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Are flowers/gifts appropriate at a child's dance recital?
June 11, 2007 10:20 AM   Subscribe

This Saturday is our seven year old niece's first dance recital. Please help me find an appropriate gift, or determine if a gift is even appropriate.

I come from a family where something like this would certainly deem a small gift, perhaps just a small bouquet of flowers. My husband's family is not as materially demonstrative as my own (niece is my BIL's daughter). I adore this child, and want to mark it as being a special moment in her life, however I don't want to go overboard.

For those of you who have been to the dance recitals of small children - what is commonly done? Are flowers completely out of place, embarassing? We don't see our niece and nephew often enough (family dynamic issues that can not be altered) but I would like to express my delight in being invited to see her dance, as well as remind her how special she is to me. I will certainly express this to her verbally, and know that showing up counts for something, but I'd like to do something nice as well. Unless it's completely out of place and would just draw bad attention to her/us. Any suggestions are welcome. Thank you.
posted by librarianamy to Human Relations (26 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
In our town a bouquet is the usual gift, presented immediately after the show among much hugging and photography with siblings, etc. Your neice's parents might be planning to give her this, in fact. But a 7 year old girl can't have too many bouquets of flowers.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 10:28 AM on June 11, 2007


Flowers would be nice. It's hard to go wrong with flowers.
posted by GuyZero at 10:28 AM on June 11, 2007


When I was in elementary school and doing ballet, I loved getting flowers. It made me feel very adult. I don't think I ever got any other material items, though I always went out for ice cream with my family after recitals, which I also loved to do.

This, of course, was 20-some years ago, though.
posted by occhiblu at 10:30 AM on June 11, 2007


As a veteran of many, many dance recitals, I say go with the flowers. I always felt like a princess, dressed in my tutu and tights with my arms loaded with flowers. Plus, when you're a little girl, you see people give your mom and female relatives flowers, but nobody ever really gives them to you, so that makes it feel very special.
posted by mostlymartha at 10:31 AM on June 11, 2007


As a kid, nothing made me beam more than being presented with a bouquet of flowers after a ballet recital. It made me feel like a real ballerina. So I would say flowers would not be out of place at all (I seem to remember most of my classmates getting them too), and they will probably make her day. A little card saying exactly what you said here -- that you were delighted to see her dance, and that she is very special to you -- would be a nice touch as well.
posted by AV at 10:33 AM on June 11, 2007


How about taking along your video camera, recording the event (so parents don't have to, they can just watch and enjoy), and putting together a DVD for her with titles , credits, fades and all the bells and whistles???
posted by HuronBob at 10:34 AM on June 11, 2007


Flowers are perfect! Chances are that most of the kids will be getting them too. It is usually the thing to do for dance recitals, plays, and choral recitals if you are going to see a loved one (friend or family).
posted by MayNicholas at 10:36 AM on June 11, 2007


flowers. and also, celebrating with ice cream afterwards is a must!
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 10:38 AM on June 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Flowers for sure!

I don't think you need anything other than that. But I would usually give my daughter a gift card for her favorite restaurant, and we would all go there afterwards for dinner, and she would "pay" for all of us with the gift card. If dinner is too much, or would take too much time, then Dairy Queen, or some other dessert place is a good substitute.
posted by The Deej at 10:39 AM on June 11, 2007


My daughter loves to get flowers after a recital. Her dance school sells single roses at the show to raise money for the studio so we usually pick out a few and have them tied together with ribbon. Her grandparents and other family members do the same. She sometimes gets dance-related stuff (photo frames, stuffed animals in tutus, that sort of thing) but it's always the flowers that make her face light up the most.
posted by atropos at 10:46 AM on June 11, 2007


Yes, yes, nth the ice cream afterward. As a little kid I found the excitement of performance was often followed by a letdown - this is still true, actually. Post-show ice cream really helps mitigate it.
posted by clavicle at 10:47 AM on June 11, 2007


My mom used to get me (inexpensive) little pieces of jewelry as special treats when I had a recital, at the end of the school year, or what have you, which I really treasured. I'm sure your niece would love flowers too, but something that will last longer might be a bit more meaningful.
posted by kitty teeth at 10:48 AM on June 11, 2007


yes, flowers! I still remember the small bouquet my godparents gave me (color-coordinated with my dress so I could carry it in the play) when I played Marie Antoinette in a fourth-grade history play. And that was a loong time ago.
posted by anitar at 10:53 AM on June 11, 2007


My daughter loved getting a stuffed animal dressed as a ballerina - she now has a full troupe of them.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 10:54 AM on June 11, 2007


flowers, and take a good picture of the girl with her parents. put it in a pretty frame for her to hang up in her room.
posted by thinkingwoman at 11:00 AM on June 11, 2007


It's near-unanimous - flowers. I was in recitals as a kid and nobody ever got me flowers and I was always so jealous of the other girls. I felt like asking for flowers would be crass so I didn't and I just never got them.

And I guess we always went out for ice cream or milkshakes after performances. Usually 31 flavors.
posted by crinklebat at 11:06 AM on June 11, 2007


Flowers flowers flowers. Just like a real ballerina. And ice cream after.

/former little-girl ballerina
posted by desuetude at 11:25 AM on June 11, 2007


Oh yeah, flowers. She'll feel like a million bucks.
posted by radioamy at 11:28 AM on June 11, 2007


It's hilariously redundant at this point, but yes, flowers will make her year.

Also, if she's anything like my little ballerina self was, she'll want to continue the dancing outside of classes; one of my most treasured items was my own recording of the Nutcracker Suite, and I could spend an entire afternoon waltzing around with my dolls to that. Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty Suite is also a winner.
posted by sarahsynonymous at 11:56 AM on June 11, 2007


one of my most treasured items was my own recording of the Nutcracker Suite, and I could spend an entire afternoon waltzing around with my dolls to that. Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty Suite is also a winner

Oooh, and Chopin's Etudes for practice barre routines.
posted by desuetude at 12:23 PM on June 11, 2007


At my dance recitals, the flowers were a very important part of the whole event. All the girls got a few bouquets--from parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. It was an important part of the fun.
posted by Mavri at 12:29 PM on June 11, 2007


But I would usually give my daughter a gift card for her favorite restaurant, and we would all go there afterwards for dinner, and she would "pay" for all of us with the gift card.

This is SUCH a cute idea. I don't know about using it for the ocassion of a dance recital (you should be treating her, it seems), but please everyone do this for Mother's day and Father's day, so that even the little kids can "take their parents out."
posted by nax at 1:06 PM on June 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Billionthing the flowers. Whenever I had a dance recital, musical performance, etc. (anything involving me being on stage) my mother would greet me afterwards with a dozen red roses. I always felt so grown-up (until I was 14 and this was *horribly embarrassing*) but at 7 this was incredibly special.

And yes, ice cream afterwards is a must.
posted by fuzzbean at 1:38 PM on June 11, 2007


On post-preview--actually, it was usually a single rose except for graduation, when it was a dozen.
posted by fuzzbean at 1:38 PM on June 11, 2007


Thank god everyone said flowers, because honestly... there's no other answer. (Though ice cream after would be an awesome extra.)
posted by pyjammy at 1:43 PM on June 11, 2007


Flowers. The kind of bouquet one can hold in the crook of their arm as they take extra curtsies, rather than the kind that come in a vase or basket, but if there's no other alternative, vase/basket would be better than no flowers.

Flowers! Flowers! Flowers!
posted by susanbeeswax at 10:36 PM on June 11, 2007


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