Thank You For Flying!

Thank You!

THANK YOU to all the schools, organizations, and events that have me fly across the country to do what I do. Thank you for supporting my mission to encourage, inspire, and make a difference in people’s lives, young and old. I am truly grateful to experience the joys (and even the turbulence) of travel.

Thank you for flying with me! You fuel my attitude of gratitude daily. (And of course, I’m on a bird as I write this. That’s the view from my window)

How can I help YOU soar to new heights? I have dates available this summer (only a few left). Let me know where I’m flying to next!

– Shawn Byfield

How Many Hours Should Your Kid Train? Here’s My Response…

Here’s a question parents (and some teachers) always ask: “Shawn, how many hours a week should my kid be putting in at her studio?”

With over 27 years of experience teaching students, my response is two fold:

1️⃣ If they’re seriously interested, then invest in as many as you can reasonably afford!

BUT the next point is much more important…

2️⃣ The amount of hours (how many) pales in comparison to the QUALITY of the time spent in each hour. HOW you spend the time in each hour matters 3x more than the quantity of hours.

This doesn’t just apply to dance. Not being present, goofing off, and not putting in 100% in every class will not get you ahead, no matter how many practice hours you invest.

EQUATION: Crappy work ethic per hour X 3 hours just equals 3 more hours of crappy work ethic. 💩 You’re still in the same place- frustrated and left behind…

…while others who are committed, focused, and train with purpose every minute of every hour DRAMATICALLY come out ahead of their peers. One hour of motivated focus ALWAYS beats 3 hours of mediocre attention. It’s a law, and it works every time.

QUESTION: Why do some classes accomplish so much more per hour, while other classes constantly never seem to get ahead? The answer: they understand QUALITY of time over quantity.

Hands down, QUALITY always beats quantity. 💯

How are your kids, or your students spending each hour?

– Shawn Byfield 👊🏾


Why Doing Your Best Starts *BEFORE* You Step On Stage… Shocking!

Forget what you’ve heard… Your best performance does NOT magically happen once you step onto the stage. Surprised?! Shocked?! You shouldn’t be.

Here’s what you gotta do:

Practice at the best of your ability BEFORE you step on to the stage. That means rehearsing full out! Treat class like an audition!

The more you push yourself BEFORE you perform, the more you build your stamina. The more your stamina builds, the more you build muscle memory. And once muscle memory becomes automatic, you’ll see a dramatic boost in your confidence, and performance level.

You won’t do your best, until you know what your best is. Find out what your best is during rehearsal time. Discover your limits, and work hard to improve daily.

So what does this mean? Simple:

➡️ No more laziness in rehearsals. Invest quality time every minute of every session.

➡️ Step your game up in classes. You’ll quicky discover how fast you grow.

➡️ Be a leader, not a follower. Set the example for others.

➡️ Don’t wait for motivation to take yourself seriously. You don’t need permission to be great.

When you finally get on stage, you’ll be ready. You’ll have the muscle. And who knows? Maybe you’ll even have a fun time!

– Shawn Byfield 👊🏾

DANCERS: Here’s How To Crush It In Your Lyrical Category This Season

** LYRICAL Category 101 **

#DanceCompetition is in full swing. Want to impress your adjudicators, feel incredible on stage, and wow your audience? Follow these simple steps below.

Understand your lyrics

Unfortunately, there is no Step Two, or any other steps, if you haven’t invested serious quality time in Step One!

You wouldn’t perform a tap dance solo without wearing tap dance shoes, would you?

Then why perform a lyrical dance, in a lyrical category, without understanding the LYRICS?

🤔 💬


When I’m judging a lyrical category, and deciding between a dancer who shows emotional connection to the song lyrics, versus a dancer showing off gymnastics and pump turns… Emotional connection wins every time.


– Shawn Byfield




Stop Scrolling! And Read This…


Listen real quick: It all comes down to CHOICES. What you CHOOSE to do (or not do) matters.

Want a future that looks different than it does now? Here’s a tip:

➡️ CHOOSE to not make the next five years anything like the last five.

I choose to make the next half decade dramatically different from the past 5 years! That’s the vibe I’m on. I’m so grateful for the past and present, and excited about the future. 😁

Who’s with me?

– Shawn Byfield (Contact me here)

Why Learning To LOSE Actually Helps You Win

Why Learning To LOSE Actually Helps You Win

One of the greatest lessons you can give your child or student is this: Letting them LOSE.

Here’s why…

In life, everyone does NOT get a trophy. In life, you WILL fail, you WILL screw up, and gasp! You will LOSE. Why?

Don’t ask me why, it’s just that kind of universe! I wasn’t around when the original decisions were being made. But that’s how life *actually* works. Deal with it.

In our entitlement filled, everybody gets a medal culture, we set our kids up for failure in life. All the parental over-protecting eventually creates an under-accomplishing generation…

…What do you mean you don’t know how to do laundry? What do you mean you don’t know how to rewrite a test, or redo a course? What do you mean you don’t know how to make eggs?

It starts with giving them the GIFT of standing on any competitive stage, and NOT receiving a placement. SOMEBODY has to lose! And this time, it’s YOUR kid. Plain and simple. Teach them how to deal with it.

Sharing Is Caring, So Give ‘Em This

Give them the life lesson of being in a losing team. (Heaven forbid they have to return to the school and work harder.) Give them the experience of being the only one in a category who did NOT place, so they know how to develop self-confidence, work ethic and the pick-myself-upness to advance in the future.

I really could go on and on and on with this one, but I trust you understand the value in letting your kids go through this valuable lesson on their own.

