The Credible Likeable Superstar Role Model
project comprised of 4 main parts:
The Catherine Bennett Fame Experiment
A Theatre show
An Education Project for Tweens
A Documentary Project
Catherine Bennett was a fictional pop star invented by Kimmings’ 9 year old niece Taylor in 2012. Taylor’s brief was to create an alternative feminist popstar for tweens that Kimmings would then become for the duration of the 6 month experiment. The duo decided that if they could get 'CB' famous, then it would prove there was demand for a new, non-sexualised and creative version of pop music.
Taylor dictated the fame aims that Kimmings - along with a team of pop experts - were to pursue. The overall aim was to make a positive difference to the self esteem of young girls. The fame aims included being on the front cover of Girl Talk magazine, a million YouTube hits and being interviewed by Ellen Degeneres. Due to popular demand, CB ended up living for over a year! She released 3 singles on Youtube (see below), made 8 songs, had her own website and fan club, and did gigs in many schools. She also played Latitude, The Southbank Centre’s Festival of Neighbourhood and a special gig at the Manchester Museum.
CB reached over 5,000 children live.
Her music reached a further 100,000 online.
According to the PR company Dawbell, 32 million readers accessed the story of Catherine Bennett, Bryony and Taylor across the world. The theatre show tour ran for 79 dates and reached over 12,000 people. It also spurred a spin-off show for children, That Catherine Bennett Show.
The project was featured in every broadsheet in the UK. Kimmings and Taylor were interviewed on The Wright Stuff, Woman’s Hour, Sky News, The BBC World Service, BBC Radio 1, The Verb on BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio Scotland, Every BBC Regional Station and Triple J in Melbourne. They also did a speech at Yoko Ono’s Meltdown Festival and delivered the keynote speech at the 2013 Children’s Media Conference.
Catherine Bennett played the main stage at Camp Bestival in August 2014 in a climactic finale, and the duo created a kids show about feminism and pop music. The feature documentary (to be released in 2015) is currently in post-production, and follows Bryony and Taylor throughout their journey. It is funded by the wonderful support of people on Kickstarter.
"I heartily approve!"
"Catherine Bennett is pretty damn fun!"
"My new earworm"
THE TEAM THAT CREATED CB
Inventor and Manager: Taylor Houchen
Catherine Bennett: Bryony Kimmings
Hair: Sami Knight
Make-up: Liz Martins
Styling: Aaron Francis Walker
Photography: Christa Holka
Graphic Design: Alexander Innes
PR Company: Dawbell PR
Producer: Bryony Kimmings
Music: Bryony Kimmings and Tom Parkinson
Music Videos: Robert Holtby, Umut Gunduz and Albino Mosquito
Education Manager: Ihsan Pickstock
Project Administrator: Rachel Porter
Social Media Assistant: Jack Thomason
Project Managers: Bryony Kimmings and Mimi Poskitt
The Catherine Bennett Project
A video by Rebecca Brand