Tag Archives: dance

Experience Awesome Tap Dance Lessons in Toronto At BDX

20 May

Awesome Tap Dance Lessons in Toronto at BDX, Byfield Dance Experience. Always crazy awesome energy. Get yo’ tap dance shoes out of your closet Toronto!

See you in class.

http://www.Twitter.com/BDXstudio
http://www.ShawnByfield.com/tapdance.htm

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It’s Time For Inspiration! Dance eXperience Magazine Launches

5 Oct

Shawn Byfield's Dance eXperience MagazineIntroducing: The 1st edition of Dance eXperience Magazine! Get it here:

http://ShawnByfield.com/dxm.htm

You’ll see interesting and vibrant interviews and articles from my students and staff. Right now, John and I plan to make this a monthly publication that embraces the real-life stories of people who walk through the doors at BDX.

It’s just a start, but hey- you gotta start somewhere. So just start. Whatever you’re thinking of doing, just take one step toward it. Don’t ever be afraid to jump off the cliff…

…because you can always build your wings on the way down. =)

Happy Tuesday, and stay positive.

– Shawn B

PS: What’s your thoughts on John’s story? Do you relate to Jamie’s transformation? Let us know…

http://ShawnByfield.com/dxm.htm

Toronto Tap Dance Intensive – Everett Smith Interview

15 Sep

2010 Toronto Tap Dance Intensive – Everett Smith Interview

Shawn Byfield, owner of Toronto’s BDX studio chats with good friend Everett Smith. If you didn’t know, Everett is a Canadian success story: Tap Dogs, Canada’s Olympic tap dance team, director of Tap Dance Centre in Mississauga and top 4 finalist on season 2 of So You Think You Can Dance Canada.

Watch the video to learn about Everett’s humble beginnings and his view on Canadian dance.

Leave a COMMENT below!

Behind The Scenes: Toronto Tap Dance Intensive PART 2

3 Sep

Behind The Scenes: Toronto Tap Dance Intensive PART 2

Toronto tap dance group improv

Toronto tap dance group improv

A wonderful week of tap dance inspiration happened in Toronto August 23 – August 27 at Byfield Dance Experience (BDX). It was a wonderful opportunity for tap dancers from the GTA and as far east as New Brunswick- to come together, learn, grow and make friends.

See Toronto Tap Dance Intensive PART 1 here…

Tap intensive Part 2: Starting on the 2nd day, IMPROV was the name of the game. Improvisation is a major component of jazz music and tap dance. It’s helped the art form grow and evolve. Yet so many dancers are terrified when someone asks them to “make it up on the spot.”

During the Tap Dance Intensive all participants learned tips, tricks and techniques to:

  1. Finally eliminate their fear and negative outlook of improvising;
  2. Understand and practice using many different improv strategies;
  3. Strengthen improvisation individually, as well as trading in teams and groups.

There’s a reason we put the “E” in IMPROVE. Because IMPROV is a constant work in progress.

At week’s end, we showed off to a small audience, everyone proudly showing their new respect and understanding of improvisation. Kudos to the participants, and to all tap dancers who continue to work on improv and embrace being creative!

– Shawn Byfield

Click Here To Learn About More Toronto Tap Dance Classes

Working on tap dance improv

Working on tap dance improv

Click Here To Learn About More Toronto Tap Dance Classes

Tap On – GO Transit Presto Tap Dance Commercial

1 Jun

Now this… this is SO frickin’ cool:

“Tap On” – Tap Dance Presto Pass Commercial

It’s the cool tap dance commercial I choreographed for GO Transit’s new Presto Pass. We filmed last month and our tap dancing antics took over Toronto’s Union Station during rush hour.

I’m tap dancing with Janaye Upshaw, who killed it! You may recognize her from the “Dance, Dance, Much Video Dance!” campaign. Also recently worked together in the movie Turn The Beat Around. Killer tap feet on this girl.

We rehearsed the tap dance at the production company’s office, also at my Toronto dance studio BDX. On the day, we filmed our tap dance routine around 8 or 9 times to get enough footage to create this masterpiece.

We were so wiped out. But I think it was worth it!

Shawn Byfield tap dance Toronto

Shawn Byfield doing the splits

And after all that tap dancing, sweating, and spontaneously performing for Go Transit commuters… I hope you get a Presto Pass already!

Comment. Love to know what you think?

– Shawn B


Learn To Improve Tapdance Improvisation

3 Dec
Tap dance improv tips

Tap dance improv tips

My friends,

Many people want to learn to tap dance. And many want to learn to improv in tap dance. The first situation is easy: find a tap dance class with a reputable teacher. But how do you do the latter- improvisation?

My suggestion: work at it. No seriously. There’s lots of ways to approach this. Here’s four suggestions:

  • Start with a step you like, and play around with it. Dabble. Add a shuffle.
  • Find a rhythm or groove in your head, and try to recreate that groove with your tap feet.
  • Do your favourite tap step on one foot, then reverse the whole thing.
  • Tap with a buddy, and challenge each other to repeat each others steps in real time. I call this “Monkey See, Monkey Tap”.

There’s lots of ways to get started. Check this tap video out- I use the groove in my head method and embellish on top of that:

The video above, is of me working on my own tap dance improv skills. I wore my Nikes so my neighbours wouldn’t complain… =)

Like everything else in life, you have to go through a learning curve. You won’t just wake up one day and be able to tap dance like a pro. Improv especially doesn’t come naturally.

Tap dance classes help build your VOCABULARY of tap dance. Each tap step is a word. Those words make sentences. Once you understand what the words mean, then you can work on phrasing those tap dance steps together. Ya dig?

This is just a short tap post. I wanted you to know, tap dance improv requires a bit of time. I’ve been hoofin (tap dancing) for years, and I STILL need to work at it. That’s why we put the “E” in “IMPROV…E”. Nobody’s perfect. We ALL need to keep seeking out new tap steps to trade, new music to groove to, and new ideas or inspiration.

Lemme know how it goes. Happy tappin!

About The Author:

Shawn Byfield (www.ShawnByfield.com) is an award winning choreographer, show director and a leading expert in dance lessons and industry advice. His extremely fun approach to learning is a must for anyone looking to achieve their highest potential through dance.

Tap Dance Meets Sudan

23 Sep

Here’s a snippet of a friggin’ cool tap dance performance I did at Rose Theatre (Brampton, Ontario) with my very talented and inspiring friend Waleed Abdulhamid:

Tap Dance Performance part 1

Waleed “Kush” plays just about any instrument, and I play… well, I tried to keep up playing my taps! It’s part of a promo for the theatre. And here’s part two of the tap dance performance, this time with flute:

Tap Dance Performance part 2

Yeah, I still got it. Let’s see those contestants on So You Think You Can Dance Canada keep up with ME! 😉 Now you know what I do, besides choreograph, produce shows and teach tap class. Leave your comments and share the love.

– Shawn B

www.ShawnByfield.com

Toronto Tap Dance Class For Cool Adults

13 Jun

Hey funky friends!

Many of my Toronto tap dance students are adults who used to tap, but haven’t done it in years. That’s who I focus on, the cool people who used to tap dance and want to rekindle that passion. =)

It’s NEVER too late to grab your tap shoes. Don’t let ANYONE tell you any different.

So, if you or someone you know is looking for a tap school, and it’s been a while, don’t miss out on some fun times. Get back in some tap lessons! And hey, if you seriously want to get those feet back, you’re welcome to drop by and try out a class so we can see what level is best for you.

Drop us a line here and let’s crack a tap together!

– Shawn B

www.ShawnByfield.com

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