Father-daughter wedding dance leads to big opportunities

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When Ashley Richmond told her dad she was getting married, he was already thinking about his first dance with the bride.

"He said right away we're not going to do a slow dance," Ashley tells Shine. Father-of-the-bride David Sparks was prepared to put on a show for his daughter's wedding guests, but neither he nor Ashley were prepared for the 7 million viewers who'd turn their wedding reception video into a viral sensation.

It's been dubbed the best father-daughter dance ever: a medley spanning musical genres choregraphed by Ashley and her dad and performed on her big day. A month after their August 8 wedding, she posted the video on YouTube and things haven't been the same since.

There have been interviews with major news outlets, a live performance on Good Morning America, a front page article on their hometown paper, The Houston Chronicle. And more Facebook friend requests than Ashley can keep up with.

"My dad and I, we actually had people stop us at the airport because they recognize us from the video," says Ashley, an accountant for an oil company. "But it's funny because I just started a new job and nobody seems to know at work."

That might change soon. Ashley, 28, and David, 51, have even more talk show appearances lined up in the near future. Perhaps a new dance? "We haven't thought about it, but we are trying to think of ways to stay relevant." (Hear that, "Dancing with the Stars" producers?)

None of this was on her mind when they began practicing for their big number in June. Originally, she asked her husband, Nicholas, whom she met through mutual friends five years ago, to choregraph a dance number with her for the wedding. It wasn't his thing, so Ashley recruited her dad who was only too eager to get on the floor with her on the condition that Michael Jackson joined the party.

"He loves Michael Jackson so he wanted to do a dance to him." And dance they did: to the Jackson 5's "One More Chance", sandwiched in between "My Girl" and Beyonce's "Put a Ring On It" and a slew of other hits.

Twice a week, for two months before the event, father and daughter, who live a block away from each other, practiced their moves. The groom to be and the mother of the bride, Angel, meanwhile, served as judges, offering support and the occasional critique.

"After watching us practice, Nicholas decided he wanted to do a dance with his mom to a Beyonce song," says Ashley, "so they started practicing too."

But it wasn't meant to be. The deejay couldn't find Nick's requested Beyonce track on the day of the wedding and his dance with his mom got cut.

The fact that Ashley and her dad's number became a worldwide sensation? Well that didn't help things. "I think in the beginning there was some bitterness, but now he's really happy and excited for us."

You know what they say about marriage: if you can weather your first viral video together, you can do anything.

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