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Hair Expo’s Masters of Hair Gala 2017

It was an all new initiative for Hair Expo – an evening where some of the most inspiring names in the business could each borrow time on stage for just 15 minutes to show an audience something a little special on a Saturday night. The Masters of Hair Gala delivered on all fronts – entertainment, education and inspiration, with poppets dancing to Michael Jackson, hair being cut to extremes on stage and some creative ideas that truly blurred the line between hair and art.

With audience seated, the event started with an instantly classic segment – Jayne Wild’s poppets (that’s female dancers with giant puppet heads) dancing to Single Ladies and Thriller in hilarious and unique fashion. Poppets of various ethnicities, fashion sense and hair types thoroughly entertained the audience with a routine you’re not likely to see created by anyone else. Hats off, Jayne.

A tough act to follow, but if anyone could do it, it was 2013, 2015 and 2016 Australian Hairdresser of the Year Frank Apostolopoulos, with the world’s best surprise assistant Eugene Souleiman. The duo showed off the very rare and incomparably edgy ‘By Frank’ aesthetic, cutting very long hair on stage and presenting final looks with embellishments, shaved panels and Frank’s signature detail.

American YouTube sensation Guy Tang next took to the stage, to bring his viral video education (he has over one and a half million YouTube subscribers) to life. Showing off four looks, two silver men’s hair looks, a rose gold woman’s look and a woman’s pink and purple unicorn colour, complete with before pictures that showed how extreme the change really was, Guy made some valid points about lighting in the salon and how our perspective of lighting truly affects in-salon colour – all communicated in only the most provocative way, of course.

Next up, 2016 (and shortly after, 2017) New Zealand Hairdresser of the Year Danny Pato took us all to the proverbial circus, with two clown-like looks centred around the use of multi-coloured pom poms. Danny’s braiding technique to incorporate the craft supplies was deceivingly complex, but the final look was nothing but fun and frivolous. We’re fans.

Next Sassoon legends Mark Hayes and Edward Darley presented their look, walking the audience through their inspiration behind the salon’s latest collection. The duo explained the urban, Bauhaus architectural basis for the looks and showed the collection in its entirety on screen, before completing a technical double-layered fringe cut on stage.

Last, but certainly not least, Sharon Blain provided the epic conclusion to the evening, creating regal and ornamental headpieces for an overall fairy-esque aesthetic. Using heat and raw talent to tweak and style every detail of the complex materials on stage, Sharon fused hair and art seamlessly together. Head to the Styleicons Facebook page to see the entire thing captured on live video by Big Review TV.

With 6 specialised and diverse segments, every facet of hair art was checked off the list. It just goes to show, the only thing inspirational hair needs to have in common is sheer talent.

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