Shimmering Star Spotlight: Kinley Cunningham

Each month YAYOMG! selects a Shimmering Star to spotlight. Follow along as we shine a light on girls who represent kindness, positivity, empowerment, philanthropy, drive, and confidence. They’re sure to inspire you!

It’s February, which means we’re shifting into pink mode for this heart-filled month! Being sparkly and sweet comes naturally for our newest Shimmering Star, Kinley Cunningham, whose empowering words and amazing dance moves fill our feeds daily.

Kinley is entering a new era, one where she’s taking the reigns and showing the world what she’s made of. Her first single, Heart Beats, isn’t just well-timed for Valentine’s season – it’s an inspiring anthem about forging your own path, making your own happiness, and a reminder that your heart is capable of beating on its own – a message that isn’t only for her fans, but one Kinley herself takes to heart.

She’s been building anticipation for the song, teasing the single drop – along with a music video and merch – for weeks now, and it finally debuts tomorrow, February 2nd. (You can pre-save it HERE)

Cover art for Kinley Cunningham's Single "Heartbeats"
(Image Provided by Kinley Cunningham)

Kinley’s enthusiasm, determination, and talent are evident, serving as the heartbeat running through all of her dance routines, social shares, acting gigs, and now, her music. She’s always hard at work on something new and has two more songs on the way, in addition to quite a few other projects in the works. It’s clear that Kinley is making 2024 her year, taking her own advice, going full out, and sinking her heart and her talents into everything she does. We can’t wait to see what’s next for her!

Her optimism and glittery spirit have inspired her fans since the very beginning, and encouraging other kids to embrace their talents and follow their dreams is something she’s super passionate about. Her motto is “be you, be kind, go full out”, a message she’s been championing for years. Kinley also works to spread kindness not just on social but offline too, and has worked with Dancers Against Cancer, an organization that brings the dancers to help support and fundraise for dancers, choreographers, and other members of the dance community who’ve been affected by cancer.

Get to know Kinley Cunningham as she dishes on Heart Beats, the importance of going full out, and her biggest dream (it might surprise you!), and more!

Get to Know Kinley Cunningham:

Kinley Cunningham with hearts painted on her face in a swirly top and pink pants
(Photo Credit: Jen Rosenstein)

Tell us a little bit about YOU!

KINLEY CUNNINGHAM: I love to dance, sing and act. Performing is my life and I love it so much! I also love skincare, taking ukelele and piano lessons, fashion, and spending time with friends and family. 

Your first solo single, Heart Beats, is out tomorrow! Tell us a little bit about the song!

KINLEY: I am so excited for my first single to come out! Heart Beats was written by my music manager, Alisan Porter, and her writing partner, Ely Rise.

The lyrics are personal, and I really want everyone to know that it’s so important to stay true to who you are. Your happiness is up to you. I want anyone who listens to my song to feel like they don’t need to change who they are for anyone. It’s so easy with social media to feel like you need to be something you’re not.

As the lyrics say, your heart can beat “on its own,” and your happiness should not be up to anyone but you. You can do anything you set your mind to as long as you are yourself. I hope when people hear my song they can relate to it like I do!

What are a few things you heart most?

KINLEY: I heart dancing, singing, acting, my family, my friends, my dogs Malibu and Millie and my cat, Bella.

Kinley Cunningham in a ribbed pink tank, pink armwarmers, and jeans covered in pink, yellow, and red hearts
(Image via @kinleyfullout)

Singing, dancing, acting – you’ve already done so much! What would you say is your proudest moment so far, and what is something you’d still like to accomplish?

KINLEY: My proudest moment so far is releasing my first single, Heart Beats as a solo artist. It hasn’t always been easy, but I’ve worked really hard to get here, and I’m super thankful and grateful for all the support everyone has shown me so far.

I’m also getting really into acting. I have an amazing manager and agents and am working towards booking more jobs in movies and TV now that I have more time to pursue them. 

How do you shine bright?

KINLEY: I like to think I shine bright by inspiring other young people to be themselves. I love to support others using my social media platforms. My slogan is be you, be kind, go full out, which means always be yourself, always be kind no matter what you are doing, and whatever you do, do it the best and most full out that you can!

The women who inspire me are…

KINLEY: My mom inspires me the most. I couldn’t do what I do without her. My Grandma and Mimi also inspire me a lot!

My dance teacher, Mollee Gray, also inspires me, as well as my vocal coach and music manager, Alisan Porter. I’m so thankful to have so many amazing women in my life. 

Kinley Cunnhingham standing on a staircase in a pink dress
(Image via @kinleyfullout)

I am most passionate about…

KINLEY: Performing! Even when I’m not supposed to be dancing, acting or singing, I’m dancing, acting, or singing. It’s literally my passion, and my life is so full because I get to do what I love!

I also love inspiring other young people to work hard and never give up until they achieve their dreams! 

I feel most confident when…

KINLEY: I’m on stage or in front of a camera. I just feel like I come alive when I’m performing for people. 

My biggest dream is…

KINLEY: To be in a horror movie! I love horror movies and want to be in one so so bad! 

The advice I want to share with other girls is…

KINLEY: You don’t have to change who you are for anyone. If people don’t love you for the real you, those people aren’t meant to be in your life. Always do what makes you happy, and never give up on your dreams. Also, whatever you do, do it full out!

⭐️Need even more girl power inspo? Catch up on our Shimmering Star Spotlight series HERE!

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