and outside of the dance world.
Duke’s Place at the Balboa Bay Club in Newport Beach, CA has dancing every Friday night from 8:30 to 11:30pm! We go as a studio once a month and it is a great opportunity to practice your dance moves in a noninvasive, relaxed place that allows you to just have a fun time! So whether with us or if you’re brave enough to venture out on your own, please take advantage of this great dance space!
If this sounds like the right place for you to practice your moves, impress your friends (and instructor when you get back into the studio), or just to go out for a night of fun, let us give you a few tips:
- Parking is free!!! If you park on PCH. If you want to valet you have to eat at the restaurant, so just to give you a heads up.
- Again, the actual dance club is a free entrance fee.
- We go as a studio once a month, so please take advantage of our going together! You are not alone!
On October 20th, participants in Orange County viewed a film screening of a documentary called, “Though the Heart of the Tango” at the Irvine Civic Center Auditorium as part of the Silent River Film Festival. This heart-warming documentary is about 8 individuals including 3 with Autism and 1 with Down’s Syndrome learning to bond through tango dancing. The film includes renowned tango dance instructors Miriam Larici and Leonardo Barrionuevo who have both been featured on television’s “So You Think You Can Dance.”
We here at Bella Ballroom Dance Studio are very interested in the non-verbal communication that occurs through partner dancing and how this can be beneficial to all individuals, especially those with special needs and their families. There are several projects that we are becoming involved with on the subject and will be excited to share more about this down the road. If you are interested in learning more, watch the official trailer for the film above and visit: http://throughtheheartoftango.com
Bella Ballroom Dance Studio recently opened our brand dance studio! Just a few miles from our previous location, we are now next door to some amazing stores: Mon Amie Bridal, Friar Tux, David Salon, Cinderella Cakes, Flower Fusion, Essence Entertainment, and the Ayres Hotel. We love our brand new spot and so do our clients! Centrally located just minutes from John Wayne airport, it’s easy to get to from all over Orange County. We’re now at: 355 Bristol Street, Costa Mesa, CA.
We celebrated our new location in grand style! Our guests enjoyed music from our live jazz trio (with owner Jennelle’s husband on keyboard—Jennelle got up to sing a few songs with the band too!) Students and teachers performed as well—a foxtrot ballroom dancing performance from our student Don, a wedding dance routine by newly married Kate and Mike, and a high-energy swing routine (complete with flips and aerials) by instructor Joel and owner Jennelle. We all enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvres as well as custom Bella Ballroom Dance Studio cupcakes by Cinderella Cakes. They were so yummy! Flower Fusion provided beautiful flowers for the event and Essence Entertainment gave us our cool “mood lighting.” It was a fabulous event (if we do say so ourselves!) and we can’t wait for the next one!
We love visitors so please feel free to check out our new studio anytime!
Bella Ballroom will be at the Love Tour Bridal Show tomorrow, October 23rd from 6-9 pm at Rancho Las Lomas! Guests will enjoy a glass of OneHope wine while snacking on small bites from 24 Carrots. Live music, a vintage photo booth, awesome giveaways, and our white tigers will have couples roaring! Featuring Sweet Lucie’s ice cream, florals from Inviting Occasion and gorgeous furniture from Found Vintage Rentals, Blush Bridal Couture, Ampersand Ink Designs to name a few, The Love Tour will help you make a major dent in your wedding to-do list.
Bella Ballroom Dance Studio will be doing two FREE DANCE LESSONS giveaways at the event. But you must be present to win–so join us tomorrow to meet fantastic wedding and event professionals! This will be an event to remember (we are so excited to attend!) so get your tickets now.
For more information and to buy tickets, visit: http://www.weddinglovetour.com
We’ve all heard the saying, “Practice makes perfect!” And when it comes to dancing, that’s absolutely correct! Many people talk about the concept of “muscle memory” when it comes to developing dancing skills. It’s the idea that through practice, the muscles will move automatically without having a lot of concentrated thought. An example of this is walking: a young toddler requires a lot of deliberate effort at first in order to step one foot in front of the other, but eventually gets to the point where she/he can walk without thinking about it. And we can do this with any physical skill we study so that way we can automatically ride that bike, swing a golf club, etc. There isn’t yet consensus about scientists about how exactly muscle memory works, but there is enough evidence that shows that it can occur.
In ballroom and partner dancing, there is always a great desire among students to get to that “automatic” dancing place. And it makes sense! Instead of worrying about the movements, it’s much more fun to be in the moment with your partner and enjoy each other’s company, rather than counting the beat or over-concentrating on dance steps. That’s why in dance classes, we spend time with repetition so that students feel like the dance steps come automatically. However, students who practice outside of their dance classes, even just for a few minutes each week, will feel their muscle memory improve greatly! There really isn’t such a thing as too much practice in dancing. However, we know that most of our clients are very busy, so even just 5 or 10 minutes of practicing each week (just a few minutes is really all you need!) will really help your dancing feel more fluid, comfortable, and automatic.
