Abby Lee Miller Decides It's Time To Move On

I love binge-watching episodes of my favorite television shows as much as the next person.  I find myself having an affinity for any and all reality shows, and my guilty pleasure is watching anything on the Lifetime network.  I have been an avid fan of Dance Moms since the very beginning, and the hardworking girls, overinvolved mothers, and unique dance teacher have stolen my heart.

Dance Moms has been airing since 2011 and follows the journey of girls learning new dances within a week and performing them at a dance competition.  They get new dances and attend a new competition every week.  They are closely monitored by their overbearing mothers in the hopes to become the number one dancer and be at the top of the elusive pyramid, a feat that some dancers can only dream of accomplishing.  Each dancer fights to be the best and to please the one and only Abby Lee Miller.  Miller is exceptionally known around the dance community and the world for producing very touching, controversial, and emotional dances, such as “Where Have All the Children Gone,” “Hotline,” “Amber Alert,” and “The Last Text,” among several others.  She has also produced very talented, versatile, and employable dancers.  After studying at her studio, many of her students have continued on to pursue dance as a career path, and many of them have found success in these endeavors, including Broadway, the Disney Company, and making it big in Hollywood. 

Perhaps those who are not fully aware of the Dance Moms following are aware of the success of one of her most famous students, Maddie Ziegler.  Ziegler took the world by storm when she appeared in Sia’s “Chandelier” video released in 2014 dressed as Sia and performing very character and advanced choreography.  Since then, Ziegler’s fame has skyrocketed, and so has the Dance Moms’ following.  Dance Moms has made waves in the dance community by raising awareness and showing the importance of teaching dance properly.  Many dancers aspire to emulate the girls on the show in hopes that one day, they can achieve their dreams of becoming a professional dancer.

After seven seasons and a lifetime of dance teaching and experience, Miller took to Instagram last week to state that she has decided to leave the show. She states that she has wanted to be credited for the creativity of her ideas concerning the dances, costuming, and themes and has been shut down every time by the executive staff. She says that she is through with “being manipulated, disrespected, and used-day in and day out by men who never took a dance lesson in their lives and treat women like dirt.” Despite this extreme announcement, she still takes a moment to acknowledge the fact that everything she does is for the kids.  She has dedicated her livelihood to working with kids and greatly enjoys it and relishes in their successes. Leaving Dance Moms is a huge step for Miller, and she is still awaiting sentencing from pleading guilty to bankruptcy fraud. 

In the following days, Miller also took to Instagram to share comments of love from other dance teachers, dancers, and fans whose lives she has impacted.  She has changed the way the world looks at dance, and they are very grateful. Whatever the future holds for Miller, I wish her the best of luck in whatever she pursues. I’m not a dancer, but she has shown me that you must believe in yourself in every aspect of your life. Thank you for being there for the past six years; I was, am, and always will be a fan of Dance Moms, no matter how much it changes.