After a few days of dropping hints on her social media accounts, Sia released a brand new single called “The Greatest,” a collaborative, motivational anthem with top rapper Kendrick Lamar. She also unveiled a corresponding music video, co-directed with Daniel Askill, in conjunction with the track, and it’s a bit more of a harrowing adaptation than the pop-heavy lyrics would imply.
The music video opens with the hashtag #weareyourchildren and is speculated to be a tribute to the Orlando shooting victims and survivors. Forty-nine people were killed in the attack earlier this summer, and 49 dancers are depicted in the video, clustered together in one room, seemingly neglected. Sia’s longtime collaborator/alter-ego and dancer Maddie Ziegler is the star of the video, sporting rainbow face paint as she performs stunning dance moves accompanied by her signature disturbing facial expressions, while leading and motivating her fellow child dancers to follow her as they weave their way through a dark, dilapidated, adult-less apartment.
Sia repeats the lines, “I’m free to be the greatest” and croons “Don’t give up, don’t give up” as the children scramble to dance their way out of dark surroundings, while Lamar raps, “Hey, I am the truth / Hey, I am the wisdom of the fallen/ Hey, I’m the youth/ I’m the greatest, this is the proof.”
You can stream the song here on Spotify: