Maddie Ziegler

by Earl Godwin

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Soaring for Miles in the Teeth of the Wind, My Trusty Companion SmartPhone At My Side
Jeté-setting child dancer Maddie Ziegler possesses a panmedia charisma thanks chiefly to her sublimating flexibility. She’s everywhere. From show-stealing appearances on Lifetime’s Dance Moms, to her Internet-breaking display of talent in Sia’s “Chandelier” music video. Ziegler’s media allegro is impossible to keep up with—she’s modeled for Ralph Lauren, been the spokesperson for Capezio, appeared in an episode of ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars, and even hosted New York Fashion Week for The Ellen DeGeneres Show. And now she’s ready for another battement développé. Ziegler’s currently filming The Book of Henry, which to date is set to star Lee Pace, Naomi Watts, and oh-so-brilliant Sarah Silverman. Based on this dancer’s tenure, it would seem she’s destined for a career allongée.

You seem to be coping very well with celebrity—did you anticipate the level of fame that you would have when you first collaborated with Sia?

Not at all! I never thought it would blow up like it did. I’m just a teen from Pittsburgh and I cannot believe I got to work on this amazing project with Sia.

Are you happy being homeschooled, or does part of you wish you could have the whole regular school experience?

I’m so happy because I can travel around the world working on projects without having to worry about missing school.

Do you ever take a day off from dancing? What do you do?

I do not unless I have another job. If you miss a day of dance for fun, that’s a day wasted without your daily training. As much as I love having fun, dance comes first.

How do you feel acting is different from dance?

I actually consider acting and dancing the same in some ways. They both use emotion, memorization, and performing.

It seems like you have a full career ahead of you as a dancer, actor, and model—what else would you like to do?

When I get older, I would love to be a dance teacher or a hair and makeup artist.

What is some of your favorite music right now?

I love anything Sia, Sam Smith, The Weeknd, and Fetty Wap.

What’s your favorite new object? It can be anything.

My favorite new object would be a Skywalker! They are by far the coolest thing in the world! Plus, it takes you places faster than walking!

Photographer: Zach Gross at zachgross.com.

Stylist: Jimi Urquiaga at jimiurquiaga.com.

Hair: Elsa CaNEdo for defactoinc.com.

Makeup: Homa Safar for krop.com.

Beauty Notes: CAUDALIE beauty elixir, MURAD perfecting day cream, and M.A.C Cosmetics

Special thanks to Daniel Shapiro.