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Atomic Kitten left fans purring

PUBLISHED: 16:00 12 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:32 03 March 2010

IT was the night they had been waiting for – Atomic Kitten were in town.

The anticipation had been building for months and as hundreds of pop lovers piled into the Regent to fill every seat the excitement was electric.

IT was the night they had been waiting for – Atomic Kitten were in town.

The anticipation had been building for months and as hundreds of pop lovers piled into the Regent to fill every seat the excitement was electric.

Adorned in anything that glittered, flashed or glowed youngsters ran around persuading parents to buy the merchandise being sold by hawkers on the steps to the theatre.

A few groups of twenty-something males stood out like sore thumbs from the predominantly teenage audience (and their mums and dads) and one could suspect they were there to enjoy more than just the Kittens' vocal performance.

All sat patiently but noisily waiting for the star act, treated in the mean time to a very lukewarm-up by Canadian singer Kiara Hunter. She mimed four tracks that were forgotten the minute they ended and danced energetically, but judging by the audience reaction it was her two dancers who stole the glory of the support slot with a funky breakdancing display.

What followed Kiara's forgettable performance was an agonisingly long wait for the headlining trio.

An attempt by some at a slow hand clap to encourage Natasha (whose four-month bump was clearly visible), Liz and Jenny on stage as soon as possible turned into a rhythmic clap along to the pop tunes blaring out of the speakers.

The fans seemed happy to patiently wait that little bit longer though – they'd been building up to this for months so a few more minutes didn't matter.

When the moment eventually came for the pop threesome to make their appearance they were greeted by a deafening wall of noise. Whistles, screams, shouts and frantic clapping erupted as the sound of Tom Jones singing What's New Pussycat played out into the auditorium.

And then they emerged to begin a live performance that would last well over an hour, include four costume changes and prove to their doubters that they may not always be the best singers in the world but they're darn good at what they do and can conjure up some mean harmonies.

From the minute the opening chords of the title track from their debut album Right Now kicked in it was clear that the girls were ready to enjoy every single bit of their first headlining UK tour.

Bounding around stage with endless enthusiasm and joking with each other they were loving every minute of it.

And as the audience jumped, danced and waved – seeking a return wave they could call their own from one of the girls– they too were guaranteeing this was going to be a night to talk about in school in the morning.

With the backing of a live band, the Kittens showcased the hits that have turned them into the UK's biggest girl band and treated their fans to a sneak preview of some of the tracks from the forthcoming album. There were also a few covers (Kids in America and Dancing in the Streets to name two) that would have had the older audience members at least tapping their feet if not singing along.

There was also the energetic effort of those at the front of the crowd to get their face on camera as the Kittens took to the stage with a camcorder to record the final numbers of the show for a forthcoming video, or so they said.

The youngsters in the crowd were no doubt exhausted by the end of the night's show but as the encore came to an end – with one lucky fan getting to join Jenny in the spoken verse of Whole Again – it was clear they'd have stayed much longer if they could.

The show had been all they had wanted and more – simply purrfect!


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