Five Questions With Miss Kitty

Between her strong stage presence and the charisma with which she delivers to captivated audiences, it is difficult to imagine Miss Kitty as anyone other than the energetic character-playing host on some of Jamaica’s major entertainment platforms. Yet, Khadine ‘Miss Kitty’ Hylton knows there is a time for work and a time for play. In fact, she could be described as one of the more serious personalities one would find in a study group. When it came on to law school, she strategised and studied long and hard.

“It comes down to prioritising, time management and commitment, as well as making decisions that inure to your benefits; decisions that will build you and not break you,” said Miss Kitty.

You only need to speak to Miss Kitty once to see the morals she stands for. But to understand the blood, sweat and tears the media practitioner, radio-show host, motivational speaker, and attorney-at-law shed to maintain her position, may require several sessions. In recognising her story is something worth sharing, a mini-documentary has been created with the help of M1 Productions to show her journey up until the moment of being officially sworn into the law community, and thereafter licensed to practise.

“On that day, my tear ducts were overflowing … I was a mess and could not stop crying. I mean, if a person even said hello to me, I started to cry because of all the emotions,” explained Miss Kitty. “Any lawyer or even a law student can tell you because they go through similar, and I wanted to share this with everyone, so they could see even though being called to the Bar is just a snippet of the journey.”

In this week’s Five Questions With, Miss Kitty celebrates her birthday and tells us how she feels about sharing a piece of her through the 18-minute production dubbed – Calling Miss Kitty: From The Studio To The Bar – which premières tonight at 7:30 p.m., exclusively via the Digicel PlayGo app.

1. How do you feel about people actually seeing the journey of your being called to the Bar?

Well, I can only get called to the Bar once, and it is truly a monumental occasion, as it is the culmination of my six years of service, hard work and dedication to acquire a law degree and matriculating to the Norman Manley Law School. I would have been missing from off the social scene for a while during my studies, and this shows I was not idling, and for persons - family, fans and friends – who were unable to physically be there, this is me sharing with them. Often times we see our success through the eyes of men, so it is important to document a woman who, having full-time jobs, acts as a motivational speaker and still going to school was able to make it through. Also, people see the reward, the glory but don’t know the story, and now a window is opening for them to learn more and also see that no matter where you are in life, you can achieve your goal.

2. What would you say are some of the things you had to sacrifice or missed out on to attain your goals?

Just recently, I got emotional over this. Last year, I had an assignment to hand in on my birthday; for the most part, I have not celebrated a birthday, Easter, Christmas, not even a Valentine’s Day in a few years. I’m usually studying around this time because exams are in May. For Christmas, it was normal to have one or two assignments to do over the holiday, due as you return right after New Year’s, so there was time for partying or outings. Our study group had rigorous sessions from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. the next morning. I didn’t travel and simple things like watching TV series. Even though I do enjoy Suits, Blacklist and The Crown, there was so much to do, so I didn’t indulge. I had to say to myself, well, Shonda Rhimes and the actors are rich; I am trying to get myself to a particular level, and so instead of being marooned in front of the television, maybe I only watched a one movie. Sometimes yuh haffi tan pon crooked fi cut straight, to get things done.

3. Well, happy birthday! Now that you can celebrate, what are your plans?

In my mind, I would’ve liked to have a big Stone Love type of party and fly in people, but then the pandemic hit, so I had to pivot and adapt to new protocols. So, the documentary is part of the celebration, and I will be celebrating with persons who tune-in to my show on radio. I would also like persons to go and donate blood. I started my celebration earlier this week by donating to the National Blood Bank at Slipe Pen Road, and it is a nice birthday gift not just to me, but to our country. One bag of blood can save three lives, and I want us to be a nation that is proactive and not a reactive one.

4. In a normal world, where would you go for a dream birthday vacation?

Well, I would be in my two-piece and heels in Bora Bora or Maldives. Maybe on a 50-foot yacht sailing across the Amalfi Coast of southern Italy sipping on a Butterfly Moscato or some Dom Pérignon. Or I could have just gone to a Sandals in The Bahamas.

5. List three things you are thankful for:

One: My will power and I am reminded of something Ian Wilkinson, QC, said to me, which is “you have to have the will to win, and not just the wish to win”. A lot of people wish but not [willing to do] what it takes to self-actualise and work to attain the win. Two: Also, for the person I am, who I am - not perfect - but a person with morals and values. Three: I am grateful for a good family, friends and supporters who are the veritable pillars on which I stand; people that mean well and play a pivotal role in my life.

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