Uchenna Dance – The Head Wrap Diaries – Autumn Tour Dates Announced
London, UK: Uchenna Dance’s THE HEAD WRAP DIARIES autumn tour rolls out to London this month, followed by Salford in October. The 60-minute dance theatre production, performed by three fierce, clever and witty female performers (Habibat Ajayi, Sheila Attah, Shanelle Clemenson) explores femininity, beauty, culture, and most importantly; hair in a fusion of House, Waacking, Vogue, African and contemporary dance.
Uchenna, led by Creative Director Vicki Igbokwe, was founded in 2009. This tour, the company’s first opens with THE HEAD WRAP DIARIES at The Place, London on September 19/20, and visits The Lowry in Salford on October 18.
THE HEAD WRAP DIARIES explores “women, beauty, hair and culture”, told through the eyes of a black woman, but 35-year-old Vicki insists the issues and messages are universal. “When I was in my late teens, early 20s, there were very few black women who wore their natural hair, but now it’s the absolute reverse. It’s such a massive movement. So the show is very timely because it helps to get the story told.
Up to 2014 Vicki had done “just about everything” with her hair. “I went through every single style. I had just got a new set of braids done and, as everyone knows, they take as long as going to Paris and back on the Eurostar. It was then that I decided to embrace my natural hair. I told my friend the next time she saw me my braids would be gone.
“The next morning I chopped the braids off – just chop, chop, chop. So I sat there, 33 years old and about to set off on an amazing journey of exploration that inspired the show and realising there were women out there going through exactly the same thing.
“I see it all as a form of empowerment, whether that is watching a show, attending a workshop or having a one to one session. Dance and movement for me are other forms of communication that I use to enable people to Think Fierce, Be Fabulous and Live Free. In doing so you expand the ‘possible’ in your everyday life and take action.
“I think I’m only just scratching the surface on where this show can go, and it is only one element of the story. I want to take it further through fashion, workshops, festivals and various other projects.”
THE HEAD WRAP DIARIES is Uchenna’s first soiree into the world of touring at The Place in Euston on September 19/20. Unsurprisingly, the audience will also be able to enjoy a multi-sensory experience at the pre-show bar installation and learn how to tie a head wrap at the post-show Head Wrap Bar.
“I wanted to make the show funny and uplifting. You’re more likely to get your story across than with a serious political presentation,” said Vicki. “I also think the world we are living in at the moment badly needs some laughter and lighter moments, allowing people to breathe easy for an hour or so.”
Uchenna, Vicki’s Nigerian name, means God’s will. It links to her movement style and is all about empowerment and being able to ‘let go’.
THE HEAD WRAP DIARIES
The Place, London
19/20 Sept 2016, 8pm
020 7121 1100
The Lowry, Salford Quays
18 Oct 2016, 8pm
0843 208 6000