High School Formal

Nikki Webster
Performer and recording artist
McDonald College of Performing Arts, Sydney – Class of 2004

What do you remember of your high school formal?
The most memorable part of the night was everyone in my year arriving in their beautiful gowns and the love and happiness that were spread throughout the room.

What is your favourite memory from the night?
My favourite memory of the night was actually graduating. I never thought I could do it! Also being able to share such a wonderful night with family and friends.

Did you take a date, go with friends or go alone?
I took a great school friend, as I knew he would feel comfortable and I wouldn’t have to baby-sit all night. We still keep in contact.

If you did go to your formal with a date, were guys intimidated to ask you out given your celebrity status?
I don’t think so as I have grown up with most of the guys and I had been attending school five days a week with them, so they didn’t treat me any different.

Looking back at your high school formal photo do you laugh, smile, reminisce in fond memories, cringe, or wish you could punch your hairdresser?
When I look back I laugh. I look so young. But I also reminisce on what a great year at school I had.

What was the food like?
The food was beautiful, from what I can remember. There was so much food!

Did you dance or avoid the floor?
I danced all night long. They couldn’t get us off the dance floor – it was so much fun. We were having dance offs and everything.

Did the DJ play any of your music on the night and if so, what was that experience like?
No, which I’m so glad about, I would have run out otherwise (laughs) … we didn’t have a DJ – we had an awesome live band.

If awards, either serious or light-hearted, were presented to attendees on the night, did you receive any? If so, what was it for?
I can’t remember. I remember the year 11 doing little plays about us all and then presenting us with awards, but I can’t remember what I got.

What was the stand out fashion craze at the time of your formal?
At our school formal everyone had to wear white, so people’s individual styles really shone through. It was fantastic.

Given a lot of your youth was spent in the public spotlight, how important was it for you to spend time amongst your fellow students at your school formal?
It was really important for me to be there. I had a performance in the day and then another one the next morning but I made sure I could attend my formal as I missed my year 10 formal and my whole year got really upset. So it was a very important and memorable night for me.

Are you still friends with any of your high school friends?
Yes, I’m still friends with all of my closest friends that I grew up with at school. It is really hard keeping in contact as everyone is travelling and attending uni but we all knew that we’re here for each other and that is all the comfort we need.

Looking back at your career goals when you were still at school, did you end up where you wanted to be… and for better or worse?
I ended up 100 times better than I could have ever imagined. I never thought I would complete my dream to make an album at the age of 13. I’m so lucky and I still can’t believe it.

What’s the most interesting aspect of your current job?
I love how every day is different, every performance is different, and I just love getting out to the public and performing live.

What advice do you have for students attending their high school formal in the future?
Have fun and don’t stress about what to wear – you’ll look beautiful. Enjoy the night as it is your night and you deserve it. And remember how tough life gets after school.

Source: High School Formal
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