Maddie Ziegler may have started her career as one of Abby Lee's beleaguered dancing girls on Dance Moms, but she has since become a star in her own right. So, who is Maddie Ziegler? While she is largely known for her reality TV roots and for her dancing with Sia, Ziegler is a true multi-hyphenate - a dancer/actress/model/author. And she is poised to become of the biggest stars of her time.
The Maddie Ziegler biography begins in 2002, when Madison Nicole Ziegler was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She was raised there with her younger sister, who also appeared on Dance Moms; Maddie has two older half-brothers and two older step-siblings. Maddie showed great promise early in life, and she started dancing practically from the time she could walk. After her breakout performance on Dance Moms, Sia reached out to Maddie personally, and the rest, as they say, is history. But there may still be a lot of things you didn't know about Maddie Ziegler, a few of which are discussed below.
Talent obviously attracts talent, and it's no real surprise that Ziegler is real life friends with Millie Bobby Brown, one of the standout kids from Netflix's Stranger Things. The two first met because of a mutual admiration for one another. Brown had been a fan of Dance Moms and was invited to a taping of So You Think You Can Dance, the season in which Ziegler was judging. Although they connected immediately, Ziegler hadn't yet seen Stranger Things, and it was only after she went home and watched the show that the two bonded. Ziegler and Brown have since become the definition of squad goals. "She always tries to mimic all of my competition dances," Ziegler lovingly said of Brown.
"Then we just kept talking and became best friends," she told People.
Even though she got her start dancing, that doesn't mean that Ziegler doesn't also have the acting bug. In the summer of 2017, she appeared alongside young talents like Jaeden Lieberher and Jacob Tremblay in The Book of a Henry, a drama that also happened to star Oscar-nominee Naomi Watts. Ziegler played a classmate and friend to Lieberher's Henry. She also managed to score some big points with Watts, who has a young son interested in dancing; Watts told ET:
"My son does tap dance and he was wanting to quit and feeling like he just didn't wanna do it anymore. And I asked [Maddie] to send a message to him. So I videotaped her and she said, 'Kai, don't quit. You've got to give it your all.'"
A pretty kind and smart way to have a talent like Watts on your team forever.
Ziegler didn't really know who Sia was when she was asked to be in the music video for the Australian artist's single "Chandelier." It turns out there was a lot she didn't know about the gig, including the size of the role. “I just knew some of her songs and I thought I was going to be, like, a background dancer with some other people," she told New York Magazine. Little did she know she was intended to be the star of the video. Not only that, but there would be no chandelier and there would be no swinging. It was a star-making appearance for Ziegler, but it also solidified her future collaborations with Sia.
Ziegler may have gotten started dancing when she was two, but it wasn't until she was four that she joined Abby Lee's dance company. This, as many know, led she and her family the opportunity to star in Dance Moms. It didn't take long for Ziegler to become the best dancer on a show full of exceptional dancers. Ziegler may have left after Season 6 of the show, but while she was on, she was Abby Lee's favorite student. Her fame may have complicated this a little bit, but during Ziegler's time on Dance Moms, Abby Lee's preferences were hard to hide - given all the compliments Ziegler would receive from the notoriously tough coach.