Pierre Alexandre (born Peter Johann Franz Walser) 24 December 1939) The namePierre became a natural in the early sixties, when hairdressers names where changedby their bosses in the UK, he became Pierre in 1962 and added Alexandre after asuggestion by one of his colleges Jose, when he was looking for a name for his salonopening. It stuck and Pierre Alexandre was born 1 March 1965.
Today he is a globally recognized hairdresser and educator who coined the word“unisex” for salons, invented “the Halo” haircut and operated London’s renownedStudio 17 film-and-photography studio, where dozens of pop icons shot their musicvideos in the 1980s. Publishing giant Condé Nast was one of the studios’ top clients,and casting for several of the James Bond films took place there.
Best known by both his Charisma, Futuristic thinking/approach and creativity PierreAlexandre became one of the first acknowledged “stylists to the rock and pop stars.”He created Rod Stewart’s spiky haircut, trimmed the Beatles’ hair before their first bigmedia interview and counted among his clients, Lulu, Eartha Kitt, Peter Noone andDavid Bowie, the list goes on. Over a 30-year, peak-career period, he appeared at over1,800 hair shows, at which he demonstrated his cutting and styling techniques, andtaught tens of thousands of hairdressers throughout Japan, Europe, Asia, South andNorth America including Canada. During that time, he worked with numerous leadingproduct companies, including Wella, Zotos, Matrix, Schwarzkopf, Clynol and Goldwell.Eventually, he became one of the first hair colour specialists.
In 1984, Pierre Alexandre hosted his own morning television lifestyle show, which wasfilmed in Toronto, Canada, and lead to numerous other television and radio programappearances. In 1985, he acted as an Image Consultant to 20th Century Fox FilmCorporation. Additionally, his work has appeared in hundreds of newspapers andmagazines, including GQ, Tattler, Hairdressers Journal, Hair, Hair Flair, Peluqueras,Swiss Hair, Vogue, Elle and Marie Claire.
His artistic techniques and business and management philosophies continue toinfluence salons today. Presently, he resides in Spain, where he is writing hisbiography and reinventing his career as motivational speaker and hair-trend historian.He now has 3 working Partners who Manage and Run the Pierre Alexandre Salon andAcademy in Manchester, England. 2015 so far shown amazing andprogressive changes at the salon, it includes a total health and Beauty Spa incooperation with 'VD medispa' A second salon is in the planning, and a new Hair careproduct line for the general market is being developed to hit the market any momentnow.
In Pierre's own words, We are set to go for the next 50 years!:)
Pierre at age 13 years, modeling for Pullover's. He's first pay for this work, a bar of Chocolates.
Pierre's first Hair Competition 1958,. He just completed his four and a half yearapprenticeship in Basel and was asked by his boss, to join in his first haircompetition,The theme was to create an adaptation of the, then Fashionablehairstyles. Pierre wanted to be different and created out of real hair a fan which hethen fitted on top of the Swan line hairstyle he created. He Won thecompetition, his first successful professional experience. Hs his model was his oneyear younger sister Evelyne, who trained as a beauty therapist manicurist and jointPierre Alexandre a year after he arrived in the UK.
Pierre Alexandre was born in Basle, Switzerland. Both of his parents werehairdressers, who owned a small salon on the outskirts of the city. In 1955, at the ageof 15, he began his career as a hairdressing apprentice. In 1960, he was recruited bythe English hairdressing company Coiffure Française and moved to England, wherehe began building a career that spanned over 50 years.
Pierre's youngest Sister Karin modeled his style, Karin was one of the first
Supermodels and was trained at the famous 'Sheela Wilson' Model agency.
Emboldened by his success, on the 1st of March 1965, He opened the first PierreAlexandre Salon on St Ann's street corner Deansgate in, It was a two-floor walk to getup to the posh, Regency-style salon, which was above the Jewsbury and Wilsonfashion store. Celebrity clients who didn’t mind climbing the stairs included DustySpringfield, Lulu, Honor Blackman, Eartha Kitt, Danny La Rue, Hylda Baker, GerryMarsden, Peter Noone, Les Dawson, Omar Sheriff, and many more, most of theCoronation Street cast, as well as several show business agents and managers.
In 1968, Pierre Alexandre opened a second salon, Romeo and Juliet, with Lulu as itsstar and a queue stretching more than a half a mile around King Street West andBridge Street. There, he seated boys and girls next to each other, offered them coco-cola, listening to the latest music of the sixties and began calling it a “unisex” salon.Soon after the salon opened, David and Angie Bowie became clients. Later, in 1969,the first salon on London Kings Road that officially called itself a “unisex salon”opened. Pierre Alexandre’s idea had become a bona-fide trend.
