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Summerlin-area dancer, 13, no stranger to big stage

Jayna Hughes of the Summerlin area was 2 when she started dancing, she says. It started with ballet, and by the time she was 11, she was hip-hop dancing on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” with her dance group Prodigy Dance Crew.

“It was so surreal,” Jayna said. “It was just crazy to be dancing in the same place my mom and I would watch together on TV. I enjoyed it, though. I like performing in front of others. I just close out everything else before I go on stage. I have that confidence in myself to perform and not get scared or nervous — just perform.”

Jayna, a 13-year-old eighth-grader at Faith Lutheran Middle School and High School, performed for Gwen Stefani last year and Janet Jackson in January, said her mother, Jerevi.

Jayna also appeared on both “America’s Got Talent” and “Showtime at the Apollo” in 2017, she said.

On May 4, she’s set to perform in Henderson for the St. Jude Heart of Fashion event, a big-ticket fundraiser for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

“I think it’s important to give back through my passion because it gives dance a purpose — to help others and bring happiness and love to others,” she said.

Jerevi said she travels with Jayna to all of her performances, training sessions and dance competitions.

“She’s one of those kids you don’t really have to push,” Jerevi said. “And I’m one of those parents that believes that whatever my kid’s passion is, I’ll help and I’ll contribute as much as I can. I support her in whatever she wants to do.”

Traveling frequently from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, Jayna said she’s always on the go, balancing school and dance, all while maintaining a 4.2 GPA.

“I go to school in the morning, then I come home and do homework and then do dance,” Jayna said. “Typically I have dance during the weekend, so I don’t get much social life with friends. That’s the scariest part of it all: my social life. It’s kind of hard for me but without a doubt, I know this is what I want to do and I’m going to do it.”

Contact Mia Sims at msims@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0298. Follow @miasims___ on Twitter.

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