At first glance, Pittsburgh native Erik Cavanaugh does not exactly look the part of a dancer. Truthfully, he doesn’t look the part of a dancer at second, third, or fourth glance either. But do not be fooled – a dancer he is. And a truly talented one at that.

Cavanaugh’s posts show him gliding across our phone screens with the dance moves (and grace and poise) of Baryshnikov meets Beyoncé – however, his heels (six inch black patent leather heels) are probably more in the Beyoncé category – with a body far more similar to Jack Lambert (Side Note: the names Baryshnikov and Beyoncé immediately came to mind, while I had to Google “famous Pittsburgh linebackers” to come up with Jack Lambert, NFL Legend). More to the point, Cavanaugh is a big dude with big talent and dreams to match.

 

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Cavanaugh is shattering the traditional construct of what a dancer should look like (he created the hashtag “#DancersComeInAllSizes” to help accomplish that goal) on Instagram and beyond with appearances on America’s Got Talent, Dance Magazine, and even (hail!) Oprah Magazine. And bravo to him for doing it, it’s not easy putting yourself out there but one thing is for sure, dude has got some balls, which we confirmed by zooming in on Cavanaugh in his leotard in one of his videos. Cavanaugh’s passion and skill have earned him some famous followers: Ashton Kutcher, Jennifer Garner, and (hail!) Oprah. But even with these famous fans, he’s touched a lot of people and has inspired others to follow their passions. The ballet beauty Lizzy Howell is one of those who’s feed @LizzyDances is also worth your attention as someone who subscribes to the Cavanaugh school of thought.

 

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Check out his page, you may learn a few new moves, but even if you don’t you will definitely witness someone who is pursuing their passion regardless of their physical appearance, stereotypes, or what you may think.  And regardless of what you think, I wouldn’t make fun of him for being a dancer because the dude could definitely kick your ass.

See some of our favorite performances below. Slay, Erik!

 

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*** For anyone out there who is just looking to start shit, we at HEYO do not believe in body shaming AT ALL. It’s completely unacceptable and kinda exactly opposite to our way of thinking. We’re talking about Cavanaugh’s body here only because it’s inconsistent with what YOU (and that’s you in the plural….like, extreme plural…) have defined as what a dancer’s body should look like, and to highlight how cool we think he is for doing his thing and giving those societal constructs a big ol’ Middle Finger. DANCE ON, ERIK. ****

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