Skip to main content

When Dance Moms first aired, viewers were totally wrapped up in the life of the little dancers who attended the Abby Lee Dance Company. We got to know Abby Lee Miller herself, the owner of the dance company with the ultra-polarizing personality that often caused conflict with the young dancer’s moms. And, of course, there were a few standout performers on the show who ended up making it big with their talent. Maddie Ziegler, a dancer who began her art as soon as she could walk, was one of them.

Nowadays, you won’t see Maddie Ziegler making any appearances on Dance Moms, as she quit the show. Here’s why she’s moving on to bigger and better things.

Maddie said Dance Moms put her under a ton of pressure

Being a kid, following your dreams, and having it all filmed for the world to see would be stressful for anyone. And after six seasons with the show, Maddie Ziegler had wanted something different for herself and her career. While the Abby Lee Dance Company certainly helped her hone her skills as a dancer and advance herself in the arts, she told Seventeen that since leaving the show, she’s felt “so free.”

There’s no doubt that Maddie was always Abby Lee Miller’s favorite, too. And while being well-loved by your instructor is nice, it also put the pressure on the young star to perform at her best every single time — even if it meant pushing herself to the brink. According to Bustle, Maddie said in an interview, “I feel like I had so much more pressure on me to be the best in the room.” Viewers also noted that Abby’s intense tactics seemed like they’d be too much for the little dancers, and Maddie confirmed to Seventeen that the teacher in real life is “exactly how she is on the show.”

She also reportedly no longer speaks to Abby Lee Miller

Maddie doesn’t speak badly about Abby Lee Miller even after leaving the show. In fact, Maddie doesn’t speak of her instructor too often at all — and this had many fans wondering if the two had a significant fallout with each other after Season 6 of Dance Moms. As Maddie told Us Weekly, “We don’t keep in contact. But I wish her the best.” It seems Abby had more to say regarding the matter, however.

Us Weekly notes in the Lifetime special Dance Moms: Abby Lee Tells All, Abby expressed her deep disappointment for having no connection with Maddie today “’cause that’s not the kid I raised,” she said. The Dance Moms instructor also noted that she doesn’t believe Maddie would have had the success she has today without her assistance. Abby went on to say, “I tell my friends, ‘She’s adorable, she’s wonderful! It’s a great film!’ I look at what she has done, and the other jobs and the other opportunities besides Dance Moms, they all involve dancing, they’re all about dance, they’re all judging dance, dancing, performing, something!”

Maddie is happy to be moving on and working with Sia today

With Dance Moms behind her, Maddie has a lot more time and energy to focus on her bigger projects, many of which still involve dance. Daily Mail Online reminds us the singer Sia has Maddie as her dancing muse, and the dancer is often featured in Sia’s music videos and tours. Sia even bought Maddie a car for her 16th birthday. It’s clear the two have a special bond that Maddie never had with Abby Lee Miller.

Aside from her work with Sia, Maddie has also gone on to publish her own books and memoirs, judge on So You Think You Can Dance, and work on her acting skills on the big screen. Leaving Dance Moms certainly hasn’t held her back in her teen years. If anything, it may have catapulted her forward.

Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook!