At last night’s Trend Vision North America, P&G Technical and Creative Director and host for the evening, Fabio Sementilii, introduced a video greeting from P&G Salon Professional’s CEO, Reuben Carranza, saying, “If Reuben were here, you know what he would say to all of you? He’d say ‘Hello, Winners!’”
With this, Carranza (via Sementilli) supplied my headline and my theme: Hello, Winners. Last night was proof that competition for competition’s sake has its own rewards. Everyone of the finalists—and, before that, each of the entrants to the competition—won what comes from the act of disciplining yourself and setting your mind to a task; they won the knowledge that they could do it, they could meet the deadline, they could gather a crew or their own resources, and that they had what it takes to compete. This year’s entries to Trend Vision were double that of 2012.
As a judge, clipboard firmly in hand, I walked the line of stations last night and eyed each creation in progress. The doors to the LA Live Event Deck had been opened an hour prior to the live stage show so an eager crowd was gathering in buzzing clusters about each finalist and their model. While yesterday was the technical judging and a survey of the haircutting and coloring, last night was finishing, finessing and perfecting. As the final looks revealed themselves, and as the models stepped into their costumes (hiding behind capes and station mirrors) a full vision was realized. And judging became really, really difficult.
Throughout the Event Deck, where Trend Vision was staged, installations had been established to reflect the P&G Salon Professionals’ brands and to showcase finished looks and works in progress. Modern Salon editor, Alison Shipley, was integral in pre-show commentary, working with two others to build excitement and introduce the proceedings.
The show opened with the aerial feats of Cirque Berzerk. Appropriate, considering the graceful twisting, turning and perfect balance displayed by the competitors in their work. Sementilli kept up a brisk pace, knowing the waiting crowd had a stake in the outcome of the competition and was eager to make their presence known.
Both Sebastian and Sassoon did live performances. Sassoon Academy’s Color Director, Richie Rivera, was also a judge. Sassoon sent models down the catwalk to a hypnotic beat, their angular hair echoed in the faux masks lining their faces and the sleek lines of their silhouettes. “Our inspiration was ‘Modern Hair Design.’” said Rivera. “At Sassoon, we talk about cut and color as shape and balance. The look is underpinned by precision technique.”