‘Dance Moms’: Why Pyramid Took Hours to Shoot and Was the ‘Worst Day of the Week’

Any fan of Dance Moms knows just how important pyramid was to the show. Each episode, Abby Lee Miller would unveil the headshot of each dancer on her Junior Elite Competition Team until she got to the dancer on top. Those on the bottom were encouraged to work harder while the person on the top was praised for their hard work and often rewarded with a solo. But, as much pyramid drama as Dance Moms fans saw onscreen, it was nothing compared to what happened behind the scenes.

Dance Moms cast episodes
Dance Moms Season 2 cast | Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Pyramid was all essential to all but a few episodes of Dance Moms. But, they typically took up no more than 10 minutes of air time. Which is why most fans will be shocked to learn that the cast of Dance Moms filmed pyramid for hours on end each and every week. In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, Dr. Holly Hatcher-Frazier, Melissa Gisoni, Kelly Hyland, and Jill Vertes got candid about just how volatile pyramid was each week.

The infamous pyramids on ‘Dance Moms’ took hours to film

While most fans of Dance Moms assumed that Miller controlled the pyramid and where each dancer was placed, it was actually the show’s producers who did. They also selected who was going to perform a solo, duet, or trio for that particular week. Naturally, this caused lots of friction with Miller and sparked fights that caused filming to be significantly delayed.

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The [Dance Moms] producers were the one that actually made the pyramid,” Gisoni shared. “And sometimes we would wait for hours to go into pyramid because Abby would be fighting with the producers and then, you know, the pyramid. I mean then we’d stand there for five hours literally. I mean that was the worst day of the week for the girls and for us.” Vertes immediately agreed with her Dance Moms castmate. “Yeah, all the fights happened on pyramid day. You’re exactly right.”

Abby Lee Miller constantly fought with the producers

And as bad as the fights got between the moms, apparently they were even worse between the Dance Moms producers and Miller. In fact, Miller was known for storming off set because she was so against what the producers of the show had in mind. Whenever she left set, it only made for a longer day for the dancers and their moms.

“She always wanted to change their plans, their pyramid, their solos,” Vertes shared about Miller’s infamous arguments with the Dance Moms producers. “So we would wait. We would come, sit, ready to film and sit there sometimes for hours waiting for Abby and the and the producers to quit. their fighting and arguing. And how many times guys did she storm out, get in her car, pull away, and we’re sitting there, an hour two later she comes back.”

Fans would’ve loved behind-the-scenes episodes of ‘Dance Moms’

It seems that there was much more to the pyramid than Dance Moms fans ever could’ve expected. With ridiculously long film times, it’s no wonder that the moms were typically at each other’s throats on pyramid day. But, personally, we’d have loved to see some episodes of Miller and the producers duking it out instead of the moms.