What this Disney song means to Utah’s viral daddy-daughter duo
It’s been almost a year since Mat and Savanna Shaw went viral for their cover of “The Prayer” — a performance they didn’t think would reach beyond their close friends and family
Today, the daddy-daughter duo from Kaysville, Utah, is still singing and releasing music videos for a worldwide fanbase that continues to grow. In a recent Facebook post, Mat Shaw shared how the duo’s latest performance — a rendition of Disney/Pixar’s “Coco” — reflects their unexpected rise to fame.
“In some ways, the story of Disney’s ‘Coco’ mirrors mine and Savanna’s,” he wrote. “I had to put my passion for music on hold while I started a family and worked to support them. I was happy to do it, and found purpose and honor in it as my wife and I worked hard to ensure a better future for the generations that were to come after us. This made me reflect on the many who came before us that worked so hard (often putting their passions and dreams on hold) to put us in a better position in life.”
In an interview with the Deseret News last year, Mat Shaw said he once had dreams of recording music and being on Broadway, but that all changed when, as a teenager, his family suffered some financial hardships following his father’s death. Although he sang in choirs and participated in musical theater, he ended up majoring in accounting and developing a real estate business.
“I really didn’t do much with (music) for a big chunk of time,” he told the Deseret News. “My priority was to make sure that my family was secure and taken care of, and I knew music wasn’t going to do that for my family.”
Fast-forward several years later, when his daughter, Savanna, joined a youth choir at the Hale Centre Theatre. Through this group, Savanna made new friends and began to feel more comfortable standing in the spotlight, the Deseret News reported.
“Savanna’s dreams and passion for music thankfully brought me back to the dreams of my youth, and returned me to something I love — performing music,” Mat Shaw wrote in his post. “I will forever be grateful to her for gifting me this opportunity to follow my dreams again.
“We can all agree that following our dreams and passions is sage advice, but remembering those who paved the way for us and sacrificed so much along the way should never be overlooked,” he continued. “So, with gratitude, we dedicate our music to the many family and friends who have helped inspire us to be who we truly are today.”