NYMag: Minn. wedding dance one of the best musical theater pieces of the year


If you haven't seen or heard of the Minnesota wedding processional dance that turned into a YouTube phenomenon last week, you're probably living under a rock. The video has been linked to on almost every major news site and the couple has appeared on national morning TV shows. They even recreated their boogie down the aisle on NBC with the wedding party backing them up.

Nearly 9 million people have viewed the YouTube clip and many are wondering how this came to be such a hit with people around the world.

New York Magazine's Dan Kois called it one of the best pieces of musical theater this year. Impressive, right? Kois is able to eloquently sum up what makes this video so magical to everyone who watches it.

Watch the original video here.

Kois notes that the more than 8 million viewers surpasses the total tickets sold on Broadway this year and the audience of the average episode of So You Think You Can Dance. He says it is easily the most-watched musical-theater number this year.

A wedding is really nothing more than the single play that most people will have a chance to direct, he says. The intense planning, rehearsals, scripts, lighting, all come into play just like a theatrical production with a budget funded through your loved ones. And you're telling the story of a couple coming together in marriage.

Kois explains why this video shows a wedding that is touching people who don't even know the couple:

The results can be tremendously moving, though rarely for anyone who isn't already close to the bride and groom. That's why the Peterson-Heinz dance party video is so surprising: It's delightful even to the 99.9999 percent of Americans who've never met these two Minnesotans, because the story it tells is so universal.

The story it tells is not just the story of Jill and Kevin -- though obviously it's their story too -- but of the joy that every bride and groom (or bride and bride) (or groom and groom) has felt as they walked down the aisle. The audience -- in the church, and 8 million strong and counting out in the world -- feels it. Intentionally or not, as a piece of theater, Jill and Kevin's big musical number is courtship in microcosm: wildness and improvisation giving way over the course of time to steady, comfortable companionship. A crowd of friends are there to back them up. Out of the storm of many, two.