Dance Moms, the American reality television series that follows the early training and careers of young dancers under the “tough love” guidance of Abby Lee Miller, is coming to Australia. Nikki Webster of Sydney Olympics fame and owner of her own dance school, Dance @ Nikki Webster, recently made an Instagram post calling any hopeful young dancers to audition for the series, perhaps to be called “Dance Mums”.
In the post, Webster says she is searching for the “best elite troupe in the world”. A more detailed casting call is listed on her website: “Does your child have the dance moves, dedication and drive to be a star? Do they outshine everyone they compete against? Dance Moms Australia could be the beginning of their promising dance career! Australian singer and dancer Nikki Webster and Essential Media are bringing Dance Moms to Australia. Talented dancers across Australia are invited to apply; we’re looking for dancers aged 8-16 years to take part.”
Further audition instructions ask for two 60-second videos uploaded to YouTube – one of the dancer performing a favourite dance routine, and one of an interaction between the dancer and their parent/caregiver.
Dance Moms has been known for the rather harsh criticisms by Miller to the young dancers and for the dramatic bickering between the dancers’ mothers. The show has lasted eight seasons in the US so far, and well-known young dancers such as Maddie Ziegler, Kalani Hilliker, Chloe Lukasiak, Brady Farrar and more (as well as their mothers) have appeared on the series.
It is unclear whether or not Miller will make an appearance on the Australian spin-off, or if Webster will dish with the same demeanor as Miller. But it is clear that many dance teachers and studio owners are worried and/or disgusted that an Australian series is on the cards because of the US show’s negative portrayal of the dance studio environment.
Check out Webster’s initial Instagram post here, and stay tuned for what is to come with Dance Mums Down Under.
By Laura Di Orio of Dance Informa.