With Black Lives Matter protests underway across the nation and racism in the spotlight, former stars of Lifetime’s Dance Moms are speaking out about their experiences on the reality show.
Adriana Smith who appeared on season 8 with daughter Kamryn shared a lengthy post on Instagram Tuesday detailing interactions with the show’s star Abby Lee Miller.
‘A statement from her that sticks in my mind to this day during my time on DMS8 is ‘I know you grew up in the HOOD with only a box of 8 crayons, but I grew up in the country club with a box of 64—don’t be stupid,” she alleged.
Speaking out: Adriana Smith, who appeared on Dance Moms season 8 with daughter Kamryn, shared a lengthy post on Instagram alleging Abby Lee Miller used racist comments
Controversial : Smith claimed Miller tried to infer she and her daughter were ‘stupid’ because they were black and they were only on the reality show to provide ‘a sprinkle of color’
Anger: Smith posted to social media as Black Lives Matter protests continued following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis after a white police officer knelt on his neck
‘This my friends is not something or a statement that can be googled. Ask yourself what does that mean? This to me shows that you think you are better than me and in higher rank and all together superior to ME!’
Smith went on to claim on social media that on one occasion, Miller said: ‘Do you want me to tell you why you are really here?’
Smith wrote: ‘LOL as if I didn’t know…again showing your superiority. Let me remind you what you said in case you forgot. You told me to ‘LOOK in the MIRROR! That’s the only reason you are here!’ Kam told me she heard ‘they need a sprinkle of color!”
Reality TV: Dance Moms premiered on Lifetime in 2011. It centered on Miller and her Abby Lee Dance Company, the girls aged six to 15 whom she trained and their competitive mothers
Statement: Smith, pictured with Kamryn at their Dance Moms audition, said she quit the show because ‘I knew that it was more important for me to show my daughter that she had to stand up for what’s right and not care about anything else’
Smith claimed it was then that she knew she and her daughter had to quit Dance Moms.
‘As tears streamed down my face, I look over at my 7 year old and back at the camera and say, this is my EVERYDAY life as a black woman. This is nothing new to me. But what I’m not going to have happen is have this racist person have any part of my daughter’s life as of this moment,’ she shared.
‘At that moment, I knew that it was more important for me to show my daughter that she had to stand up for what’s right and not care about anything else,’ she went on. ‘But in that interview, my little 7 year old cried like a GROWN black woman and stood up and said, ‘Mom I understand it’s not right here and I want to go home too….”
Miller has not publicly responded to Smith’s claims.
More claims: Season 7 mom Camille Bridges told E! News in an email that she also felt her daughter Camryn had been discriminated against by Miller because she is black
Season 7 mom Camille Bridges told E! News in an email that she also felt her daughter Camryn had been discriminated against because she is black.
She alleged Miller ‘loves appropriating our culture and never appreciating it.’
She claimed: ‘She did not give black choreographers on the show acknowledgment of their work. She continuously put Camryn in afros.’
In her email to E! News, Bridges said that when Miller went to jail in 2017 after pleading guilty to felony bankruptcy fraud, she’d assumed Miller would not be coming back to the show.
‘When she returned, I looked at Camryn and told her we’re leaving,’ Bridges wrote, according to the outlet.
‘I didn’t care anymore about the ‘platform.’ I was done. The woman is a mess. She is incredibly two-faced. She would say the most terrible things on camera, then tell Camryn how she was better than the girls on the team, mainly the ones she trained. It was a traumatic experience that I wish on no one.’
Came back: Following Miller’s release from prison after pleading guilty to felony bankruptcy fraud in 2017, she returned for an eighth season of Dance Moms that debuted in June 2019
Dance Moms premiered on Lifetime in 2011 and ran for seven uninterrupted seasons.
It centered on Miller and her Abby Lee Dance Company and the girls aged six to 15 whom she trained as well as their competitive mothers.
Following her release from prison, Lifetime announced there would an eighth season of the show which would focus on Miller’s cancer diagnosis as well as her training of a team of eight young dancers. The season debuted in June 2019.
This past May 4, Miller announced via Instagram that she is parting ways with Lifetime after nine years and hopes to pursue other projects.
Moving on: On May 4, Miller, who was diagnosed with Burkitt lymphoma after spinal surgery, announced she is parting ways with Lifetime and hopes to pursue other projects