ON THEIR OWN (See Above)

Teach your kids how to LOSE. Gracefully and with maturity.

In the Olympics, every human on Earth knows only three countries win. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. That’s it. THREE. Could you imagine watching an Olympics where every country won a medal? Where’s the competition in that? You laugh at the idea…

…Yet you expect that hilarious, unrealistic scenario for your own kids?

“But I don’t want their feelings to be hurt, blah blah blah…”

STOP IT. The reason kids have low self-esteem is because we keep buffering experiences for them to develop their self-esteem. Remember that time YOU screwed up? Made a mistake? Broke something? But *you learned something* from the experience? Exactly.

So why would you deprive young ones from the moments that teach how life ACTUALLY works?

Wisdom Stuff

As a certified coach and trainer, it’s my responsibility to share insight and wisdom to help prepare young ones (and us older ones) with the tools needed to steer in a positive direction. But the most valuable way to set up our next generation for success tomorrow, is by letting them experience how to overcome LOSING today.

And if you’re a young one reading this, my advice to you:

Experience LOSING as much as you can, as fast as you can. After a while, you’ll be glad you did. It gets easier. Because the more you lose, the more you’ll learn!

– Shawn Byfield


PERFORMERS: What’s All This “Merde” Sh*t About, Anyway?

Here’s a crappy story.

Why do we say “Merde” before performing?

The simple theory is this:

Merde is the French translation for the word “poop.” By the late 1800s, many major cities were literally covered in merde because of all the horses. Before motorized vehicles, horses did the heavy lifting to transport goods, materials, and people.

Poop was so bad, there was even “The Great Horse Manure Crisis of 1894!”

(No shit, look it up)

On average, a horse will produce between 15 to 35 lbs of manure daily. Because of this, people walked through poop daily.

Definitely a shitty situation…

Smells Interesting

When going for a night out, people trailed this poop into theatres.

However, performers with their uncanny natural spin on life, sat on this and squeezed out a positive… The more merde in the lobby and in the aisles meant the more people watching your show.

And the more people watching your show means: more energy, bigger applause, and more money for the theatre! Now that’s definitely nothing to turn your nose up at.

Call me a turd, but that’s why we say Merde before we perform. Now you know.

And! The French would say it three times “Merde Merde Merde” before stepping on stage, because the more shit that comes your way (literally), the better.

All right. I’m done talking about all this crap, and hope you feel relieved.

Watch your step, have fun, and a huge MERDE to every one of you performing today! 💩

– Shawn Byfield

As a sought-after presenter, choreographer, coach and entrepreneur, Shawn Byfield’s unique perspective is enjoyed by thousands who train and mentor with him every year. To start learning, yearning, movin’ or groovin’… contact Shawn before today ends.

Attention: The Newsies Strike Starts Now!

Brampton Music Theatre presents Disney’s Newsies

Get Newsies Tickets Here

The time has finally come to carry the banner.

For the past few weeks, I’ve been helping bring this wonderful musical to life. I gotta say, it’s so fulfilling, energizing, and rewarding to watch the next generation of stage performers hone their skills, and rise to the challenge.

They’re learning what it takes to be a stage performer in Canada and I must say… This cast is SO damn talented.

They’re hard workers.

They’re enthusiastic!

They’ve learned that singing and dancing at the same time isn’t as easy as it looks!

But most importantly… They’ve become FRIENDS.

I want you to see and hear what they’re working on. Because I’m super proud.

And… they’re making the dance moves look SO fun.

For one weekend only, our production of NEWSIES hits the stage! Will you support the NEWSIES in their fight?

Watch the Newsies sing, dance, and STRIKE at The Rose Theatre, Brampton Ontario.

Thursday March 28 – Sunday March 31, 2019

Push Here For NEWSIES Tickets Before They’re Gone

– Shawn Byfield

As a sought-after presenter, choreographer, coach and entrepreneur, Shawn Byfield’s unique perspective is enjoyed by thousands who train and mentor with him every year. To start learning, yearning, movin’ or groovin’… contact Shawn before today ends.

DANCE LOVERS: What To Do In Toronto On Family Day?

Hey Toronto dance lovers! It may be cold out there, but it’s always hot in the studio.

If you’re a fan of tap dance or hip hop, get yourself on the dance floor and into one of these workshops.

Warm your body, and an even warmer soul with some hot moves and fresh new inspiration!

Visit the pages below for more info:

Tap Dance Workshop

Get some rhythm in your life in this awesome Family Day tap dance class.

Hip Hop Dance Workshop

Burn the floor and get your groove on in this energizing hip hop class.

In the spirit of Family Day, don’t forget to bring your favourite buddy, the family you choose.

Let’s dance!

– Shawn Byfield

Trophies Are Nice, But This Is Better

DANCE COMPETITION SEASON is around the corner! Here’s a rehearsal snippet from a flamenco inspired #tapdance from last year’s season.

Press Here To Watch

Sure winning trophies are nice, but creating a memorable, challenging piece is always much more rewarding. This solo was best of all worlds, winning numerous categories and big scholarships, while providing a fulfilling challenge to my wonderfully smart student Lara.

I choreographed to a beautiful arrangement of a Gypsy song, “Seresta**” The entire piece was extremely musical, and filled with passion using complex, flamenco syncopation, a range of dynamics, and lots of space in the intro. Plus, listen to the time signature, one of my faves to work in! 🎶🎶

– Shawn B

**SERESTA performed by Dizzy Gillespie United & Nations Orchestra