Tag Archive for Hannah Epstein

Dance Moms: Miami – Mid Season Review

Dance Moms Miami moms

I haven’t really been recapping every episode because they overlap with 16 and Pregnant, which is what I watch instead.  So, I DVR the show, forget about it for a few days, then finally watch it.  By then, people don’t care about my recaps because they’ve already seen the episode!  Side note: Please make sure Dance Moms is back to 9pm EST.  I don’t like the 10pm time slot at all.

I’m going to review the season up to this point, not an episode by episode recap, but as a whole.  I’ll try not to compare to the original Dance Moms because they should be their own shows, but I know I will because it’s hard not to. Let’s start with the easy one:

The Dancers

Dance Mom Miami dancersThe dancers for this show are around the same age as the original cast, which is the 9-14 or so range.  That would be too young for me to criticize even if I wanted to, but I really don’t. Jessi’s little issue on week 1 aside, the dancers are fantastic with both their skill and personality.

  • Hannah, the one who the moms act like is a terrible dancer is actually really great, and has an even better personality.
  • Jessi is extraordinarily focused, driven and talented.  She’s going to be a star without a doubt.
  • Sammy is also a great dancer, but is still treated as an ‘outcast’, but mostly by the parents.. which I’ll get to.
  • Lucas and Kimmy are super cute, super talented and I’m hoping in 5 years they end up dating.

The Teachers

dance moms miami dance instructorsEvery week I have different feelings towards both Angel and Victor.  Some weeks they’re incredible with both the way they run things, and instruct, other weeks they both sound whiny and annoying.  Let’s break each one down…

  • Angel – He’s more of the wild card every week. Sometimes you’ll see him joking with people, other times he’ll be complaining, whining or trashing the mothers. While it’s entertaining to us for him to trash the mothers, I don’t like how he consistently does it in front of their children. I don’t find that very professional at all, no matter how frustrated he gets with them. Susan was exactly right this recent episode when she was upset that Jessi was starting to sound like Angel in the back talking.  Let the parents parent, teachers teach, and students dance.
  • Victor – While a bit whiny at times, he’s far more consistent with the way he acts and handles himself on a weekly basis.  His focus is clearly on making the children better dancers, and when he does have problems with the parents, you’ll find him in the mothers room yelling at them.

Both instructors compliment each other very well, and work great together, my only hope is that they ease up on the mother bashing in front of the kids.

The Mothers

dance moms miami mothersAs different as Angel and Victor are from Abby Lee, the mothers are the biggest difference between the two shows.  This is probably part of the show I dislike the most, and it’s sad because on their own, the mothers seem like great ladies, but together they get really catty. If they’re not bashing one another, they will be bashing the teachers, or even worse, the children.  The closest the Pittsburgh moms came to bashing the children was when Payton was in the group and Jill would bring up how she doesn’t look like she belonged with the others.

In Miami, Hannah was on the receiving end of a few shots, and based on the previews, looks like it’ll be even more next week when she’s in a trio.  Debi, Abby, and Susan consistently go at each other, and it kind of gets a little old.  Ani and Brigette tend to sit back and watch the other three go at it, but Brigette even gets involved on occasion, leaving Ani as the only drama free mom on the show.


While it’s clear from watching it, and the reactions I see on my fan page, Dance Moms is still heavily favored over Dance Moms: Miami, however I believe it’s mostly because the show simply isn’t Dance Moms.  The two are different shows, but being a spin-off, it’s hard not to compare the two the entire time watching it.  I’d still watch Dance Moms over Miami if I had to choose, but when I watch the Miami version, I do find myself entertained, even if it’s for different reasons than the original.  Hopefully they’ll give it a second season so we can try to form the connection we have with the original cast.

What are your thoughts on the show so far?

You’re All A Bunch Of Lying Animals!

Victor Dance Moms Miami

What did I get myself into?

