Weaving a story around hair

SELINA THOMPSON for her Dark & Lovely project at Union 105.
SELINA THOMPSON for her Dark & Lovely project at Union 105.
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Artist and performer Selina Thompson brings her highly-acclaimed one-woman show Dark & Lovely to the Crucible Studio this week.

Using memories, music, rum and a ‘Tumbleweave installation’, Selina explores the history and politics of afro hair and what it means to be black, British and female in the UK.

Presented from within the Tumbleweave – a home for hair built from abandoned weaves and hair extensions – Dark & Lovely is an intimate, part-autobiographical and conversational new show that invites audiences to peer through the Tumbleweave.

Using recorded conversations with barbers, hair vendors and customers, feelgood music and written text, this new show explores the complexities of the social debate surrounding black hair.

It celebrates what it means – and doesn’t mean – to be black, through the way women wear their hair.

Selina developed it after talking to black women living in six different cities.

The show was first performed in Chapeltown, Leeds in a disused barber’s shop for a week-long sell-out run.

Selina said: “Dark & Lovely was developed in the barber shops and hairdressers – and making the work was a real coming of age moment for me: one in which I got to reconnect my heritage and cultural upbringing with my developing political consciousness and my practice as an artist.

“I like to think I’ve made something that reflects the love and care that those that opened up their community spaces extended to me – but also something with bite!”

Dark Lovely is at the Crucible Studio this week until Saturday.

Box office: at the theeatre, icall 0114 249 6000 or go online at www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk.

n Sheffield-based hip hop theatre company Rationale Productions present their immersive horror show The Unit at Theatre Delicatessen tonight.

A vast basement space is up for sale.

Embark on a guided tour by your quirky (and sometimes creepy) guide to discover secrets that have been hidden inside this long-forgotten place.

Company artistic director Nathan Geering said: “Be a part of the first-ever fully emersive hip hop horror tour, full of streetdancing skeletons and sights that will shock you to your core! We dare you to enter The Unit… and make it out alive.”

Rationale is a theatre company that specialises in using hiphop dance to effectively tell stories that audiences of all ages and walks of life can relate to.

Their debut show In My Shoes sold out the main stage at the Crucible Theatre and attracted the biggest dance audience ever to a theatre in Plymouth.

The Unit won great acclaim at the same venue last year when it was staged as part of a Horror Souk event.

It proved to be so successful that it is back for another run.

There are three shows tonight and ticket prices for each one are £10.

Online box office: www.brownpapertickets.com.

Performance times are 7.30pm, 8.30pm and 9.30pm at the theatre, which is based on the old Woolworth’s store on The Moor.