Actress Loses All Her Hair And Turns It Into Her Superpower, And A Show
It was 2014 and actress Jannica Olin lost all her hair, suddenly, in the space of six months. It was Alopecia, the doctors said. "An autoimmune disease with no known cause or cure." And so the journey began. Of losing not just her hair, but her identity. How do you deal with losing that which is your beauty and femininity? Does this now mean people will see you as sick? Or worse. Ugly.
(IM)PERFEKT is the story of a woman's search back to herself. Through losing all of her hair, Olin started to realize just how much of a prisoner she had been to the need for looking a certain way and adhering to a beauty standard that had been inherited through culture, media and advertising.
Olin is thrilled to be making her Hollywood Fringe debut with her powerful one woman show.
"It's really not about hair loss but an access into a bigger question: Who am I now if that which I identify with is gone? Which has me draw parallels to our fear of aging, losing our memory, mobility... Losing our sense of wonder, our being a size 4... I mean, it can be anything and everything. And why don't we see Beauty and Perfection when we look in the mirror? Because I don't know of a Handbook For Humans where it says what those things should look like. Although I guess that "Handbook" is our pop culture, media and advertising industry."
"I started working with Jessica in 2017 to develop the show, but I kept starting and stopping, totally resisting it all and even telling myself that solo theatre wasn't for me. Then I did a TEDx talk in October of last year which made me present to the power of storytelling again, and the impact you can have on someone else with the words you speak. All of a sudden I felt a responsibility and purpose to create the story. And working with Jessica has been amazing. She has such a great eye for this work so once I committed to it, it moved along rather quickly."
As Hollywood's Only Bald Blonde, Olin has definitely carved out a niche for herself. By embracing her "condition" she has gotten to work with some other inspiring creatives, like Janelle Monae on her acclaimed 'emotion' picture, Dirty Computer and Jessie J on the music video Queen. It's all about creating work in an empowered context.
"I want this show to offer... freedom. Freedom to stand proudly and loudly in the beauty and perfection that we all already are and always have been. The beauty and the curse of that is that there is no place to get to; no magical place where you finally feel that you are absolutely perfect and beautiful. It's a practice. It is having the thoughts and being aware of them as opposed to the thoughts having you. That makes all the difference. And it's hard work. Because we live in a culture where we're never quite good enough. There are plenty of companies that make money off of that; "Buy this cream, get this procedure done or buy these clothes ..." It's everywhere so of course there's a constant "lack" when it comes to how we see ourselves. Losing my hair was, literally, one of my worst nightmares come true. Until it no longer wasn't. Going through it, and having come out the other side, I can easily say today, that it was and is a blessing. And if I had the choice to get my hair back, I would say No, thank you. I'm good."
Written and performed by: Jannica Olin
Directed by: Jessica Lynn Johnson
SYNOPSIS: What if that which you identify with suddenly disappeared? Who would you be then? (IM)PERFEKT is a solo show about identity, beauty and labels. Sometimes you need to (literally) lose a part of yourself in order to discover who you truly are. What if you have been Perfect all along? How much precious time have you wasted living like you aren't?
Actress Jannica Olin was the stereotypical blonde blue eyed Swede. Her long hair had always been a big part of her identity. Until suddenly, she lost it all. In (IM)PERFEKT, Jannica takes us on a journey of exploring and uncovering that which we think we are, have to be and maybe, ultimately aren't.
DATES AND TIMES:
June 9 - 4 p.m
June 22 - 12 p.m.
June 28 - 8 p.m.
The Lounge Theatre
6201 Santa Monica Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90038
TICKET PRICE: $15