Since 2007 (wow time has flown), I have been chosen by couples to be their belly dancer for wedding events all across Orlando and the state of Florida. During this time, I have learned a thing or two about how to create shows that respect all of the beautiful countries from which my clients hail from, and the level of performance that my clients should expect.

Weddings are one of the most special moments a person will have in their lives, and I can say that from my own experience. All of those years of event planning and helping brides and grooms figure out what special touches we could incorporate and balancing each of their culture’s needs came quite in handy.

What if you are a couple that doesn’t belong to a culture that celebrates by hiring a bellydancer? What then? What if you have an affinity for the music and culture but you simply do not know where to start? Read on for help with some of the most common questions I come across from Non-Middle Eastern, North African and Turkish (MENAT) clients.

If you are from the culture and want to incorporate a bellydancer for wedding-related events and of course, the reception, then read on as I have a few creative ways to make your wedding stand out from all of the other weddings you have attended where a bellydancer was present.

Should I Hire a Belly Dancer for Wedding Events?

The answer is just about always YES! Often times non-MENAT brides and grooms will call me telling me that they have an Arabian themed or Moroccan themed wedding and want entertainment and aren’t sure what having a belly dancer at their wedding will be like.

Orlando is a wedding city, it is full of gorgeous venues, a variety of cultural delights and loads of tourists jaja. As such, entertainment can be found everywhere, although private event performances are so much more than the everyday restaurant gig. If you truly want to know what to expect, it is important that you review as much current footage of the bellydancer as possible. Your wedding day is going to be recorded and you want to make sure that when you review the video each year, that every detail and the main bellydance show was absolutely phenomenal.

“Jennifer was very professional and did an amazing performance for my wedding reception. She incorporated various styles and entertained my husband and I and all the guests very well. Thank you Jennifer!” – Dhilona Viland

I can’t tell you how many times I have clients who had horror stories because their friends or they themselves simply didn’t look at video. There are plenty of gorgeous dancers out there. The focus needs to be on a skilled belly-DANCER. Look at our dance technique and style, our charisma and speak with us over the phone. You want to go with someone who has experience, awards, and plenty of weddings under their belt so they make your life stress-free when planning the entertainment at your wedding.

If you aren’t MENAT that is 100% ok! I perform at just as many non-MENAT events as I do for MENAT clients. It is a beautiful and unique form of entertainment that everyone of all ages can enjoy. If you contact me, you will see that I explain the different shows in detail, guide you through what is customary vs. modern, answer your questions and even make life easy by coordinating with your planner and vendors. Hiring an experienced bellydancer to entertain at your wedding is not scary. No need to worry!

Has There Ever Been A Time Where Having a Bellydancer Wasn’t Such a Good Idea At a Wedding?

Yes. If one side of your family is devout Muslim, Morman, or of another religion where having a dancer in a two piece and playing loud music around will cause a commotion, I do not recommend that you hire one for your wedding or events leading up to it. I had one situation a year ago where a friend of the groom hired me to entertain at the wedding reception as a surprise (quite common) and she had heard the brides side was a bit “conservative”. I asked her if they were devout Muslim, if I should wear a dress if they weren’t devout, and any other items that are the norm…the client innocently though the bride’s family was just a little conservative and that a two piece would be fine as she saw my pictures and liked that I presented myself very tastefully always.

Upon entering the reception hall, it became clear that they were in prayer. All music was off, and after the prayer the meal began. I performed and halfway through my show the music was turned off early and the d.j. announced my departure. The bride’s family ended up being HIGHLY devout, and thus bellydance entertainment at a wedding was not suitable. The groom’s side was less conservative and they gave me plenty of smiles and clapping, but all in all, it is important that both sides be fine with this type of entertainment BEFORE hiring the dancer in a scenario such as this. Make sense? Everyone was nice, it simply wasn’t a fit.

What Other Wedding Entertainment Ideas Do You Recommend?

If you want the absolute best entertainment in Orlando, combining a gorgeous bellydance show with live music is simply unbeatable. Everyone can feel the “DUM’s” and “Tak’s” of the Tabla/Darbuka drum as it fills the room and accurately accents the dancer’s movements. As a top bellydancer for weddings in Orlando and across the state, I can tell you without bias, that when I compare the level of energy in a room with a live band accompanying the dancer versus an iPod, the band always wins! The sheer energy, vibrations, and impression it leaves is invigorating.

If having a live band perform with me is out of the question budget wise, enjoying tea and henna is a lovely option in the days leading up to the wedding. I have often taught classes and provided short, lighter shows for pre-wedding events.

If you love the extravagant and want to make your wedding show the wedding of the decade, having an all-out Zeffa at the wedding is quite impressive. Imagine 12-20 musicians in two rows with the bellydancer and wedding party as they walk from the ceremony site to the reception location. Lanterns lighting the way, a shamadan blazing in the front, and the looks of awe as onlookers take this spectacle in.

“If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur”

-Red Adair

Why Should I Hire Bellydance By Jennifer, Inc. To Bellydance at My Wedding?

This one is easy….

  • I am a triple crown world champion winner – I flew to Germany for the world championship, and won 1st place in Oriental, 1stplace in Folkore, and 1strunner up in Fusion – I know my stuff!
  • I have been performing at weddings and event in Orlando and across the country for over 11 years!
  • My standards are HIGH! If a vendor isn’t doing their job, I will be your personal entertainment police. Everything must be perfect for your show, no exceptions. I take my job very seriously and all of the reviews online are a testament to the level of detail, service, and communication devoted to each and every wedding and event.
  • The training continues. I have never stopped training. Every 2 months I am taking workshops across the globe, learning new material, studying more in-depth to learn more facts and customs of the various cultures I am learning the dance steps from, and etc. If you pay for a bellydance show, you should expect to see that, not a “Shakira” inspired performance by a novice that is more Latin-inspired than MENAT.
  • I was an event planner, so needless to say I show up early, I have a contract to not let you down, and every detail is planned for and ready ahead of time so that the day of your show, the entertainment is flawless.
  • I have worked with many professionals in the industry from planners to D.J.’s to linens to the caterer and etc. While you may be planning your first wedding, this is in the hundreds for me at this point and for many of my wedding partners. Needless to say, don’t stress, I can provide recommendations to help you along the way in creating the perfect wedding day.

Hire a Belly Dancer For a Wedding Party!

wedding reception entertainment in orlando

Weddings can be quite expensive, I know, I had to make budgetary decisions for my wedding too. But the difference having quality, luxury entertainment makes is quite massive! Personally, I had a live Jamaican trio band for my cocktail hour, followed by a bellydance featuring some Lebanese Debke and then we finished the night off with music from around the world to showcase all of the cultures that we love with our talented DJ. Where some weddings are quiet and simply more of a “dinner”, we wanted to leave guests with a fun experience like no other. If you are ready to do the same with your own unique character and flair, contact me.

Let’s Work Together!

If you are ready to hire a bellydancer for a wedding party or reception in Orlando and beyond, I am a call away! If you have grown up where bellydancers are always present at every major wedding, or milestone, let’s work together to make yours over the top and unique. I look forward to working with you, and please feel free to contact me with any questions regarding your wedding.

Thank you for the data!