Reception Parent Dances
Many couples schedule a father + daughter and mother + son dance during wedding receptions.
These dances are a great opportunity to honor your parents. I also like to mention that these dances also offer an opportunity to say special and meaningful things to your parents that might otherwise go unsaid outside of these important moments.
Parent dances should immediately follow the first dance.
Two Dances, Two Songs
Some couples are tempted to combine the father + daughter and mother + son dance into a single song where both couples are on the dance floor at the same time.
However, I recommend that both father + daughter and mother + son have separate songs and their own dedicated time on the dance floor.
First, having separate songs honors each parent individually and provides an undiluted moment with parent and child. This approach typically makes the dance more special to both the parent and the child.
From a photographic perspective, separate dances allow me to focus on a single couple rather than split my photographic time across two couples. As a Houston-area wedding photographer, I can't tell you how many times combined dances have presented insurmountable photographic difficulties.
As you might imagine, with two people dancing and moving, there are only a few moments during each dance where both parent and child have their faces simultaneously visible. And if there are two couples on the dance floor, there's the big challenge of capturing meaningful candid moments where both parents and both children have amazing expressions while dancing.
And finally, imagine the end of the song. If there are two parents hugging two children simultaneously, that hug lasts only a second, and with two couples on the dance floor some part of that exchange will be missed. That's why I recommend that each parent have their own dedicated dance.
Like the first dance, each parent dance takes approximately 5 minutes from beginning to end—depending on the length of each song.