Kim Wilde: “I felt like the loneliest person alive”

The smell of fresh popcorn is in the air, people are advertising the ‘best hotdogs in the world’ and we are faced with a problem: a moment ago Kim Wilde wanted to do ‘just one round’ in the bumpercars, now she is hot on the heels of a fat kid for the third time. Most visitors on the German-American carnival were just a twinkle in the eye of their parents, when Kim Wilde sang about ‘Kids in America’ and delivered one of the Eighties classics. In 1981 she was 21 years young and went into the basement for a laugh. ‘I didn’t want to come across so seriously’, she says. ‘I was just shy an unsure. The dark look was a way of saving face.’

Thirty years later she can laugh about all this: ‘I wouldn’t have gone to a carnival back then – no way!’ Next stop: throwing cans. Kim sets up the pyramid and revels in memories. Since 1996 she is married with the british musical singer Hal Fowler. The pair lives with children Harry (12) and Rose (10) in a house in Hertfordshire. ‘Although I made good money with my first chart successes, I still lived with my parents. It didn’t matter to me what was happening on my bank account. The time of parties and boyfriends started only when I moved to London, at 24.’

Kim may be a professional youth, she has left behind the ‘Sturm und Drang’ period, without alcohol and drugs, but always ‘under electricity’: ‘I travelled a lot, made videos with handsome male models and meet extraordinary people.’ In 1988 Michael Jackson invited her personally to be his support act during the ‘Bad World Tour’. ‘For a long time I thought I was the loneliest person in the world. Only when I saw how isolated Michael Jackson lived, I revised my opinion’. Kim was never addicted to men like Madonna was. ‘I wanted to fall in love passionately and be loved equally so. To found a family with a wonderful man, that was always my biggest wish.’

She met Hal Fowler when she played in the musical Tommy in 1995 [sic]. I believe in coincidences. To meet Hal was a hint of fate. After our first date I knew: that is the father of my children, with him you may grow old.’ At the same time she left the music business. From the wild pop queen came the civil Kim Fowler: ‘I studied horticulture, presented gardening shows on the BBC and wrote books about my new passion.’

Because of Eighties revival shows five years ago her love for her old passion was re-awakened, which caused Kim to commute between spade and microphone for her new album ‘Come out and play’. ‘My voice sounds much better, aged, more forceful’, she says and laughs loud. ‘In turn I spend more time in front of the mirror with outrageously expensive creams.’ For preparation of the tour she has hired a personal trainer. ‘Botox doesn’t come into my face, I want to grow old gracefully.’

Two mothers are whispering in front of the big wheel. ‘Isn’t that…?’. Yes, it’s her. Kim Wilde is back. With cravings. For fans, for her tour. And right now: for a Berliner Weisse [beer] and the best hot dog in the world.