Burly ballet dancer's stunningly graceful moves make him a viral sensation (VIDEOS)

Burly ballet dancer's stunningly graceful moves make him a viral sensation (VIDEOS)
Plus-size ballerina, Erik Cavanaugh, is redefining the expectation of what a traditional dancer’s body ‘should’ look like.

Erik became an overnight viral hit when a video collage of the 23 year old dancing with magnificent grace and agility was shared on Facebook, amassing more than 9 million views and almost 90,000 shares.

Erik, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in dance from Slippery Rock University in December, currently works in a pizza restaurant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  

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The dancer and choreographer has been bombarded with praise for breaking barriers and inspiring dancers who don’t fit the mould. Instagram commenters have responded enthusiastically with messages including, “look how amazing this man is” and “You have inspired me and made me a better dancer”.

I would love to dance with you you're such an inspiration and absolutely amazing,” another user posted.

"It’s been kind of insane,” Cavanaugh said of the online reaction in an interview with Forbes.

I know that I don’t look like a typical dancer. The Internet isn’t expecting me to jump high and things like that."

Erik said he shares recordings of his routines on Instagram in an attempt to “change the mind and shape of dancers.”

I am not ashamed of who I am,” Cavanaugh said. “I’m trying to inspire children that may look like myself that all dreams are capable.”