Every month, Nancy leads a workshop for young Black girls struggling with their hair.
One Sunday a month, natural hair specialist Nancy Falaise closes the doors of her Montreal salon to lead a private workshop for young Black girls struggling to love their natural hair. Step-by-step, she teaches them how to wash, detangle, style, and care for their respective hair textures, while also creating a safe space for them to bond over their shared experiences and forge meaningful friendships. Nancy’s Workshop is an intimate and immersive exploration of this journey. It offers a vivid, almost tactile experience of manipulating various curl patterns and textures through the use of extreme close-ups and macro cinematography.
Many things can be gleaned from the relationship between these girls and their hair. This extension of their body, which they struggle to accept, might be their most accessible entry point into unpacking, negotiating, and recognizing their perceived difference from their peers. Talking about their hair allows them to confront issues of self-image and identity closely tied to race.
We come to know these girls as individuals with different interests, ambitions, and personalities, connected by a common thread. Their stories are at once heartbreaking and hope-making, as we watch their self-perception and confidence evolve over the course of a single afternoon. The film is an invitation to observe Nancy and the journey of these girls and is a testament to the immeasurable value derived from strong and empowering female relationships.
Written, Directed and Produced by
Charles Officer, Jake Yanowski
Director of Photography
Preeti Torul & Michal Heuston
Sound Mix and Design
Mathieu Verreault, Lee Paula Springer, Melissa Fuller
Additional Production Services
Front Row Insurance
Naima, Byanca, Ashley, Hélène, Alicia and Nancy Falaise
Adryanna-Dandelle Hector-Taylor, Andrea Gabourie, Brigid Tierney, Erin O’Donnell, Laura Fiorita, Lauren Grant, Lea Marin, Lisa Rideout, Llama Diop, Sam Lewis, Patrishia Frances Taylor, Rebecca J. Smith & Victory Social Club.
In Memory of Mamadou Daouda Diop
© 2019 2671494 Ontario Inc./Canesugar Filmworks