As kids all over America head back to school, Broadway.com decided to ask our favorite Broadway stars to look back at their own years in the classroom—and share a school picture! Kara Lindsay, who is making her Broadway debut as feisty female reporter Katherine Plumber in Newsies, recalls the problem with history class, the song that got her through high school and some truly embarrassing moments.
Who was your favorite teacher and why?
My third grade teacher, Miss Secker. She played piano and would make up a song for the class that we'd learn and sing together. One of them was called the "Oreo song" and I still remember every lyric. :) Miss Secker was loving, kind and made us want to learn. She used to be a model so she was gorgeous, too! She inspired us to be the best we can be and that anything is possible if you believe. She was basically the most perfect human being I had ever encountered. Now I have that "Oreo song" in my head!
What advice would you give to your school-age self?
"That test tomorrow will not decide whether you live or die, so chill out!" and "Don't be afraid of the 'cool clique.' Their bratty attitudes and exclusivity will bite them in the butt one day. Keep your head held high."
What song sums up your school experience and why?
I used to listen to "Perfect Day" by Hoku every single day in high school! "On this perfect day, nothin' standin' in my way...Don't you try to rain on my perfect day." It pumped me up when I was feeling down or defeated, whether it was from the cool kids making me feel left out or feeling overwhelmed with homework and mean teachers. To this day when I hear the song it makes me think of my crappy '92 Ford Tempo and driving to school at 7AM. Good times!
What’s your favorite back to school item?
I loved those 5 Star three-subject spiral bound notebooks that had folders in them! It compacted three classes into one notebook...genius! Anything to take the load off when going through the halls to the next class. I was generally the one carrying far too many binders, trapper keepers, and pencil pouches. I refused to use my backpack for some reason.
What class did you dread and why?
History! There wasn't an equation you could solve that would give you an answer. It was all informational, and it just bored me to death. I can remember trying to figure out a way to fall asleep with my eyes open so the teacher wouldn't notice. Never quite figured it out. I loved math and science. It just made sense to me. But my hatred for world history has come to bite me in the butt in my adult years. Every show I have done professionally has required me to study the world in which my characters lived. Now I wish I could go back and retake those tests! Just goes to show that you never know when you'll need all those tools. I wish someone had warned me!
What is your most embarrassing school moment?
Too many. In fourth grade, a mean girl pulled my pants down during gym class in front of all the boys playing football. Another moment of "kill me please" was in high school. This may be TMI, just warning ya. I used to perspire like crazy and would put paper towels under my armpits so that I wouldn't have embarrassing sweat stains on my cute shirts. Well, usually I'd only leave them there for a couple minutes until I wasn't sweaty anymore. I would remove them discreetly. One day, I was walking to the front of the classroom to give a presentation, and out falls my sweaty armpit paper towels. Enough said.
In which extracurricular activities did you participate?
I was involved with lots of after school activities! Soccer, competition dance (not quite like Abby Lee Miller), basketball, show choir, and playing with my dog:)
Describe your school-age self in three words.
Shy, sweet, awkward.