Hunting the Impossible Princess
A campaign to get a lifelong Kylie fan an audience with the pop princess has yielded life-changing results. Nicky Bryson will never forget the moment her brother met Kylie.
If you don’t already know my brother from previous columns, I’d like to introduce you to a very special man. When I say that Andrew Bryson is special, most people would think I am referring to the Down Syndrome that defines him to the outside world. But that is just a small part of what makes Andrew special.
From a very selfish perspective, it is Andrew’s hilarious sense of humour and extraordinary capacity to love that makes him so special to me… I’m the recipient of that all-encompassing love and I have to tell you, there have been some hard times in my life when Andrew’s love is the only thing that has kept my head above water.
Thank god there is so much of his love to go around because I do have to share it with another girl: the great and powerful Kylie Minogue. He has adored Miss Minogue since her humble days playing Charlene on Neighbours, and throughout the years he’s embraced every album, movie, DVD and concert she cared to release with great passion.
For Andrew, Kylie was a friend. She was someone who helped him through a childhood that was full of loss and uncertainty and she was still there to help him celebrate his journey into a very fulfilling adult life – notable for great friends, a good job and nights in his own place where he could play Kylie songs back-to-back without anyone telling him to “keep it down”.
Above: Kylie and Andrew
I didn’t become a Kylie fan until much later in life but once the love hit me, I didn’t waste any time catching up; taking Andrew to every concert, snapping up merchandise and doting on each new album as feverishly as my brother.
By Christmas last year, I realised that there wasn’t an item with Kylie’s face on it left to buy my brother. He had everything! So I commissioned an oil painting depicting him on the red carpet with Ms Minogue and he was so obsessed with it that I jokingly told friends the only thing I could do now was “produce the girl herself”.
Until a few weeks ago, that was just a crazy thought rattling around in my head. Then I had a very clear moment on the July 1 where I thought that maybe I could hunt down the Impossible Princess. I realised I did not want to spend the rest of my life wishing my brother could meet her, without knowing I had done everything in my power to try and make it so.
I created a Facebook page and campaigned like I was pushing a new world leader into power. I made collages, gorgeous updates, pressed any Kylie-adjacent friends in a shameless manner and watched the page grow. Everyone got into this thing in the most gorgeous way, whether just by liking and sharing the page or by pushing their contacts in a way that doesn’t usually happen in the entertainment industry.
With the help of a whole lot of generous folk (and one really well-placed angel who tipped the balance), on Day 11 a message came through from Kylie’s publicist that our campaign had been successful. Andrew was set to meet his idol just a few later at the rehearsals for The Voice.
Above: Kylie shares her meeting with Andrew with 2.8 million followers on Facebook.
I’m the one who screamed and laughed and wept. Andrew is a lot calmer than me. When I told him where we were going and whom we were going to meet, he didn’t really take it in at first. He was more impressed with the printout I had made of his red-carpet oil painting. Then halfway into the drive, he tapped me on the shoulder and asked me if he was going to talk to Kylie Minogue. When I replied that I was pretty sure he could even get away with kissing her, his face lit up with the most perfect, pure joy.
I was afraid that he would “freeze up” as he sometimes does when overwhelmed but I needn’t have worried! Once he had Kylie’s arm around him, he couldn’t have been more comfortable chatting away to everyone, showing off his pictures and his hipster Lego watch, and chilling out with his favourite person in the world.
That is a testament to how magnificent Team Kylie was and how easy they all made the experience for him. Kylie Minogue treated my brother like he was a dear old mate who had stopped by to hang out with her.
I could write all day and never describe the rapture Andrew now feels. In his mind the great Kylie Minogue is his friend. On the drive home, he sighed sweetly and said, “I miss Kylie”, which just melted my heart.
For my own part, everyone who helped with this campaign and the beautiful people who make up Team Kylie gave me a priceless gift: the opportunity to grant my brother’s greatest wish. He is everything to me and my world really turns with him in the centre. Andrew has given me so much that I thought I could never repay his gifts. However, it feels like I finally may have come very close.