SMALL CAT TRAUMA
It is a truth universally acknowledged that, at the turn of the last century, the absolute least fun that it was possible to have anywhere in the world - including warzones, areas of devastation and Dorking - was if you were somehow unfortunate enough to be involved in a photoshoot with the group, Atomic Kitten.
My Kitten PR colleague and I were regularly in the unusual position of receiving a call from a teen pop magazine editor enquiring about doing a cover shoot with the Kittens; unusual because we would then spend the next two hours trying to figure out ways of persuading the editor to do a cover shoot with someone else.
It wasn’t that the Kittens were not nice people. Far from it. Generally they were lovely. The problem was that between the three young ladies there would inevitably be one, sometimes two, occasionally all three of them going through some form of major relationship catastrophe (sorry!) which would spill over into the photo shoot resulting in regular tears and disappearances.
On one occasion, a cover shoot was arranged, make-up and hair people employed, sets built etc. and on the day, at the allotted time, only two Kittens were in position, the other having had a boyf bust-up which had rendered them unable to leave the house. Of the two remaining Kittens, one had to take a phone call within minutes of arriving, burst into tears and was never seen again.
On the rare occasions that we did get everyone together and smiling, the cover shoots were a big success and, in one instance, helped to salvage a difficult situation. Arriving at a small airport in Germany, one Kitten had managed to mislay her passport.
With only minutes before the flight was due to take off, there was no possibility of returning to the hotel for a search. Luckily, we had a copy of Smash Hits with the girls on the cover. Also luckily, the airport was a small one, staffed by German officials who - unusually for Germany - had clearly missed various lessons in Teutonic officialdom. We hopefully waved the copy of Smash Hits in lieu of a passport and they let us through…..