Party Ideas, Weddings

3 Easy Steps to Get People Dancing at a Wedding Reception

By Megan Price

Every bride wants to make sure their guests are having a good time at their wedding! Especially when it’s time to party at the reception. Nothing says “successful reception” like seeing all of your guests out of their seats dancing the night away. But how do you get them on the floor? We have some tips to get people dancing at a wedding reception! 


1. Set the Mood… Lighting

If you’re throwing a party, bringing the lights down is a must! No one wants to dance under harsh bright lights, so give your guests a place to hide their not-so-professional dance moves. When the lights are dimmed, courage increases and people are more likely to head to the floor! Talk to your venue about lighting options and test them out ahead of time. If you’re hiring a DJ or a wedding band, sometimes they can provide fun lighting options to create a great atmosphere. There are also lighting pros out there who can professionally set the mood for the perfect dance party!

Get People Dancing at a Wedding Reception

2. Recruit Your Wedding Party

If you want to get people dancing at a wedding reception, don’t make them be the first on the floor. For others to follow, someone has to get the dancing started. Luckily, you’ll have a whole group of party-starters at your fingertips! Encourage your wedding party to grab a partner from the crowd and pull them onto the dance floor. Grab your groom and head to the middle of the crowd and do your part! Most people love dancing at weddings, they just don’t want to be the first to kick up their heels.


Get People Dancing at a Wedding Reception

3. Create a Killer Playlist

Upbeat music is a no-brainer at getting people dancing at a wedding! The easiest option for having great dance music is to hire a professional DJ or wedding band. After all, they make their living with music. By reading the crowd, they can tweak the playlist or set list to get your guests up and dancing!

Get People Dancing at a Wedding Reception

If you’re providing your own tunes, make sure you include some classic (and newer) dance music. Since you already know who you’re inviting to the wedding, you can take the age and energy level of your guests into account. When building your wedding dance playlist, use the danceable classics at the beginning to get the crowd on the floor. Then move into newer songs as the older crowd starts to leave. Save your favorite newer hits for late in the night! Here’s a quick playlist example that transitions into different genres:

  • Signed, Sealed, Delivered by Stevie Wonder
  • Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye
  • Love Shack by The B-52s
  • The Way You Make Me Feel by Michael Jackson
  • Build Me Up Buttercup by The Foundations
  • Walking On Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves
  • Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey
  • Jump In the Line by Harry Belafonte
  • I Wanna Dance with Somebody by Whitney Houston
  • Pour Some Sugar On Me by Def Leppard
  • Hold On by Wilson Phillips
  • You Are the Best Thing by Ray LaMontagne
  • My Lovin’ (Never Gonna Get It) by En Vogue
  • Say Hey (I Love You) by Michael Franti and the Spearhead
  • Now That We Found Love by Heavy D and the Boyz
  • Hollaback Girl by Gwen Stefani
  • Uptown Funk by Bruno Mars
  • Magic by B.o.B and Rivers Cuomo
  • Bang Bang by Jessie J, Ariana Grande, and Nicki Minaj
  • Crazy in Love by Beyonce

The main thing is to have fun! And your guests are sure to follow. Enjoy the big day!


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