FAME Team’s Trip of a Lifetime to Australia
Th Fellowship for British Hairdressing’s FAME team recently presented at the Hair Expo show in Australia, flying the flag for British hairdressing and enjoying once-in-a-lifetime opportunities and experiences. Members Jordanna Cobella, James Earnshaw, Gavin McIntyre and Ria Kulik flew more than 10,000 miles to present at the annual event, take part in an exclusive BaByliss PRO campaign shoot with award-winning photographer David Mannah with as well as meet their hair heroes and work backstage at shows.
They kept a diary of their journey for HJi.
From Gatwick to Sydney, all stocked up with sweets and treats for our not-so-short flight! We were met at the airport by our mentor Nick Irwin and the Fellowship’s vice chairman Andreas Stavrou, who whisked us off into a blacked-out van to the amazing Ovolo Hotel where we were staying – a fantastic space that got our creative senses going immediately, despite the 22-hour journey!
We got straight into it the next morning with a model casting for the BaByliss Pro UK campaign and our Hair Expo and GenNext stage shows. The amazing David Mannah came along to help us out – and it’s a good job as we had over 50 models arrive who were all incredible! In the evening, we went to dinner at Café Sydney with Jayne Wild and Gary Latham from Wildlife Salons. We enjoyed stunning views of Sydney harbour bridge and Darling Harbour port whilst quizzing Jayne about her renowned Poppets!
Let the prep begin! Wella Studios and Prema Hair Salon in Surry Hills kindly offered up their spaces for us to use, as well as colour and product to help us get our hair pieces and wigs ready for our shows. After a busy day working, we headed to the Wildlife ‘Sogo’ salon to meet the team, take a look around and best of all, meet the Poppets! We couldn’t resist trying them on and dancing around a little…
After a full day of prep at Wella Studios, we headed to a private party at Madam Tussauds hosted by the Australian Hair Council. Here we got to meet the Australian FAME team! This was a big moment for us and one we’d been looking forward to. They were amazing people who live and breathe hairdressing – so similar to us in mindset and personality!
It was the first day of our Hair Expo shows. It was straight into prep after breakfast, creating an organised mess of BaByliss PRO tools and Wella and Bumble & Bumble products, kindly donated to us to use. Our first show was a huge success and we couldn’t wait to return and do it again the next day. The fun didn’t end there, as our evening was spent at the Masters of Hair Gala, watching Mark Hayes, Guy Tang and many more. It was great to relax and immerse ourselves in other people’s work for a while.
It was an 8am wake-up call for breakfast and planning our strategy for the day ahead. After another fantastic Hair Expo show in the morning, we took a look around the exhibition stands and had a peek at the other stages and Andreas surprised us with a lovely gift – YS Park dressing brushes signed by Mr YS. Park himself. The rest of the day was spent prepping and choreographing for our GenNext show. We had a blast on stage and had the best reaction we could have hoped for and we celebrated all evening at the Prema Hair Salon afterparty.
It was our last Hair Expo show which was bitter sweet as we absolutely loved getting up on stage together to show the crowds what we’re made of. We’re so thankful to Hair Expo for having us perform not once, but three times. In the evening, we headed to the Schwarzkopf Professional Hair Expo Gala Awards show, all suited, booted and glammed up. We’d already seen the roll of honour at the exhibition and were so impressed with the level of hair across the board, showing us exactly why the UK are sourcing inspiration from Australia now, just as much as they are from us.
It was time to focus on our shoot with BaByliss Pro UK at the Chocolate Factory Studio. They were pulling together their latest campaign and we headed up the hair work. We loved working with such a talented shoot team; with photographer David Mannah, Emma Cotteril on styling and Sarah Laidlaw and Talia Kepitis on make-up. The brief was youthful, cool, edgy and editorial but with a commercial edge. Beautiful!
Our last day! We had an interview with Belinda Craige and Hair Expo where we chatted about our experience in Sydney and the work that we’d presented on stage, before heading to a look and learn evening with Eugene Souleiman. It was truly inspiring and we learnt all about his career, inspirations and experiences with Trevor Sorbie, Vivienne Westwood and so many huge names. What a way to end a trip of a lifetime!