Exclusive: Tough Love with Abby Lee Miller!

Dance Moms is back! The glitter, the yelling, the drama and oh yes, the dance moves. 

LifeStyle YOU sat down with resident dance coach Abby Lee Miller for an exclusive Q&A on everything from her teaching methods, her haters to what she really thinks about those dance moms.

Hi Abby! We're so excited to talk to you. We've heard you're coming to Australia in July for a tour - are you excited? 

SO EXCITED! I don't know what I'm doing yet. I heard you can go to lunch where all the Koala's are? I definitely want to pat a kangaroo. I know a couple of dancers from Australia and they're very attractive! I want to be surrounded by hot men.

I think that can be arranged! Now, we're about to start Series 3 of Dance Moms here in Australia but I would love to know how the show actually came about? What made you want to do a reality show?

A hot guy from Australia (laughs). He was a professional dancer in L.A and he had worked with everyone! He was very successful. He was starting to come to the end of his career and start to do something else and start to transition and he had this idea to do a show about competitive dance and all their crazy moms. I was never meant to be in the show though, I signed up without reading the contract which was my mistake. After the producers saw me go nuts on this one mother they said 'We have to have her on the show!'

Did you expect Dance Moms to be such a success?

Are you kidding?! I never thought anyone would even watch the show! That's why I signed the contract, I thought no one would be interested (laughs)

What's been the craziest outburst you've ever seen from a mother on or off the show?

Oh my gosh! are you kidding?! Oh my.... there have been so so so so many! We have had people in the studio who've had affairs with my secretaries, people who are married and then take their kids to dance conventions then hook up with other parents! It's horrible because the kid's are so mortified they can't even walk back into the studio. Once a woman handcuffed herself to my door because she wouldn't leave after I kicked her out and I had to call the cops.... she just WOULD NOT LEAVE! It was hysterical actually.

Your teaching methods are quite controversial - do the criticisms upset you or is it water off a ducks back?

Water off a ducks back - I was a lot tougher 20 years ago. I've mellowed in my older age. Look, bottom line is I get results. You see me being tough on the kids but usually I'm angry at the producers and the crew and that's what is shown on TV. We shoot 90 hours of film to make 1 hour of TV so I'm nice the first 80 hours but it's the last 10 hours that goes to air (laughs)

Is there anything they've asked you to do that you flat out refuse to do? We got a lot of questions from fans who wanted to know how 'real' this reality show is. Is it scripted?

Oh my god, are you kidding me?! Don't you think that if it was scripted that Kelly would be able to actually form sentences? If she was reading a script she would actually make sense.... her grammer would be a lot better. So no, it's not scripted at all. The mothers are worse OFF camera (laughs)

Which Dance Moms are you close to? Who do you hang out with off camera?

I get along with Melissa, Holly & Jill. I'm bringing them with me down under! All the ones I like anyways.

We also have 'Abby's Ultimate Dance Competition' coming soon, how did that experience compare to Dance Moms?

OH MY GOD! I love that show! I'm so excited you guys get to see it. The only problem with that show was that I didn't get to audition the contestants. I was busy filming Dance Moms so I missed alot of the pre production stages of that show and the auditions were left to people who don't have a dance background. But I loved loved working on that show.

How do you respond to critics who think some of your outfits are too 'sexy' for such young girls?

I think that I am one of the only dance teachers in America that actually dresses their students in appropriate costumes. I use a lot of street wear, pretty little dresses.... I think it's what the moms dress them in is worse! People are just looking for something to whine about. It's theatrical! It's a costume for god's sake.

What did you think of Maddie's performance in Sia's video clip for 'Chandelier'?

So proud. Maddie get's a lot of stick for being my favourite but... she is! She is incredible and her performance was incredible. That routine is so mature - it wasn't about her being perfect, it was about looking quirky, weird, dirty and she took the choreographers advice perfectly. Actually, I wasn't able to be with her that day and neither could her mother so she had to go with her Aunt who knows nothing about dance to an enviroment she knew nothing about and they threw her to the wolves.  She just blew it out of the water and never complained! This is what I do - I train working, employable dancers. 

And Sia is an Aussie!

Sia has been incredible and so supportive of Maddie. Sia and her team were a dream to work with.

Dance Moms Series 3 premieres Wednesday June 4th only on LifeStyle YOU.

Interview by Francisco Torres

Want more? We thought you might like this video.

Like this artice? Subscribe to our newsletter to get more articles like this delivered striaght to your inbox.

By registering you agree to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Privacy Notice


Sign Out

Join the Conversation

Please note, LifeStyle cannot respond to all comments posted in our comments feed. If you have a comment or query you would like LifeStyle to respond to, please use our feedback form.