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Haircuts by ChildrenHaircuts by ChildrenHaircuts by Children
Haircuts by ChildrenHaircuts by ChildrenHaircuts by Children
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Darren O'Donnell
Haircuts by Children
January 26 and 27, 2008 12pm - 4pm
NuNu's Salon and Spa

Mammalian Diving Reflex's Haircuts by Children explores and engages the enfranchisement of children, public trust in youth, and our contemporary culture of vanity. Offering free public haircuts by 10 year olds at local salons, Haircuts by Children playfully invites children to "shape our destinies" and, in turn, asks the audience-participant to consider the role of our youth in civic structures and deeper issues of citizen rights. Founded in 1993, Toronto-based Mammalian Diving Reflex is devoted to the creation of activist performance, which links social commentary to audience engagement and action as an expression of what the collective theorizes as "social acupuncture." Mammalian Diving Reflex's commitment to the opening up of issue-focused social dialogue is realized through their accessible and entertaining artistic practice.

Following sold-out runs in Toronto, Los Angeles, Birmingham, Portland, Dublin, and New York, Haircuts By Childreninvites you to participate in an event that will test your courage and faith in the future. Surrender your preconceptions (and your scalp) to the aesthetic choices of these mini-barbers. A whimsical piece that plays with the enfranchisement of children and the level of trust we afford them, creates dialogue, a reversal of power, and puts your vanity to the test. Let the children cut away your fears and prove themselves leaders of the future, capable and responsible citizens and dedicated coiffures in a show that was "one of the highlights of LA's cultural calendar." (Modern Painters Magazine)

"In the future, every child will be given a pair of scissors and invited to shape our destinies. In the future, every child will be granted full citizenship rights; encouraged to vote, run for office and drive streetcars. In the future, children will teach and adults will learn; a playground will be built on every battlefield; and candy will be free. In the future, children will be powerful creatures able to cross the street without looking both ways, and hold their breath underwater forever and ever and ever."
- Darren O'Donnell

Presented in collaboration with the 2008 PuSh International Performance Festival.


Mammalian Diving Reflexis firmly constituted to alter the viewer's consciousness, creating unforgettable work that is at once furious, riotous and rigorous. Mammalian Diving Reflex smashes ideas together at high speeds to see what pops out, inadvertently producing ideal entertainment for the end of the world.