Sundaylite | Fashion

‘Bollywood is equal to Hollywood’

Yianni Tsapatori

Yianni Tsapatori   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement


says engineer-turned-celebrity hairdresser, Yianni Tsapatori, as he discusses his journey from Bergen in Norway to Bollywood

Back in the 1980s, Yianni Tsapatori recalls watching Bollywood movies with his mother, in Kozani, a quaint city in northern Greece.

“It’s so funny that I am part of the industry now,” smiles the celebrity hairstylist of Greek and Italian descent. “It’s a crazy combination,” he laughs, his cerulean eyes twinkling.

Hair dresser to a gamut of celebrities including Katrina Kaif and Deepika Padukone, Yianni was in the city recently for the launch of Vurve Signature Salon’s new outlet in Palavakkam. Also the global ambassador for Balmain Hair Couture, he introduced hair products by the French luxury fashion house at the salon.

An unexpected journey

While Yianni has travelled all over the world styling people, he didn’t always want to be a hairstylist. In fact, he studied Engineering and even taught aerobics during his stint in Bergen, Norway.

“My mother and sister run a salon in Greece. I remember my mom coming back exhausted. She had to be on her feet all day, do people’s hair and talk to them. Some of them come with problems — broken relationships, divorce — and she had to be there for them, and entertain them. She only had Sunday to rest. I didn’t think I could do all that,” says Yianni.

‘Bollywood is equal to Hollywood’

“But here I am, 20 years later, doing exactly what she did. I am becoming my mom now!” he adds, with a laugh. He believes the cold Norwegian weather may have had something to do with his decision. It made him miss the golden sunshine of his hometown. So he returned to his country, cradled by azure waters. And the next thing you know, he became the Edward Scissorhands of Greece!

Eventually, Yianni moved to New York and then to Mumbai, where his first assignment was styling Alia Bhatt’s hair for a magazine shoot.

“I recently did Kareena Kapoor Khan’s hair, and got a lot of messages from all over the world asking for similar cut and colour. Because of social media, people know what you do,” he adds. He has also done Kareena’s hair for two of her upcoming movies — Good News and Angrezi Medium.

“While styling for films, I’m usually given a direction about what the character is all about. For example, in Good News, her character is of a modern girl trying to conceive. So, I’ve kept the look real while in Angrezi Medium, she plays an agent, and her character is rough, modern and edgy. So, I kept her hair style younger and fresh,” he explains.

Yianni Tsapatori with Kareena Kapoor Khan

Yianni Tsapatori with Kareena Kapoor Khan   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Kareena, Yianni remarks, is open to trying out new looks. “She is confident that it will work on her. Kangana Ranaut is gutsy too,” he adds.

Talking about the styles he creates, Yianni says, “I don’t like the set kind of look. A lot of people try to play it safe. I try to make it look international.”

He adds, in conclusion, “People should understand that Bollywood is equal to Hollywood. They should experiment more. That’s what I bring to the table — fresh, young and undone looks.”

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 2:29:26 AM |

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