Eager to explore the fashion world, in 1969 he opened Boutique Saint- Honoré,naming it after the famous Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré Paris’ on St. Ann’s Street.Located directly beneath his salon, the boutique sold handbags, high-end jewelry,wigs and “falls.” The latter, which used headbands for attachment, were the hairextensions of the 1960s.
With a flourish that the media had come to expect from him, Pierre Alexandre hadPrince Hassan Durrani, who claimed to be exiled royalty from , open the boutique.Inside, women were greeted by the Swiss manager, Christian, was a quickly dubbed a“handsome, blonde sex God.” In the first few weeks, thousands of women queued forhours just to meet him.
In the ‘70s, Manchester was not a very fashionable place to be. So, he beganpromoting it by inviting thousands of hairdressers from around the world to his newPierre Alexandre School of Hair design on King Street West, The Academy.. As hisguests began to fill the then empty hotel rooms and shops, the city took on a wholenew cachet: one of a place where exciting things were happening.
In November of 1971, during a New York layover on his way to see a client in the VirginIslands, he was inspired by some little angels, surrounding a figure that was paintedon the wall at the old New York airport. He began sketching them with short, soft Bobhaircuts, much like the ones he recalled his mother wearing in old photographs. Whenhe arrived back home, he went straight to work, cutting his soft “angel” Bob on twomodels—a blonde and a brunette.
It was a softer version of the geometric Bob Vidal Sassoon had introduced in 1963.Pierre Alexandre also added subtle highlights in lighter and darker shades at thesides. Barbara Duncan, the beauty editor of the Manchester Evening News, featuredhis “angel” Bob in a double-page spread in her newspaper, in an article which hailed:“Pierre has brought back the Bob.”
Two weeks later, Vidal Sassoon opened his first Manchester location and invited PierreAlexandre to his opening party, which was held at Kendal Mils ( House of Fraser). As atribute, Pierre Alexandre brought along his two models. When Vidal saw them,Sassoon told his stylists, “Boys, that’s what you should be doing.” Back in London afew weeks later, Sassoon introduced his own version of the softened Bob at aworldwide press launch.
Throughout the 1970s, Pierre Alexandre continued to build his name and reputation.In 1972, he created the “Tutankhamun” look, worn by Miss United Kingdom, CarolynMoore. The following year, he was invited by Norman Bloomfield, editor ofHairdressers Journal, to join Michael Rasser of Michael John Salon, Christine ofMainline and pop-star stylist Lawrence Falk to appear at an English Fashion Weekevent that was being held at the Sun Plaza Hall in .
After that appearance, Pierre Alexandre began touring Japan for two months everyspring and autumn, for the next 5 years. He and Norman Bloomfield would bringalong suitcases full of 'Hairdressers Journals', promoting the magazine throughoutthe country. Later, the duo did the same in New York at the New York Hair and BeautyShow.
In 1975, Pierre Alexandre was invited by Joshua Galvin to join Intercoiffure Mondial,the worldwide organization of elite salon owners. That autumn, he was invited topresent on stage at the Intercoiffure World Congress, held in Paris, France. During theEnglish hairdressers’ presentation, he secreted hid underneath wigs, two newhaircuts, the “Inter-cut” two tone hazel colours and a form of the flick in bright redand golden highlights, which he named “Halo.” Once he revealed them on stage, bypulling the wig's off the models heads unexpected, he found that while he’d arrived inParis an unknown, he left an international star. Ever a fan, Bloomfield used photos ofthe cuts to publicise a new exhibition and trade show for hairdressers that he hadcreated, which was called “Salon” and was held at the Lancashire Hotel on BayswaterRoad in London from 4 - 12 October 1975.
In 1976. 21 January the Concord was Launched simultaneously from Paris Orly andHeathrow London, Pierre designed a Concord Hairstyle which was featured as adouble page the day after the launch in the Daily Mail, Chicago Tribune and manymore papers around the globe, making Pierre once more a household name globally.These are extracts from the Daily Mirror archive and British Airways fact sheets...1976 - Manchester coiffeur Pierre Alexandre created the £13 Concorde hair-do -permed, soft and pointed
In spring of 1977, Pierre Alexandre reinvented hairdressing yet again with his“Revenge” hairstyle, a softly permed look that he casually dried, using just his hands.He presented it along with a totally new hair-colouring technique, which usedaluminum foils to separate highlights that he created with five different shades ofhazel brown's and soft gold, What are now called multi-colored highlights had neverbeen seen before, and they were featured in various international hair magazines,along with step-by-step photos and instructions that hairdressers could follow torecreate the new colour design.
