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Personalitys in the revolution of hair design in the 60s 70s | all galleries >> Galleries >> Early years at Vidal Sassoon > Fumio Kawashima and Santilli with a Japanise student
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Fumio Kawashima and Santilli with a Japanise student

Hi Fumio, You came from Japan to work in London?
No, not directly. I first went to Canada and was working their for around two years. I worked for Glemby in Toronto. I came to London in 1969 for a new challenge. I went directly to Vidal Sassoons, as one of the directors of Glemby had written a letter of introduction for me to Roger Thompson. Roger sent me to talk with Joshua Galvin who hired me and sent me to the Knightsbridge school to teach me the Sassoon techniques and philosophy. Caroline Hays was the teacher.
Who took your test?
My test was taken by Howard Fugler and Darill Benson.
Which salons did you work in?
I worked in Bond Street and then the South Moulton street Salon and a stint in Manchester.
Tell me something about the Box Bob haircut that you were the protagonist off!
I had done this haircut for the Times newspaper and Christopher Brooker had seen it and asked me to do the photo with another Model and so he organized the model called Spicy and the photographer John Swanell and we set it up and I did the look again.
I was particularly interested in your conversation about the first time you saw the new graduation and you tell me that you saw Darill do it first. He took the hair forward and you saw it graduate back into a shape at a Bond street sware!
You tell me that your best memory of shows was the time you came to Japan with Sassoons with Trevor Sorbie and Henry Abel.
I remember the time you came to the Vidal Sassoons Academy Queen street and your model was Siouxsie Sioux who is considered to be one of the most influential British singers of the rock era.
Yes, I used to do her hair in 1974.
Who would you consider to be your Mentor in the sassoon company?
That would defiantly be Christopher Brooker.
Why did you leave Vidal Sassoons?
In 1975, I wanted some independence and at the time I was approached by many hairdressers from Japan who asked me to teach them and so I thought why not go for a new challenge.
Where did you teach. I went all over Japan teaching in just about every city in the country.
Some memory's of your time in London?
I had seen some hard times. My wife and I were living in Shepherds Bush quite a seedy area at that time and my rent was over half my wages (around 14 pounds a week) it was a struggle to live but I enjoyed every moment of it and seem to be the great times I remember more than any others.
What haircut do you think is the best from Sassoons?
The BOX BOB of course! LOL.
Today you have 5 salons with 250 staff all around the road called OMOTESANDO.
Yes, I came here and opened my first salon 30 years ago and it was not considered a good area. Some thought me a bit mad to come here but today its the very best of places.
Thank you Fumio

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