Note: keep in mind that you need to be performing your dance moves correctly for practicing to be effective. If you are unsure of your dance moves, it would be better to hold off on practicing and ask your dance instructor about it at your next class.
So, move that coffee table in your living room, turn on your favorite dance song and get practicing!
We here at Bella Ballroom Dance Studio wanted to share a fun contest we just learned about! Couples: Do you have a great engagement or wedding story? If so, share your wedding story at Cuisinart.com’s website for a chance to win some great prizes from Cuisinart! You can submit as many stories as you want and the most loved stories will win some fun goodies. Some of the prizes they are giving away are blenders, food processors, and a coffee maker. Great things to have or update in your home, right? Click on the photo below to be directed to their website. Start sharing those funny, beautiful, endearing moments! Good luck!
CBS News recently featured a popular YouTube wedding dance video on their blog, “CBS News, The Feed.” This beautiful video, originally posted by photographer Michael LaFrance, features the wedding of a lovely bride and highlights her amazing family and friends coming together to give her a special dance. Unfortunately, the bride’s father had passed away earlier in the year from pancreatic cancer. So, her brother recorded the song “Butterfly Kisses” and she danced with her brother and other family members and friends during the Father and Daughter dance. The bride’s first dance is with her grandfather, followed by her two brothers, and her new father-in-law. This is such a touching and up-lifting video and we wanted to share it! Click on the video below to watch.
We hope you enjoyed this beautiful video as much as we did. It is so wonderful to see family and friends coming together to bring joy to a difficult moment. We want to wish the bride and her husband the best of luck in their new marriage! We hope they and their families have many more dancing moments together!
Each month we invite our clients to a dancing night out on the town. It’s a great way to practice the skills everyone has been working on in their dance classes in a fun, supportive environment and to try out their dancing skills in the “real world” outside of the dance studio. Many of our clients are learning to dance for an upcoming wedding or party and this is a great way to have a “practice run” before the big event. This month, we went to the beautiful Balboa Bay Club in Newport Beach, CA. Each night, the Duke’s Place lounge features live musicians who play a variety of different music: pop, jazz, Latin, oldies, rock n roll, and more. It’s a great mix of music and is perfect for all the dance styles our students are learning like Swing, Salsa, Cha Cha, Waltz, Foxtrot, Ballroom, Rumba—just to name a few.
Sometimes it can be a little intimidating to get up and dance, especially for our students who are new to dancing. So, these events are more about getting together, having a fun time, and meeting other dancers—no one is ever pressured to dance until they feel ready. The excellent part about the Balboa Bay Club is that they have a full bar and great appetizers. Some of our clients’ favorite things on the menu is the Tuna Tartar, Lobster Bisque, and buffalo wings.
We had a fantastic time dancing this past Friday evening and want to thank all of our students who joined us! The Mark Le Brun Trio with Angela Carol Brown were fantastic and kept us dancing and eating all night long. If you are a dancing student interested in attending our monthly events, please send us a message or give us a call, and we’ll add you to our email list. See you at the next event!
Now that the holidays have come and gone, it’s the beginning of what we in the industry call Wedding Season in Orange County! Brides and grooms-to be are busy planning and making important decisions in preparation for their big day. One of those considerations is the first dance, since many would like to get beyond the “eighth grade sway” for that important moment when all of their guests will be watching them. We receive many questions from our Orange County wedding dance couples regarding preparations for the first dance and we’d like to address one of them today:
“How long should our first dance be?”
This is a very popular question and the short answer is that it’s up to you! It’s your wedding day and your first dance and you are welcome to dance for as long (as or short!) as you would like. However, there are a few thoughts you may want to keep in mind. If you are doing an involved choreographed routine, for example, it may feel overwhelming to learn full choreography for an entire 4 or 5 minute song. As a frame of reference, “Dancing With the Stars” routines are only 1 minute and 10 seconds long. If you plan to do a lot of rehearsals, then it is still possible to learn a routine for a whole song. In general, we recommend keeping the song to under 3 minutes. There are a few different ways to do this. A popular option is to do a “fade out” where you slowly fade out the song at around the 2 or 3 minute mark. Other couples opt to do a professional music edit (this is something that we provide at our dance studio) where they may cut and edit together different sections of the music. For example, you may want to cut out the middle bridge section of the song or shorten repetitive parts of the music. With a professional music edit, the song will sound like it was meant to be that way and likely only the couple will know that it’s been shortened. Other options include walking onto the dance floor during the introduction of the music or using the end of the song to make an exit.
Keep in mind these are only suggestions and it is always up to each couple and their personal preferences for their wedding. A first dance song can have significant meaning for many couples and because of this they may want to dance to the entire song. That’s fantastic! The most important thing is that couples feel great for their first dance moment and have a wonderful time dancing together for the first time as a married couple.