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Traci Young-Byron from "Step It Up" stars in the Lifetime reality docu-series.

Traci Young-Byron was born and raised in the heart of Liberty City in Miami, Florida. She began dancing at the tender age of three with the Inner City Children's Touring Dance Company under the direction of Florene Lithcutt Nichols. Young-Byron began receiving her technical training as a student at South Miami Middle School. After two years of intense training, she decided to further her growth at Miami Northwestern Senior High School's Performing and Visual Arts Center under the direction of Roderick Davis. While a student at Northwestern, Young-Byron participated in a plethora of activities, including Freshmen Federation, Sophomore Federation, Junior Federation, Senior Federation, Student Government Association, PAVAC Dance program, JV and Varsity cheerleading, National Honor Society and the Royal Court. As a sophomore, she received the award for Best All Around Dancer, an honor that was traditionally given to a senior. In 1997, she graduated from Miami Northwestern Senior High School with honors and in the top 10% of her class.

In the fall of 1997, Young-Byron began attending Florida State University (FSU). As a Dance major, she was trained in the areas of Classical Ballet, Modern, Jazz, Hip Hop, Caribbean and choreography. She co-chartered Mahogany Dance Theatre at Florida A&M University and co-founded Phlava Dance Troop at FSU. In 1998, she was selected to study at the Alvin Ailey Summer Intensive in New York City. In the spring of 2000, she was inducted into the prestigious Kappa Epsilon Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, in which she spearheaded a number of step shows as Step Master. While in Tallahassee, Florida, she partook in a host of community service projects and volunteered countless hours at local schools, community centers and dance camps. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance from FSU in 2001.

Young-Byron began her employment with Miami Dade County Public Schools in 2001 at Madison Middle School. During that time, she was named Rookie Teacher of the Year at Madison Middle, Rookie Teacher of the Year for Region III and runner-up Rookie Teacher of the Year for the entire Miami Dade County Public Schools. After three years there, she began teaching at Miami Northwestern Senior High School in 2006. In 2008, she became the artistic director of the reputable PAVAC Dance program and the elite Golden Girls dance team. She was also named Teacher of the Year at Miami Northwestern Senior High School in 2010. She serves as a positive influence for the Northwestern student body, particularly with the young ladies. She provides counseling sessions, growth and development and creative communication opportunities for her students and youth in surrounding communities. She has personally provided over $25,000 in awards, scholarships, conventions and master classes to a plethora of deserving students throughout her teaching career.

Young-Byron's creativity, contributions and teachings are linked with the African Heritage Cultural Arts Center, Mustangs In Motion Dance Company, Phlava Dance Troop, Mahogany Dance Theatre and The Addiction Dance Company/Experience. In 2002, she became a member of the "four-time most popular dance team in the NBA," the Miami Heat Dancers. She danced with them for nine years, holding the positions of team captain and assistant choreographer. A member and co-choreographer of Fly Khicks, she was selected to represent Miami on MTV's season three of "America's Best Dance Crew" in 2008. She has been featured in a plethora of music videos, awards shows and concerts, and has been blessed to perform in various countries around the world. She is a veteran Jazz dance instructor with the infamous Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's AileyCamp Miami staff. Currently, she is the founder and artistic director of the Young Contemporary Dance Theatre, a diverse and community based dance company that caters to over 150 inner city children and adults. In addition, she began her newest venture in 2013…the YCDT SupaStarz, the competition team.

Through YCDT and PAVAC, Young-Byron provides performance opportunities, academic development and support, health seminars, master classes, out-of-state conferences/trips, professional photo sessions, makeup tutorials and life coaching. YCDT has participated in a number of local and national events. Their performances include the International Conference for Blacks in Dance in Los Angeles, California, and master classes with the staff of the reputable Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, including the artistic director himself, Robert Battle. In addition, the company was personally invited and performed for NBA superstar Dwayne Wade. YCDT participates in a host of community events and performances.


Birthplace: Miami, FL

"Step It Up" (TV show) scene Lifetime Decides to 'Step It Up' — Premiering Friday, September 25, the new reality docu-series follows former Miami Heat dancer Traci Young-Byron, who is the owner of the elite dance company, the Young Contemporary Dance Theatre (YCDT). Read more...

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