Shyanne Taylor — MC
Kelsey Chase — Rock Star
Jesse Barber — Rock Star
Charlene Chow — Rock Star
Steven Kostusyk — Photographer
Shyanne Taylor has been Blues dancing for three years (but shaking her thang for much, much longer.) While also an avid Lindy Hopper, Blues quickly became her favorite when she discovered it.
The music, and the expression she finds within it, is a freeing and exuberant thing to watch and to feel.
But just as much as the music, the community of Blues dancers she has found has made the scene a home away from home for her, and that love and connection and care is exactly what makes her such a good MC; from her enthusiasm to her (bad?) great jokes, she will entertain while also telling you what up.
What up, Steel City?
Kelsey is a Boston-based blues dancer who has been dancing in one form or another since she was 7 years old. She got her blues dancing start at UConn, where she was a competitive ballroom dancer for 3 years before being lured away by the freedom of the social floor. One of those creative types, she spends her non-dancing time making music, writing, and mixing up new cocktails. The quickest way to get her attention is to mention Harry Potter.
Jesse first fell in love with the blues right here at Steel City just 2 years ago. Since then, his passion for the dance has pushed him to travel the country at every opportunity, learning and practicing wherever he can. Back at his current home in Buffalo, he shares that excitement and knowledge with the small (but growing!) blues scene that he founded in order to get his dance fix locally. Jesse enjoys the comfort, style, and liberty inherent to the blues, but holds a special place in his heart for a good comfy close embrace. If you want to find Jesse on the dance floor, it’s easy: just look up!
Poem by Zach Brass
What his role is? I do not recall
It must be some sort of catch all
Since he’s Jesse Barber
His role must be larger
Why else would we nickname him Tall
Charlene hails from Boston, MA where she teaches at their weekly blues dances and inspires Boston locals to get excited about blues music and dancing. She has volunteered at countless events for most of the last decade and knows what not to do and what to try instead. Charlene has been a loyal attendee of Steel City Blues for many years, and loves making sure dancers, volunteers, staff, and musicians all have a good experience! Catch her on the dance floor, where she’s guaranteed to add some shimmies, silliness, and smiles to your dance.
“Born within the burning rivers of Ohio, raised amongst the moose of Maine, Steven roams the land as a traveling photographer and dancer and shenanigan instigator and nurse and and…….. enough listing, Steven does a lot of things. He is a man with many talents, two hips, and one
Steven according to his official biographer and standard-bearer, Dan Miles.
Emily is a wonderful organizer. She’s put everything together super well and she’s been dancing blues for a long time. And making everyone smile! And making community with musicians. She also runs Hot Metal Blues! And cares! About you!
Emily is a kick-ass organizer, who kicks the other organizers’ asses to make sure they keep organizing. She also corrects all of the spelling and grammar mistakes, which are mostly made by Amelia. We cannot stress enough how much she cares about you, or how much stress caring about you creates. Her day-job might be as a nanny, but that doesn’t make her yours. Except Steel City and Hot Metal Blues, the two darlings she supervises to make sure they don’t run into too much trouble.
David has been dancing for like, a long while, which becomes obvious when floating in their close embrace. David may be quiet, but they speak volumes with their dancing. On the Steel City Committee since 2016, if you’ve been housed you’ve got them to thank. You’ll spot their fluffy hair working in the background to make sure everything is ok, including fixing the website after Emily breaks it–which she does with great frequency and totally unintentionally.
Amelia approaches dance the way that they approach everything in life, at full throttle. They put their entire soul onto the dance floor and their joy is electric. Have you seen all the photos? Amelia was a rockstar volunteer (before rockstars were a thing) and was the person called when an organizer couldn’t be there. It was only natural that they were drafted to the committee before they had officially moved to Pittsburgh. They put the good into chaotic good. All they want is for Emily to be proud of them.