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Nicki Webster sheds light on dramas at the opening ceremony



During rehearsals during the week preceding the opening ceremony at Sydney 2000, Nikki Webster, at the age of 13, did not know whether he could fly through the Australian stadium or not.

Now, 32-year-old Webster was elected after months of auditions to play a major role in the opening ceremony, which will bring her a household name all over the world.

However, things were a little tense on the day leading up to the show.

"The only thing I was nervous about was that I could fly because it was a big part of it," she said.

"I think in two of the general rehearsals a week ago it was so windy that we could not fly.

"Not that I did not want to, but I was not allowed.

"Then, on the day I remember the wind resuming in the afternoon, I thought it would not happen, but fortunately I did.

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For five minutes Webster was hooked on a harness as he flew through Australia's stadium into his pink dress before landing and later singing Under the southern sky,

It is part of a magical opening ceremony, which is still considered one of the best in Olympic history.

The Sydney Olympics will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Games next year, and although there were amazing sports performances, the event certainly began with the opening ceremony.

It was time for the Australian entertainment and creative industry to have its own moment.

It was a night when Australia showed the world what we can do, and part of it was through Nicky Webster's eyes.

Webster also had a unique look at an event at night that could change the way the world views the night historically.

There is no doubt that many of us can remember the moment when the fiery ring that Kathy Freeman lighted stopped on his way up to the boiler on the top of the Olympic stadium.

Millions of Australians watched agonizing silence when the Olympic boiler in Sydney stopped at the head of Freeman.

Webster says he knows exactly what is happening when the Olympic flame boiler is bugged and Freeman stays there while the world is waiting for her to start the Olympic fire.

The nervous tension of the organizers of the opening ceremony was tangible.

"I was in my ear, so I was wondering what was going on with the boiler, but I think Cathy and the team and the way they do it themselves was unbelievable," she said.

"She was so restrained, and whatever happened mechanically, they fixed it."

Night will never forget.

"It was pretty cool," she said.

"When you make music performances at eight shows a week for eight months, you live and breathe and you experience so many emotions. But it was one night, I had to do it with one performance.

– It worked out so well, and then it was over.

Returning several months before the Sydney Olympics, Webster revealed that this was an operation in which the secretary was the most secret.

Throughout her life she was a child of a performer performing Morning, Australia with Burt Newton, as well as in musicals such as Cinderella which drew the attention of the Olympic organizers.

"It was very, very difficult, about six months of auditions," Webster said in order to get the role.

"I do not think people realize how intense it is.

"I said only a few weeks before the opening ceremony that I had the concert and I'm sure they had their reasons because they wanted to keep it very organic.

"But at that time it was very stressful, I thought," will I get this role or not? "

"I had to sign the privacy forms at that time."

This was a very long process as the organizers wanted to make sure they had the right girl for the lead role in the opening ceremony.

Perhaps the organizers did not let her know if she was given the role because of the extraordinary secrecy surrounding the opening ceremony.

"So from the first audition we did not hear a few months and then it was just a process of elimination," Webster said.

Over the past few months, even though she did not know whether or not she had the role, Webster continued to rehearse with an amazing secret.

"The role continues to develop," she said.

"I think initially from my understanding that she would just fall asleep and dream, and the rest of the opening ceremony would be her dream.

"However, they wanted it in every segment.

"So it was a great job to work with everyone and work out how that will happen."

The organizers got 100% right, choosing Webster. Confident about her age and natural media understanding, she was the perfect choice.

The day after the opening ceremony was an absolute chaos for Webster and her parents, Tina and Mark.

Before the social media even existed, the opening ceremony became viral.

"We wanted media from all over the world," she said.

"Every single room in my house had another newsgroup the next day.

"My mom and dad were trying to make pancakes for everyone. It was just fun, we met people from all over the world. All this is part of the learning experience. "

Suddenly Webster was not Sydney's high school, and things would soon change forever.

Soon after the opening ceremony she signed with a powerful recording company BMG, which later became Sony BMG.

In June 2001, after the Olympic Games in September 2000, her singles The yawn kisses was released and eventually went to No. 2 in the Australian charts of the ARIA singles.

"My life just changed," she said.

"All the dreams I planned to do after graduating from school, such as recording music, making clothes, clothing, came true when I was 13 years old.

"There was no book on how to deal with it. There was no indication how to deal with the manual, how to do it, and what we should do.

"We were learning together as a family. It was an interesting experience.

Because of its profile, Webster is offering opportunities abroad, but is pleased to have stayed in Australia.

"There were many offers right after the Olympics to pack and move to America, and maybe I would have a different career if I did, who knows?" She said.

"But as a family we wanted to stay in Australia, my brother was young and we were grown up. So we stayed.

Webster finished with three albums in Australia, the last one To dance in 2004

The lead singer of this album is also called To dance, written jointly by Delta Goodrem and the former Australian idol Judge Mark Holden.

Although all of her albums were released before she graduated from high school, Webster has no regrets about her career going.

Just like she was when she was 13 years old when the world knows her, she is incredibly positive to this day.

"I am always so positive about everything that has happened," she said.

– The people I met, the things I have to do. This is absolutely amazing. "

Now married to Matthew McMah, the couple have two children, Skyla, 5 and Malachi, 1.

She runs three dance schools in New South Wales and that's her passion.

Webster has shown little clips to Skylah about her presentation at the opening ceremony, and she is eager to show her full.

"I think she's ready to watch all this," she said.

"Understanding the culture of Australia, deep dreaming and how the whole thing is presented."

Webster also looks back at the Sydney Olympics with a sense of innocence; then the world was such a different place.

"Before September 11," she said.

"Fortunately, we did not have any additional security concerns. I'm glad as a child that I did not have such extra care.

Nobody thought about it. Everything was about bringing everyone together and putting Australia on the map.

It will always have a special place in Australian history, this night on September 15, 2000, when the eyes of the world were on Sydney, Australia.

Continue the conversation with Luc Dennehi via Twitter @LukeDennehy


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