It is not easy being a shy teenager in school. That is what Brett Nichols was — a shy teenager with no real formal dance experience. Because of this, one would think that putting on a show for his entire school would be the last thing he would ever want to do, however, that is not true.
Just 17-years-old at the time, a junior at Pitman High School, Nichols wanted to put on a special show for his friends after dancing for about nine years.
In an interview with Turlock Journal back in 2014, Nichols shared, “I just figured my friends, they work really hard and encourage me, and I figured this is more for them than it is for me.”
Nichols was not just about to do the choreography without going all the way. He also came decked out in Jackson’s iconic look — a hat, sleek black suit, and a single glove. Additionally, he had a microphone that he used to lipsync with as well as some backup dancers.
The shy boy certainly did not seem too shy when he started finding his rhythm. He effortlessly moved just like the original singer, and the crowd was cheering wildly.
They cheered the loudest though when Nichols whipped out the most signature move of them all: the moonwalk.
Here’s a little fun fact: the moonwalk was not actually invented by Jackson, although he did make it famous. It was actually being done in the 1970s by The Electric Boogaloos on Soul Train. Choreographer Jeffrey Daniel later taught the move to Jackson, who of course made it sleek and iconic in his own way.
During a live performance of “Billie Jean” is when he really helped popularize it. This was the moment that helped bridge West Coast and East Coast breakdancers together. It’s an event noteworthy in dance history, that most choreographers are familiar with.
Nichols pulled out this move a couple of times, sprinkling it throughout the performance, and he nailed it every time.
Even if you are not the biggest MJ fan, this is a pretty mesmerizing performance to watch. He moves so effortlessly, making it look so easy and natural to do when really, it is a huge feat. We guarantee you will stick around for the entire thing.
Footage of the performance was later shared to the high school’s Facebook page. It was found by alumnus Jaydeep Bhatia, who then shared it to Reddit. In an interview with Turlock City News, Bhatia shared, “I just knew it belonged on Reddit and the rest is history.”
After Reddit, MTV picked up the story and featured it on MTV News, who praised him, saying that he did Michael Jackson better than his own hologram at The Billboard Music Awards. No big deal for this shy teen.
One amazing opportunity on top of another just began to pile up, and after his MTV feature, MJ’s estate caught wind of the footage. After they saw it, they sent the teen two copies of MJ’s posthumous album and an invitation to the MJ Cirque de Soleil show in Las Vegas. Again, no big deal.
In the interview, Nichols added about the gift, “It’s really exciting that I’m being recognized by such an iconic family in American history.”
While this is an older story, it still resonates today. It is so incredible to watch an introverted teenager break out of his shell right before our very eyes. He showed us his amazing talents and of course he was rewarded for it and met with amazing praise and respect.
It is still continuing to be a hit on the internet — deservedly so! Let’s hope Nichols keeps dancing in the future.
Please SHARE this with your friends and family.
Follow your friends or be the first to join our group