Dance… as if everyone is watching
If there is one thing this Raw Diva is passionate about -- other than stepping into the ring and giving the WWE Universe her all -- it's dancing. Layla has been moving and shaking since the tender age of 2.
"It's in my blood. When I am dancing, it just feels real. It feels like it's a part of me. For as long as I can remember, as soon as music starts to play, I am moving," the British beauty explained.
Layla was never sure of exactly what she wanted to do in life, but was always positive she wanted to be successful. After spending some time in school studying law, the natural dancer decided performing arts was her true path. Before joining WWE, Layla strutted her stuff on the basketball court as a dancer for the Miami Heat, and performed with the likes of Kanye West and P-Diddy. It was in 2006 that she decided to try-out for the $250,000 WWE Diva Search contest.
"When I first heard about the competition, I laughed it off thinking there's no way I could do this," Layla said. "I was looking at the girls, like Chyna, and then looking at myself. I didn't think there was any chance. But eventually, I just decided ‘Why not?' and woke up the day of the audition and went in."
Layla was two-and-a-half hours late for her Diva Search audition, but was still allowed to show WWE what she could do. She went on to win the entire contest, earning her a spot on the SmackDown roster. It would be a few months until her in-ring debut in October 2006 as part of a Diva Trick-or-Treat Battle Royal.
In January 2007, Layla shimmied her way over to the Land of the Extreme where she was given her golden chance to slip on her dancing shoes for WWE fans. Alongside Kelly Kelly, Layla performed as a member of Extreme Exposé. Since then, the luscious lass believes she has only been able to brush the surface in terms of showing off what she's capable of in the realm of dancing.
"I don't really choreograph anything when I am out there. I just let them play the music and I dance. I would love to work on my routines a bit more. I really want the fans to see what I can do."
Layla joined the Raw roster by means of the 2008 WWE Draft. It is in front of the Raw Universe that she hopes to get her opportunity to really let loose.
When WWE's first British Diva is not living out her greatest dreams, she is wearing her enormous heart on her sleeve, participating in as many charitable events as possible.
"I want to really evolve. I want to do as much as I can as an entertainer, as well as a person," Layla expressed. "I want to be a good role model for everyone, but especially kids -- girls. And girls of different ethnicities. I want them to see that they can be positive and obtain whatever they want if they really work for it."
Most recently, Layla supported former New York Giants defensive end George Martin in raising money and awareness for the rescue workers experiencing health issues related to the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. She was also a part of the Read Across America initiative, in which she encouraged literacy, and is a spokesperson for WWE's WrestleMania 25 Reading Challenge.
"I have been very blessed in my life and now I want to really give back. I think that is so important for everyone, but especially people with some sort of recognition."
Recognition is something Layla certainly has. But getting to where she is now was no dance in the park. This Diva from across the pond worked especially hard and now basks in a well-deserved spotlight.
"I came to the States with dreams and I accomplished them. I said I was going to travel and dance and I did that. As soon as I saw a Miami Heat game, I said I was going to be a dancer for them and I did that, too. And now I'm with WWE. So far, I have met all of the goals I set for myself. That's a really great feeling."