A postcard they handed out at the event
Stop the press! Kylie finally did some Australian promo today - albeit not for her album or tour. Instead, the tiny diva rocked Pitt St Mall with a short but sweet in-store appearance at Myer to flog her latest perfume. "Sexy Darling" might smell like Dannii's piss (after she's eaten asparagus) but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to be in the same room as a living, breathing Minogue. I'm really glad I made the effort because the event turned out to be a lot of fun. Kylie was her usual lovely self and looked absolutely stunning (if a little thin). There was also no shortage of trashtastic entertainment to keep the crowd amused - from the wonderfully awful Showgirl Dancers to trivia competitions, desperate gays and singing children. It really did encapsulate the weird and wonderful world of Kylie fandom.
The Showgirl Dancers!
The first 100 fans to arrive got the opportunity to meet Kylie, so I tried to get there as early as I could. I turned up four hours before Kylie was scheduled to appear but some people had spent the night queuing outside the store (!) so I missed out. Fair play. It was a bit of a bummer but I enjoyed catching up with all the old school Kylie fanatics and it gave me the chance to have a wander around. The entire store was in full Kylie mode and "X" was blasting from every speaker on every level. I can't think of a better way to shop but some of the elderly clientele looked more than a little bemused by "Nu-Di-Ty"!
By the time I returned to level 4, the pre-Kylie entertainment was in full swing. The craptastic Showgirl Dancers worked their way through "Ultimate Kylie", while Bianca Dye took on hosting duties. I think Bianca is the best thing about Australian radio and she was in top form today; taking the piss out of the crowd ("Fluro yellow is always a brave choice"), the police ("Are you here to protect Kylie or just to perv?") and herself ("Kissed by a gay man... story of my life"). She also gave away concert tickets, showbags and what seemed like several hundred copies of the "X" tour edition. I don't know why I was surprised. There must be thousands of unsold copies littering the offices of Warner Australia if its chart placing (or lack thereof) is any indication.
Richard inhales a whiff of "Sexy Darling"
Things took a turn for the worse when Bianca called for volunteers to sing a Kylie tune. 12 year Alannah took to the stage and stunned everyone by actually knowing the words to "White Diamond". The little girl was adorable but the frenzied response was utterly ridiculous. She came back for an encore (and butchered "Cosmic"), was hounded by journalists for an interview, given the opportunity to be the first person to meet Kylie (ahead of the people who actually slept on the street for the honour) and was even invited to go backstage at Sunday's concert. It was all a bit cringe-worthy.
Thankfully, Kylie arrived before the Alannah show totally did my head in. It was kind of surreal to see her walk through Miss Shop in a designer gown on her way to the stage. I'm guessing it's been a long time since Kylie last wore a $10 t-shirt! This is the best I've seen Dannii's much older sister look in ages - great hair, hot dress and killer heels. I was just a bit shocked by how much weight she's lost since I saw her in London. I think those evil Colombians stole the suitcases with Kylie's food. South Americans!
Kylie was then joined on stage for a quick interview with Richard Wilkins - surely the biggest waste of space in the entertainment industry. He asked a couple of inane questions about the tour and her perfume empire and Kylie gave her standard banal responses about being "overwhelmed" and "just so happy to be here". Yawn. The highlight for me was when a raucous fan demanded that Richard "get the fuck out of the way" so he could take some photos. I couldn't have said it better myself.
Yes, I know the tour edition is shit
The time came for Kylie to sign autographs and that devil child managed to steal the show again. Little Alannah burst into tears and Kylie dutifully comforted her before suggesting they sing a duet version of "White Diamond". I doubt Walt Disney could dream up anything this schmaltzy. It was great to hear Kylie sing live (even if it was mostly ruined by Alannah singing over the top of her) but I could have done without the Hallmark moment. Not surprisingly, the impromptu duet has already been all over the news (my favourite headline - "Kylie Makes 12 Year Old Girl Cry") and the internet. You can watch a report about it below. Warning: A sick bag may be necessary.
The highlight of the whole day was watching Kylie sign autographs. I know that sounds incredibly boring but I love the way she interacts with fans. I've been to so many signings where the artist in question hasn't even been bothered to look up but Kylie took the time to chat with everyone, gave people hugs and kisses and seemed grateful when someone gave her a present (ranging from flowers and chocolates to a designer dress!) And she's been like that for as long as I can remember. Kylie is genuinely nice. Just one of the reasons why so many of us are still in love with her after all these years. Bring on Sunday night!
My bottle of Kylie water!