If you’re looking for big blowouts and even bigger bouffants, why not stop by El Greco of Hornsey; a salon, a kitchen and a confessional all rolled into one. Sit back and relax as Olga travels back to the 80’s and into a busy day at her mother’s salon; where the only thing louder than the customers are the chart-topping songs on the radio.
A tale of growth, rolling with the times and cutting a new shape for your adult self
A tale of growth, rolling with the times and cutting a new shape for your adult self; Olga dances between stories of the past and her hopes for the future, with many customers visiting in between.
As the hair dryer hums, we’re taken through a busy day of peculiar patrons, annoying aunties and wannabe matchmakers - all played by Olga Thomson. From the groans of an elderly Aunt rising from her chair to the wistful sighs of a teenager dreaming of bigger things - Thomson delivers characterization with clout and confidence. Although the changes between characters felt a little haphazard - this added to the charm of the small room, filled with big voices from the past.
The salon itself is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the show. A delicate balance of care and clutter; it’s filled with a mix of lovingly framed Hollywood stars, bright rollers and delicate china. It’s a warm and authentic space which immediately makes us feel right at home and ready for the Hospitality of Helen, Olga's mother.
Wonky camera work and well timed close-ups give this show a real comedy edge. A hybrid of Acorn Antiques and This is England; this production has all the attributes of an off-the-wall documentary with clever comic timing. The direction, by Katina Kangaris, added an additional layer of intimacy that might not have been achieved on stage, making this a thoughtfully transposed piece, emerging in an altogether different Fringe Festival.
El Greco of Hornsey is a charming story with a nostalgic soundtrack and plenty of soul. If you’re looking for a little piece of 80’s England, traditional Greek hospitality and plenty of heart- this is the show for you.