Sunday, January 13, 2013

Jewish-ish Wedding Traditions- The Hora

Wow. Final Jewish wedding post! We've come so far! Well this last tradition is definitely the most fun. There is no question that we will be including it! It is probably the one thing I've been looking most forward to since I was a little girl.

The Hora is a circle dance that didn't start out as a Jewish dance but originated in Eastern European countries. In 1924 it was first danced in Israel and Jews everywhere haven't looked back since! It is a Jewish wedding staple and is commonly danced to the song Hava Nagila. The basic look of the dance is that everyone stands in a circle and holds hands. Then they move their left foot forward to the right, right foot forward to the right, left foot back, right foot back, and it starts over. Pretty simple. Also easy to fake if you don't get the precise footwork correct, just keep moving in the same direction as everyone else! The best part of the Hora is that the bride and groom are lifted up in chairs by some strong male wedding guests for the duration of the dance!

J actually found a fun punk version of Hava Nagila sung by the Me First, and the Gimme Gimmes that we're going to try to use at our wedding to bring a little of him into the tradition!

The Hora is good times had by all. It's always funny to watch the bride and groom worry about falling out of their chair and it's something that everyone can join in. For evidence of the fun and hilarity, I give you my beautiful cousins' in all of their Hora glory!

(If you look closely at the men hoisting the second bride, you'll see J!)

This next shot is hands down my favorite picture from a hora ever! 

Who can deny the fun after seeing those shots? 

Thanks for reading along with me while I worked through which customs from my heritage to include and which to toss! I'm excited to see them all come together in April! 

Final tally:

1. Ketubah signing- IN
2. Chuppah- IN
3. Separation- OUT
4. The Covering of the Bride- Half IN Half OUT
5. The Procession/Unterfieres- IN
6. Encircling of the Groom- IN
7. The Betrothal/Ring Ceremony- IN
8. The Kiddush- OUT
9. The Seven Blessings- OUT
10. The Breaking of the Glass- IN
11. Yichud- IN
12. The Hora- IN 



  1. Hi Dana. I am new to your blog (and blogging generally) but your most recent post has me hooked. I am getting married in April too and am in the process of sorting through the traditions that we will embrace and the ones we will let go (Jewish and Christian wedding). I am going to take a closer look at your older posts but it would be great to connect since I am planning to feature a few wedding tradition related posts before the big day.

    Mazel Tov.


    1. Amanda,

      Congrats on your upcoming nuptials! So glad you enjoyed the post. I'd love to chat with you more about Jewish wedding traditions. I've done a lot of reasearch on them for my blog (and my wedding) so I'd be glad to give help where I can! You can email me at danasalinger{at}gmail{dot}com.