In autumn of 1977, Pierre Alexandre brought out the “Twig” hair design, which wasintroduced with step-by-step instructions in Hairdressers Journal, along with adouble-spread feature on Pierre Alexandre’s show in . In 1978, he created “The PowerCut” and “The Bird,” along with a whole series of other cuts and styles.
That same year, Bloomfield asked him to headline a show of his own at Bloomfield’snow-annual Salon exhibition. The result was the first time a hairdresser used his ownfashion designs and coordinated hairstyles, along with a singer and choreographeddancers, who followed a theme to tell a story. Today, this has become the standard formost hairdressing shows’ main-stage presentations. The Salon exhibition wasrenamed “Salon International” when it moved to Earls Court. Today, it continues at theExCeL London Exhibition Center.
Through the end of the decade, Pierre Alexandre toured throughout , and ,demonstrating his skills to hundred of thousands of Asian hairdressers. In an industryfirst, he used gigantic projection screens, so that more attendees could get a bird’s-eye view of his cutting and styling techniques.
As his fame grew, he opened his first London Mayfair salon on and began touring theUS, doing hair shows. He also opened the first ever film-and-photographic studio inNorth Audley Street mayfair London and eventually took over the entire building,which stretched the entire block. In a rent-free agreement, he was to protect theempty building from squatters, but he had just a six-month lease to do so.
Fortunately, the landlord’s agents forgot to renew the lease at the end of the six-month period. Instead, they send Pierre Alexandre an electric bill, which he happilypaid because it legally established him as a paying tenant. Thus began the history ofStudio 17.
was adjacent to Pierre Alexandre’s salon. In 1983, he and his team stripped the floorsand painted the walls themselves to ready it for opening. Its floors were polishedwood, while the walls and ceilings were all white. To promote it, he flooded media-and-video-production companies with photocopied brochures, showing the studio inblack and white.
The first client who walked through the doors was Grace Coddington, the then editorof Vogue UK, who brought along Patrick Demarchelier, one of the world’s top fashionphotographers. Thanks to the media exposure the duo provided, it wasn’t long beforemajor pop-music artists began filming their videos at Studio 17. The lead singer ofScritti Politti drove a motor bike down the studio’s corridors for a video that showed aseries of 20 doors slamming behind him. In a blacked-out studio-within-a-studio, topphotographers for Better Homes and Gardens, Vogue UK, Vogue Italy and many otherpublications created their own room-sets with antique furniture and valuableporcelain.
First, Marcel Majoor managed the studios. Later David Rawlins, who was wellconnected with top photographers, joined the management team. As Studio 17’s famegrew, so did the celebrities who flocked there. Regular visitors included Princes Diana,Prince Philip, Grace Jones, Spandau Ballet, Frankie Goes to , Lauren Ashley, TinaTurner, and the editors of Harper and Queen, Tattler and The Mirror Group ofnewspapers.
The casting calls for several James Bond films were conducted at Studio 17. Otherphotographers and celebrities who used the location during the eighties include DavidBailey, Lord Snowden, Hans Gissinger, Bruce Weber and Paolo Roversi. JohnStoddart, rented a small office there when he first arrived from , and Bob Geldorffilmed his Boom Rat videos there.
One day during a photo session, Bianca Jagger stepped in some droppings from thephotographer’s dog and reportedly went in hysterics. Grace Jones smashed PierreAlexandre’s beautiful porcelain dog, during a party held by then top fashion designerKatharine Hamnett. In 1983, famed hairdresser Dwight Miller showed up to interviewPierre Alexandre for a feature that aired nationwide on American television stations.This lead to “Entertaining All Year Round” author Marjorie Reed to bring PierreAlexandre to New York for the launch party of her book. He did her hair for theevening and was introduced to the jet set at her home. Later, Reed organized a“Pierre Alexandre Welcome Party” at the famed Studio 54.
In spring of 1984, he began working with show business manager Derek Rawden, whopromoted the Jackson Five, Andy Williams and other top entertainers—most of whombegan getting their hair cut at the Pierre Alexandre Mayfair salon. Rawden arranged ameeting with Alberto Culver executive Pat Sangster, and the result was a PierreAlexandre tour throughout the USA, which promoted Alberto Culver’s EuropeanStyling Mousse.
During that time, Pierre Alexandre appeared on over 31 radio and televisionprograms, including the Kelly & Company show in , and was interviewed by over 50newspapers. Sales of Alberto Culver’s European Styling Mousse grew to $88 million.This lead to discussions about a Pierre Alexandre product line, but the deal eventuallyfell through.
Back in , he headlined his own show at the Grosvenor House Hotel Park Lane,London. To promote it, he created a brochure for his audience in six languages,including Chinese and Japanese. By autumn of 1984, Rawden had negotiated a dealfor him to host “The Pierre Alexandre Lifestyle Style Show,” which was filmed in andaired on Canadian television.
