Girls graduate from Princess Academy with self confidence and great values
Body image and self worth can be a challenge for girls, and a Photoshopped princess ideal can be too high a bar for them to reach.
Creator, writer and performer Nicole "Nikki" Lever is trying to break through this superficiality with a new interactive, value-based musical show for young girls aged 3 to 8.
Princess Academy is a musical show that informs the next generation of young women that beauty and self-worth is what is in the inside, not the out.
"The moto is: You don't need a crown or a pretty dress. You were born a princess," Lever says.
Princess Academy is a 30-minute performance show, starring Lever as Princess Aria.
Princess Aria uses songs and dancing to teach participants values like basic manners, kindness, honesty, friendship, respect, courage, perseverance, self confidence and the most importantly that they are special and valued just as they are.
"I just want girls to love who they are in every way," she says. "Just, come as you are."
All show attendees are given a certificate, a tiara and a photo at the end of the performance, to show they have successfully graduated from the Princess Academy.
Lever hopes to perform monthly shows at various locations around Auckland. Especially at birthday parties, schools and the Starship Hospital.
"It's not just about looking 'pretty', but is about being a good person and learning vital life lessons and values."
The Torbay resident is originally from Orange County, California, but moved to New Zealand when she was 12.
Despite being a singer-songwriter her whole life, it wasn't until Lever became a mother that she was inspired to create Princess Academy.
"Being a mother switched that passion on," she says.
"I hope that young women will see their value and worth and grow up knowing that they are special and unique."
Princess Academy is hosting a public launch February 4, from 11am till noon at Windsor Park Baptist Church, Kauri Room, 550 East Coast Rd, Mairangi Bay.
Visit princessacademy.co.nz to book tickets, party packages, show times, music and more.
The show's accompanying album is available on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play and Deezer.