Local Dance Recital Will Pay Homage to Steeler James Conner

Miss Katie and her dancers at a recent parade.

Miss Katie and her dancer’s at a recent parade.

Peyton Scheuer , Reporter

Have you ever been to one of Miss Katie’s recitals? Or even heard of it? Well if you haven’t, then you should come this year because it’s gonna be better than ever. In past years, mostly parents and friends attend, but this year Miss Katie wants more students to attend. There are 300 dancers that go to Miss Katie’s and a majority are from GM. Most of the dancers at Miss Katie’s have been dancing there for years, and all have personal connections with her.

Miss Katie, AKA Katie Staynoff Jones, recently fought cancer and won.  Diagnosed with breast cancer in April of 2016, Jones went through 8 rounds of chemo, surgery, and 33 radiation treatments.

While going through all this, she went to a training camp for the NFL Steelers football team. While there, she met James Conner, a McDowell grad who is currently a running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers.  Conner also won a very public fight with cancer. In 2015 Conner learned he had stage two hodgkin’s lymphoma after he suffered a MCL tear while playing college football for Pitt.

Jones was already a fan but after knowing his story and relating so much, she wanted to follow in his footsteps. She was so inspired watching him fight through cancer to get back to doing what he loves most, that she did the same. She fought through cancer to get back in the studio and doing what she loves most, dancing.

This year Miss Katie’s dancers are dedicating a ballet dance to Conner. The dance is called “black and yellow.” The dancers participating will be wearing jerseys with his name and number on it in support of his bravery.

The dancers are super excited to celebrate Conner and Jones’ heroic battle of cancer at this year’s recital. “This year for ballet we tried to take on a new challenge by doing a fast song and with words for [Wiz Khalifa’s] ‘Black and Yellow.’ We really have stepped up or game on a different level this year,” stated sophomore Savannah Yonkin who is a student at GM and in the “Black and Yellow” dance.

“We’ve been working hard this year to make our recital the best one yet. The recital is “movie themed” and there are amazing numbers from both classic and newer movies. It will be a great show!” says GM dancer Kaley Berger.

If you’re a Steelers fan and want to see the show,  tickets will be available through any of Miss.Katie’s dancers. The recital is May 17 at 8:30 p.m. and May 18 at 4 p.m. Tickets usually sell for $7, but all student tickets are $3. Come cheer all Miss.Katie’s dancers this May.