Through another television appearance on ’s Kelly and Company show, hereconnected with old friend Peter Brown, who by then had authored “The Love YouMake: An Insider’s Story of the Beatles.” Brown happily autographed a copy of thebook, writing: “To , who saw some of this happening.”
Through the remainder of the 1980s, Pierre Alexandre continued to make televisionappearances throughout the , and . He appeared on stage at Cosmoprof, a beautyprofessionals’ product exhibition and show in . He also produced a video to teach“The Stretch,” his method of thinking by stretching your imagination. The videoincluded use of a totally new sign language, which was intended to communicateacross any language barrier, on any level.
In 1986, he worked as a consultant to 20th Century Fox Film Corporation. By 1988, hewas touring the for the Zotos Corporation as its Artistic Director, and in 1989, hehelped organize the company’s International Congress in .
The same year, that electric bill payment he had made long ago to the landlordreaped its final payoff, when he earned a tidy sum by agreeing to leave the premisesin an undisclosed settlement. As a result of the agreement, he closed the Studio 17complex and his salon.
In 1990, Pierre Alexandre cut Donald Trump’s hair and embarked on yet another seriesof global television show appearances. Just a few include:
1990: BBC “Day Time ” at Tonight, and The Steve Wright Radio One Show, .
1991: Television “Up Front” debate on . Granada Television and the ManchesterEvening News—both featured his grooming of the then unknown pop singing group,Take That.
1992: Television’s popular show “This Morning.”
1993: Television’s “House Style,” which exposed Pierre Alexandre’s personal homeand fashion ideas to millions of viewers.
1994: Television’s “Traveller Check.”
1995: “Granada Tonight” and “Surprise Gardener,” which was a series on Home &Garden Television (HGTV). He also appeared on the Pierre Alexandre ShowNovoprof , styling several models, including a young Penelope Cruz.
Appearances included BBC TV’s “The Fall Guys” with Neil Morrissey, as well asGranada Television’s “Pyjama Party” and the “Ulrika Johnson Show.” He also held hissecond, spectacular Barcelona Show, revealing his latest haircuts and styles on over40 models.
1998: Pierre Alexandre continued operating his salon, and produced a hair show in atLOOK ’98, which attracted hairdressers from all over the world.
1999: Appearances included “The Morning Show” on BBC 1 and “What Would YouDo,” a television show about various human dilemmas.
In 2000, Pierre Alexandre became a columnist for local and magazines, writing abouthair and lifestyle issues. He also answered online questions at thewww.ukhairdressers.com website. By 2001, he began a long and an unfortunate seriesof hip and leg operations. He also underwent eye surgery for a degenerative conditionthat nearly caused him to lose his sight.
At the age of 72, Pierre Alexandre fully recovered from his surgeries and beganoccasionally working and teaching at his still-popular Pierre Alexandre Salon andAcademy in .
Described by the media as “youthful looking and full of energy,” he continues to be aforce in the hair, beauty and fashion world, as editors rediscover his “old-school”methods. He travels to his salon from his home in Spain, where he gives mediainterviews, is developing motivational seminars and writing his biography.
2012 Gatsby the great Hair collection
The years of re-thinking and re organize and planning ready for a the next newepisode for another 50 years.
January Pierre Alexandre underwent a other hip operation without complications.
In March Pierre Alexandre Added three new working partners, Karol Skwira, runningthe business, development and marketing, Chris Willoughby and Dave Moore bringthe art and education. In August the partners, added total health and beauty to thehair salon division, a second salon is in the planning and the first Pierre Alexandrehair care line is being launched. The future for the Pierre Alexandre Brand is lookingamazing.. will this man ever stop? I guess not! :)
In Pierre's own words, I am happy and very lucky to have my amazing partners, ithelps me to be able to recuperate from my last Operation knowing that my threepartners doing an amazing Job, I am informed by my partners on a daily basis of allthe wonderful new things happening, I am very excited for our future.
http://www.pierrealexandrehair.com/Main salon site (Click on about Pierre and Watch the Gatsby video and click on thepictures below, 50 years history will appear)https://www.youtube.com/user/PierreAlexandreShows(Pierre Alexandre Show, TV, Interviews on youtube)
https://youtu.be/x74zeMItYyw PierreAlexandre show Barcelona 1995, with a very young Penélope Cruz as his model)
It is to remember that hair alone is not the art, the art in hair is what you can createfrom it, however the balance and the colour matters most.
Remember that from the craziest creations, Ideas for commercial designs come out ofit.
Stop, doing hair when you don't enjoy it any longer, because you can no longer giveyour soul and heart.
Money alone is not where the satisfaction lies, it is clearly the devotion to create theart.