Glide Through Life

Glide Through Life | Pre-wedding dance lessons teach you way more than just how to dip and twirl

Stamina, dedication, and the ability to laugh at your partner without fear of having a shoe thrown at your head: these are the pillars of a sturdy relationship. Learn them early in your marriage and you’re set. Learn them before you even hit the wedding dance floor, and you’re simply golden. Take Nicole Bulone and Danny Bushond, for example. The pair had wanted to do something special for their first dance and when Nicole’s mother heard, she signed them up for dance lessons as a gift. “We had absolutely no dance experience,” laughs Nicole. “But we’re both pretty big showoffs, so we wanted to do a good job!” Enter Angie Baker, owner of Mount Pleasant’s Dance Carolina, who estimates that she welcomes one newly engaged couple every six weeks—most of them nervous newbies. “The first thing I always ask is ‘Do you have a song?’” she says. “If they haven’t decided that yet, it prompts them to make a decision, and that’s one less thing for them to stress about.” While the fox trot, waltz, and box step are the most popular ballroom dances (and, says Angie, the easiest to learn), Nicole and Danny chose the complicated—and saucy—cha-cha for their debut. “We were dedicated,” says Nicole, “so we practiced a lot. And on our wedding day, we got a standing ovation.” But as Angie knows, pre-wedding dance lessons are far more than a means to an end; for one thing, says Nicole, “It really took the edge off our nerves.” And that’s important, says Angie. “When you’re preparing for a wedding, you’ve got a lot on your plate,” she says, “But you show up for a lesson and you forget all that. You just concentrate on the steps.” Most importantly, though, the focus on teamwork and compromise can help set a precedent for a balanced life together after the wedding. “A dance lesson typically becomes a relationship lesson,” says Angie. “One partner is always a little uneasy at first, and it’s usually the man—which is tricky, because the man has to lead—but gradually, both learn to give and take. Although it’s always funny to see the girl struggling to give up her lead!” For Nicole and Danny, they say more dance lessons are in their future, even though that first cha-cha was long ago. “Spending time together and learning something new to both of us was very romantic,” says Nicole. And who doesn’t want to keep romance alive? Ballroom Plus 89 Toura Lane West Ashley (843) 769-6073 Dance Carolina 2700 Highway 17N, Suite 180-K Mount Pleasant (843) 388-9367 Fred Astaire Dance Studio of Charleston 1850 Wallace School Road West Ashley (843) 769-0440 Trudy’s School of Dance 830 Folly Road James Island (843) 795-8660