Uniontown native Bradlee Laight wasn’t the kind of boy who stayed still for very long. And now, as a cast member of a new kind of morning show on Lifetime Network, Laight is motivating others to move as well.
According to its website, “Dance It Out” (DIO), which airs Saturday mornings from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Lifetime, is the first ever moving fitness talk show hosted by Billy Blanks Jr. “Shark Tank” celebrity and international fitness icon.
Laight, 25, graduated from Laurel Highlands High School in 2013, and grew up with dancing in his blood — literally. Laight’s family ran Houck Dance Studio, which now called HDS by Ariel and operated by Laight’s sister, Ariel Vicites. Laight is a son of Brian and Melody (Houck) Laight. As a dancer at the studio, Laight won numerous regional and national dance competitions. He enjoyed all disciplines of dance, including tap, jazz, ballet and gymnastics, but said tap was always his favorite.
“I enjoyed any form of dance — I was always looking for a way to be loud, create rhythm,” said Laight.
He also enjoyed golf, basketball, playing video games and just hanging out with friends.
DIO premiered on Lifetime on Feb. 15.
On the show, Blanks leads a high-calorie, fun-filled dance workout with eight professional dancers, one of which is Laight. But the point, Laight said, is really to get the audience moving along with them.
“It’s like Zumba. It’s kind of like that. It’s for everyone, every age, every fitness level,” added Laight. “It’s just to get you up moving. You’re at home. No one is watching you.”
In addition, every show features inspirational guests who share their stories of overcoming life’s challenges through dance and movement. Celebrities in the world of fitness, music and Broadway also make surprise appearances to dance along with featured guests, according to the website.
Laight, who lives in New York City now, answered the call for dancers from an audition website, along with 500 other people. Laight was one of six main dancers selected from the field of 500. Laight recalled there were male dancers that towered over him.
“It was pretty crazy. Here I am 5-foot 8 little Bradlee. I did my thing, and I guess they liked it,” said Laight.
This is actually Laight’s second experience in a fitness video. At just 10 years old, Laight was cast in a Denise Austin workout video. As a child actor, he also performed with the famous Radio City Rockettes in the Christmas Spectacular and appeared in a Comcast commercial with the Pittsburgh Steelers. But being cast as a regular on DIO was his first big television role. It was definitely a new experience.
“I had never filmed a television show,” said Laight. “It was eye-opening and a learning experience.”
Laight added that working with Blanks has been an “incredible” experience.
Laight has experienced some amazing things in his young life. It’s not something as a child he could’ve ever imagined. But, he said, anything is possible. He knows there’s talent in Uniontown and around Fayette County.
“Everyone has their own path and may want a career in the industry, but you just need to know who you are inside and out and stick to it,” said Laight.
He also said to make it, really make it, you must be committed to your craft. Laight works two jobs, six days a week just to be able to “pay the bills.” He’s a dog walker and works for a catering company, where he serves drinks and dances at high corporate special events.
In addition, Laight continues to perfect his skills with voice lessons, dance instruction and other courses.
“You have to be one step ahead,” said Laight.
He had one final piece of advice.
“If a small town kid like me can do it, anyone can. No matter what keep shooting for the starts. Anything is possible.”
The next episode of DIO airs at 10:30 a.m. Feb. 22.