San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick isn’t the only Pitman High School graduate to be watched by millions.
Now Brett Nichols, the Pitman High junior with a moonwalk to make Micheal Jackson jealous, has been thrust into instant stardom.
Nichols performed his dance to Jackson’s “Billy Jean” in front of just a few hundred spectators at Pitman High School’s annual Talent Rally. But thanks to the power of the internet, Nichols is now a household name.
The video of Nichols’ performance has had more than 4.6 million views in just one day, and it’s still climbing fast. Nichols’ dance is the No. 1 most watched video on YouTube in the past 24 hours. And it’s now the No. 1 trend on Facebook.
Not bad for a video made by students of Pitman’s Video Arts class, using second-hand video cameras, a jerry-rigged steadicam made from PVC pipe and duct tape, and a 2006 iMac with a copy of iMovie. The talent show highlight video was originally intended for the school’s daily announcement program.
But then Pitman High School graduate and musician Jaydeep Bhatia shared the video on reddit, the social networking and news website, and the performance quickly went viral.
The Stanislaus County Fair has now jumped onto the bandwagon, publicly asking Nichols to perform at the fair this year.
National news agencies have latched on to Nichols’ performance as well. Even NBC’s Today show highlighted his performance this morning.
“We’ve got to get that kid in here,” Today anchor Savannah Guthrie said. “We’ve got to see that.”
Today anchor Matt Lauer said Nichols should perform on the NBC show “America’s Got Talent.”
TurlockCityNews.com’s previous article on the phenomenon, the first to reveal Nichols’ name and the story of how the video went viral, has since been cited by Parade magazine and newspapers from Australia, Indiana, and Peru. Even the New York Post used a quote from TurlockCityNews.com’s prior article, though without attribution.
The official Michael Jackson Twitter account honored both Nichols and Pitman tweeting, “CONGRATULATIONS TO BRETT NICHOLS FROM @PITMANPRIDE ON HIS MOONWALK TO THE TALENT SHOW WIN!”
And yes, even Kaepernick has heard about Nichols’ dance. Kap tweeted out a “#salute” in honor of Nichols.
People around the world aren’t just wowed by Nichols’ performance. They’re also wowed by Pitman High School, if one highly-rated YouTube comment is to be believed.
“Let’s take a moment to value this high school!” a user named GeekzzTalk posted. ”If this happened at my high school and that kid danced to MJ, he would have been the laughing stock all year. He did great and the whole school cheered for him. Wish more high schools were like this :P”