The fashion industry has its perks but all that glitters is not gold. Modelling requires just as much hard work as any other job. Recently a 14-year-old model worked herself to death. Reports say that the Russian girl got exhausted after a 13-hour long fashion show in Shanghai. Vlada Dzyuba collapsed due to sheer overload of work into a coma. The young lady was taken to the Shanghai hospital on Tuesday but didn’t wake up to see the next day. She passed away on Friday due to multiple organ failures.
According to Yahoo, Vlada was suffering from chronic meningitis, suggesting that her condition would have further worsened due to exhaustion. Reports say that the teen was, by law, permitted to work only three hours a week but worked a lot more hours than that as she was bound by a contract. Her death is a cause of concern about the work situations of underage models in an industry that is filled to the brim with cut-throat competition.
Oksana Dzyuba, the model’s mother had this to say to Siberian Times, “She was calling me, saying ‘Mama, I am so tired. I so much want to sleep.’” She further told that “It must have been the very beginning of the illness. And then her temperature shot up.” The mother insisted her daughter to visit the doctor but Vlada was too afraid to do so because she did not have proper medical insurance.
The police are still investigating this matter but nothing substantial has been found out. The accounts of China and Russia contradict one another. “We feel sorry that we lost an angel,” ESEE Model Management in Shanghai said.
Zheng Yi, ESEE’s chief executive, told Global Times, “Dzyuba had 16 different jobs during her two-month stay in China, she had regular breaks while working,” he further clarified that “Most of her work was completed within eight hours. Her workload was moderate compared with other models.” The agency confirmed that the girl had been enjoying her time in Shanghai and also admitted that her work hours had no limit set, according to The Sun.
Zhang said, “We wish that she can have no pain in heaven.” He also said, “Our whole agency is in a very sad situation, Vlada was such a lovely girl and we worked with her for two years.” and that “We want to tell everybody the truth, what we are thinking and what has happened, especially the Russian people, they lost one of their beautiful daughters.”
The teen died less than two weeks prior to her 15th birthday. Her mother flew to China and when asked if she blamed anyone for what had happened, she said, “No, and that’s all I can say now. Sorry, it is hard for me to speak.” Oksana also took to social media and posted “Children are the most valuable in a mother’s life. Nothing and nobody will be able to replace loss of one of them. I will never be able to accept and to believe that my Vlada is not with us. I love you lots, my girl.”
Zhang Yi expressed his grief over the incident and added: “Modelling work is not manual labor, after all, just shows and photo shoots and making poses, and there are breaks.” He also said, “We provide underage models with more care.” And that, “If they feel stressed, we will communicate with them.” Investigation is being conducted to know more about her tragic death and also to know about how much she earned per day.