Maddie Ziegler, the young dancer best known for dancing for Sia, seemed to be living the dream when she appeared on Dance Moms but it looks like her experience being coached by Abby Lee Miller was in fact more like a nightmare!
In her book The Maddie Diaries: A Memoir, she talked more about the pressure she felt being the team leader.
“I did a lot of crying in those early competitions,” Ziegler, who is now 14, wrote.
“My nerves were really bad because I felt so much was riding on every single number we performed. If you watch me in the wings, you’ll always see me biting my nails. I put a lot of pressure on myself, I didn’t want to disappoint anyone – my teachers, my teammates, my mom, our audience.”
Furthermore, she also claimed in her memoir that Miller often forced her to perform even though she was extremely sick.
“There were many, many times I had to push through and compete, even if I was feeling sick.”7
“I remember I once had bronchitis and I could barely breathe without coughing, but I had a solo and a group number to get through. I literally had to hold my breath through the numbers so I wouldn’t start a coughing fit,” Maddie revealed.
Although prior to joining Miller’s dance team she imagined that it would be “awesome,” as years went by she realized it wasn’t the best.
“As I got older, the competitions got much more intense.”
“The fierce competitive side of all this was something I never saw coming… Things can and do get ugly sometimes because people don’t behave like good sports. Sometimes people go a little crazy.”
Maddie was Miller favorite on the show and she was often given solos because of that, as well as the lead in group performances.
Because she was obviously favoring her, drama ensued between Maddie and the other contestants.