Mammalian Diving Reflex: Haircuts By Children

Adults get their hair cut by children in this audacious site-specific experience.

Would you let a child cut your hair? Most people would be more comfortable allowing children to vote than to trust their creativity with a pair of scissors.

Haircuts By Children does what the name suggests: after a week of training, a group of 10-year-old youths set up shop at hairdressing salon Alice Rocks, testing out their new styling skills on willing participants.

This playful participatory experience explores the intimate and rare moment shared between two unlikely strangers – an adult and a child – in a performance about power, trust, and society’s acceptance of children as creative and competent individuals. With the whole experience led by the children from start to finish – from booking your appointment to offering you a drink while you wait – the challenge for the audience is to set their vanity aside, relinquish control, and show how much trust they really have in a child’s creative ability and sense of responsibility.

Please note that audience members who do not wish to get their hair cut are welcome to come down to the salon and watch.

Toronto-based collective Mammalian Diving Reflex make one-off events, site-specific experiences and community happenings, dismantling the barriers which exist within the social sphere and letting dialogue flourish between performers and audience members.


Join us for Mammalian Diving Reflex: Introducing Social Acupuncture, a rare chance to hear the the company introduce and explain their concept of ‘social acupuncture’, on Wednesday 25th April.
Reserve your free ticket

“Toronto’s messiah of experimental theatre… a catalyst for imaginative absurdity” on Mammalian Diving Reflex artistic director Darren O’Donnell

Part of Behaviour 2012the Arches’ festival of live performance. For more see HOW WE BEHAVE, the Behaviour blog documenting seven artists’ journey through the festival.