Image for Sia Responds To Concerns Over 15-Year-Old Dancer Maddie ZieglerPhoto: Suzi Pratt / Getty Images

Sia Responds To Concerns Over 15-Year-Old Dancer Maddie Ziegler

Written by Tom Williams on December 7, 2017

Sia has responded to concerns over 15-year-old dancer and Dance Moms star Maddie Ziegler, who performs alongside the pop star at concerts and appears in many of her music videos.

Taking to Twitter today, Sia addressed a recent story in The Guardian titled ‘The Sia conundrum: if fame is so damaging, why pass it on to a child?’, which questioned what effect Sia — a star who has rejected the spotlight after struggling with fame — has had by making Ziegler the face of her music.

After seeing Ziegler perform with Sia in Sydney last week, The Guardian‘s Bonnie Malkin wrote that despite Ziegler’s embrace of her own fame, “In this case, the grown-up who has seen what fame can do and fears it has, perhaps unwittingly, handed it over to the child instead.”

In response, Sia has told fans, “This article poses a question I have asked myself often.

“I do check in with Maddie weekly about whether she wants this, and assure her if she ever wants it to stop it stops. It’s a conversation we should all be having. Not just myself but all directors, stage parents and agents.

“With their children, clients, charges. Maddie was already famous when I discovered her, but I have certainly expanded her exposure and feel responsible for that. I feel very protective of her and my goal is to empower her in whatever choices she makes.

“Some would argue a teenager can’t or shouldn’t be charged with making sound choices for themselves and so I do try to choose the best for her always. But I think this is an important conversation.

“What I learned from Maddie is that fame affects her differently than how it affected me. I can only trust that she is telling me the truth. If that changes, we stop.”

Ziegler is yet to publicly comment on the Guardian article.

Sia is currently working on a film called Sister, which will star Ziegler and Kate Hudson. The film is “about a sober drug dealer and his autistic sister”, she told the Philippine Daily Inquirer last year.

Ziegler just wrapped up an Australian tour with Sia, which saw her perform in Melbourne and Sydney. The Melbourne show was criticised by some fans for Sia’s purportedly lack of engagement, while Sia was almost late for her Sydney show due to some bad weather and diarrhoea.

Read Sia’s full comments on the Guardian article, below.

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