Vivacious in Vienna

Danette Dooley
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Hairstylist Marjorie Clarke works wig wonders for Pamela Anderson

Marjorie Clarke headed to the Hotel Palais Coburg in downtown Vienna with what would soon be half of Pamela Anderson's hair in her bag. Knowing the former Baywatch babe wanted lots of hair, Clarke was packing a wig and hair extensions the colour of Anderson's own hair. I set the wig and the extensions in large barrel curls, so I was ready to go, the Mount Pearl hairstylist says of heading to Anderson's hotel suite May 16. Clarke was in Vienna to style the hair of some of the world's biggest celebrities as they prepared for the city's Life Ball runway fashion show. An annual fundraiser for HIV/AIDS research, the Life Ball takes place in front of Vienna's city hall and attracts more than 40,000 people. Dubbed Europe's largest and most spectacular charity gala, the ball includes a formal gala inside city hall.

Pamela Anderson wears the wig and tresses styled by Marjorie Clarke. Submitted photo

Marjorie Clarke headed to the Hotel Palais Coburg in downtown Vienna with what would soon be half of Pamela Anderson's hair in her bag. Knowing the former Baywatch babe wanted lots of hair, Clarke was packing a wig and hair extensions the colour of Anderson's own hair. I set the wig and the extensions in large barrel curls, so I was ready to go, the Mount Pearl hairstylist says of heading to Anderson's hotel suite May 16. Clarke was in Vienna to style the hair of some of the world's biggest celebrities as they prepared for the city's Life Ball runway fashion show. An annual fundraiser for HIV/AIDS research, the Life Ball takes place in front of Vienna's city hall and attracts more than 40,000 people. Dubbed Europe's largest and most spectacular charity gala, the ball includes a formal gala inside city hall.

Stars that have supported and attended the event in the past include Sharon Stone, Elton John and Liza Minnelli. Celebrity hairstylist Danilo of New York and Los Angeles invited Clarke to this year's ball. His clients include Gwen Stefani and Christina Aguilera. While in Vienna, Clarke got to rub shoulders with Eva Longoria of Desperate Housewives, pop star Katy Perry, former U.S. President Bill Clinton and actress and author Ivana Trump. When she was prepping other models and actresses backstage, Clarke says, Danilo asked her to go to Hotel Palais Coburg to style Anderson's hair. Anderson was to appear on the runway that evening, Clarke explains. That was about 7:30. The main stage show started at 9:20. So, off I went in a BMW. There was a makeup artist with me as well as an assistant.

At the hotel, they were met by a bodyguard and taken to Anderson's suite. The first thing she did was offer us an espresso. She was wearing a towel because she'd just gotten out of the bath. She had no makeup on. Anderson told Clarke to make her hair as big as possible. The stage was in the shape of a big ribbon. Because it was so massive, if her hair wasn't big it would probably swallow her up as a small person, Clarke says. Anderson was friendly and down-to-earth, she adds. What surprised her most about the star was how good she looked when they arrived. Totally undone, in my opinion, she's more attractive than when she's all made up. With the wig and extensions already prepared, Clarke then set Anderson's own fine air in large barrel curls. I combed it all out, I attached the wig and then I weaved the hair extensions between the wig and her own hair. It made it look like she had a massive amount of hair, Clarke says. The look suited the occasion, Clarke says. She would be coming out on stage carrying a large boom box on her shoulder and she would be wearing a gold corset bikini. So, the idea was to make it look almost like an '80s fashion.

Once Clarke was satisfied with the hairdo, she told Anderson to take a look. Without doing so, Anderson told Clarke she loved the look. She was really pleased and I was really pleased, too, because it was exactly what she'd requested. Clarke's awards include 2005 North American Hairdresser of the Year, 2009 Canadian Hairdresser of the Year and 2009 Canadian Master Hairstylist of the Year. In September, she'll head to New York to work a runway fashion show, which she does twice a year. By that time, Clarke will have relocated her Mount Pearl hairstyling studio, the Hair Force, to the new condo building in Centennial Square. In October, she's off to Detroit to share her hairstyling techniques with several hundred hairstylists. Helen Hooper, president of St. John's based-Professional Beauty Supplies, says Clarke is passionate and meticulous about her craft. As she seizes new opportunities, they become personal goals for her. Her accolades speak for themselves, but achieving her goals also results in a strong sense of personal fulfilment and a desire to continue moving forward, Hooper says. It re-affirms that if you are motivated and doing something you love to do, you have found the recipe for unlimited career success and immense personal satisfaction.

danette@nl.rogers.com

Organizations: BMW, Hair Force

Geographic location: Vienna, Mount Pearl, New York Dubbed Europe Los Angeles U.S. Centennial Square Detroit St. John's

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