Dance Moms hits a new low: Girls as young as EIGHT wear nude bikinis and dance burlesque routines in front of their mothers
Lifetime's Dance Moms has hit new lows by asking its child contestants - the youngest of whom is just eight-years-old - to dress in nude bikinis and perform a burlesque routine on stage.
The raunchy dance moves are usually the domain of striptease experts, the X-rated acts brimming with nudity, nipple tassels and sexually explicit poses.
But a clip from this week's show sees dance teacher Abby Lee Miller dressing the children in tan bikinis to give the audience the impression of full nudity, before asking them to act as if a man 'cant' afford' them.
Upon announcing the suggestive routine - 'the audience should think that you are nude', reveals Ms Miler - the show's infamously competitive moms and their daughters are clearly shocked, as shown in the preview at Jezebel.
A wide-eyed eight-year-old Mackenzie tells the camera: 'I don't want to be naked on stage.'
Blonde-haired mother Christi is unequivocal: 'No-one ever wants to hear the word nude associated with their ten-year-old. Ever.'
The unease is palpable - a parent is heard loudly commenting: 'So much for being conservative'.
Christi's eyebrows adopt a default position halfway up her forehead. 'Those are crazy looking' she says, under her breath, as she watches the girls trying on their revealing ensembles.
Ms Miller, who has never been a professional dancer but has been teaching choreography since she was just 14, talks her young charges though the famously tittivating routine, instructing them to 'hide' behind then 'look' from the modesty of their hot pink fans.
It's not just the routine that is inappropriate. Even the girls see that their skimpy outfits are uncomfortably revealing.
'How's this going to fit me?' says Mackenzie. 'I can fit this on my American doll.'
The fierce dance madam apparently sees no insensitivity on the misguided outfit choice, explaining that 'you give the allusion that you're nude underneath the fans... we all know you're wearing tan bras and tan pants.' The fans, she says, are for covering the body.
'Everyone in in the industry knows the girls are completely covered and everything is harmless... These mothers need to stop questioning me. What I do works.'
Yet, despite the initial shock reactions and obvious anxiety caused by the inappropriate idea, the mothers do not successfully intervene.
The warning signs that Dance Moms may be a touch on the risque side were only too evident, when, in a recent slot on Anderson Cooper's daytime show, a group of Toddlers and Tiara's mothers said that the Dance Moms parents were 'worse' then they.
'They are worse than us, they make us look really good' said that programme's contestant mother June, while another, Kayla, who famously encouraged her daughter to diet and lose 10 pounds, said of the Dance Moms: 'I think they are mean, they seem mean-hearted.'