When Dance Moms: Miami began last night, you just knew the peace and tranquility between the moms was going to be short lived.  It was strange watching them act all… hmm what’s the word I’m looking for…. oh, right… “nice” to each other.  Aside from Susan looking like she was about to shoot laser beams at Victor and Angel when Jessi was still near the bottom of “the list”, the moms were relaxed and ready for an easy week.  Right?  Wrong.

Out of nowhere, the moms started to pile on Abby (Sammy’s mom), and I don’t mean that in a Cinemax after-dark type of way.  This was bordering crazy, unless there is a side to Abby that we’ve yet to see because of editing.  So far, DMM has portrayed Abby as a drama free Jill, someone who just wants what’s best for her daughter by coming to a new school.   That’s entirely possible, but to see the way the moms have been treating her either means there is some “behind the scenes” stuff we’re not seeing, or competitive dancing is named more for the moms than the dancers.

Debi (Hannah’s mom) has had a history with Abby at a former school, and from what Susan and Brigette said, has been trying real hard to sabotage Abby and Sammy’s welcome into the studio.  It sounds a little Melrose Place for me, and felt the moms were exaggerating a little, until Abby pulled Victor and Angel to the side and confronted them on the issue.  Victor all but confirmed that Debi did indeed approach him on trying to sabotage Sammy’s choreography.  Wild stuff.  (side note, I don’t  believe, nor does Abby, that Victor or Angel would actually go along with that. Their reputation and careers are on the line, and not going to sacrifice that for some petty issues)

I thought it was pretty ruthless when Melissa took the guy out to lunch in L.A. to try and secure a better spot in the music video for Maddy, but if Debi is really trying to sabotage another dancers future, she should be ashamed and hopefully learns from this.   I’m in the camp that you do what you have to in order to push your child further, but not at the expense of knocking someone else back.  What Melissa did was a little sneaky, but fine.. what Debi did was not so fine.

Would you like a mint?

Aside from the drama, it was actually a pretty light episode.  The teachers showed compassion and a sense of humor this week by first sitting all the kids down and talking about their insecurities, and then having some fun by making them act like their moms.  The funniest part was when little Kimmy acted like her mom, Ani, by offering a mint.  I can totally picture Ani just sitting back trying to remain drama free by offering mints to everyone.

Lucas, Kimmy and Sammy topped the list and were rewarded with solos this week, and the team was headed back to L.A. to Starbound to compete against more than 2x the amount of dancers as last week.  Sadly, despite dancing pretty well, neither Lucas or Sammy even placed, however Kimmy managed to finish 2nd overall!

The group number fell kind of flat, as it didn’t send the message the instructors were trying to put out there.  Sure, they finished 5th, but it was definitely a bit sloppy and probably could have taken 1st overall with some more work.  Victor and Angel were not too happy with the results, so expect some harder training next week.  Also, based on the results, I’m expecting Lucas and Sammy to fall a bit, likely allowing solos by Jessi and/or Hannah in the next episode.

Dance Moms: Miami – Hannah Epstein

dance moms miami Hannah EpsteinHannah Epstein

Age: 11
(Twitter) | (Facebook)
Mother: Debi Epstein (twitter)

Hannah Epstein is an 11 year old who grew up in New Jersey and started dancing at 2 1/2 years old.  Inspired by her older sister, Kayla, she’s been dancing ever since and ended up joining Stars Dance Studio where her dance took on a new level.

Her new teachers, Angel Armas and Victor Smalley not only lifted her dance, but taught her how to express herself as an artist through the dance.  This is where her passion grew to new levels, and also how she set herself up to be a future star as part of the Dance Moms: Miami cast.

Dance Moms Miami HannahHannah’s parents, Ian and Debi are very supportive of her, but also have a business outside of watching their daughter dance.  They own Scrub & Tan spray studio, which I might say is doing pretty well itself if facebook ‘likes’ are any indication.

Like the other mothers, it’s hard to really gauge a person through what little we know of her, so it’ll be interesting to see how her personality is.  With only a week to go until the Dance Moms: Miami premiere, we’ll be finding out soon enough.  Look for Hannah and Debi Epstein on April 3rd!

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