Big screen debut for Stone salon
A popular Stone salon takes pride of place on the big screen in a new movie about the Northern Soul scene of the 1970s.
The national premiere of SoulBoy took place at the Kings Hall in Stoke recently and the film is set for cinemas across the country on September 3rd. The coming-of-age movie is set in Stoke in 1974 and tells the story of a local lad’s discovery of life, love – and Northern Soul music.
Most of the filming took place in Stoke-on-Trent, but when producers were looking for a hair salon with plenty of charm and character that just wasn’t like all the rest, they turned to Lyns Salon in Oulton Road.
Owner Lyn Kelsall says: “The producers said they were looking for something that wasn’t all modern and stainless steel and they said my salon was full of character – I think they meant old-fashioned, really, but they didn’t say that! They said my salon was perfect for the film.”
The SoulBoy team took over the Oulton Road salon twice – in 2008 and again in 2009 – and turned it into Trimmer’s for the movie. The street was closed off and all traces of 21st century life, especially the cars lining Oulton Road, had to be cleared away. Old 70s cars were parked up and an old pram positioned outside.
Inside, the transformation was even more dramatic. Lyn said: “They put old wallpaper up, old hairdryers and products were brought in and even things like old magazines were scattered around.”
A lovely old till also took pride of place in the salon during the filming.
Both filming sessions were long days for Lyn and her staff, with work starting at 7am and going on until around 9pm. The small salon was packed with camera operators, sound technicians, actors and the rest of a modern film crew. And the experience has certainly given Lyn an insight into the film world.
Lyn says: “At some points there must have been 50 people in and around the salon. It was crazy. When I watch a film now, I can understand why the list of credits at the end is so long! And things move so slowly. After one of the filming days, I was told that they’d got about three minutes of film – and they’d been working for over 18 hours. It was a real eye-opener.”
Lyn has owned the salon since 1986 but has been hairdressing in Stone since the early 6os. And was she bopping away at the Wigan Casino and the Golden Torch during those heady days?
Lyn says: “It came a bit late for me to be honest. I was really into rock ‘n’ roll and jive in the 60s. Northern Soul came a bit too late.”
You can find out lots more about the film at the official SoulBoy website here
There’s a great report from the Kings Hall premiere on 20th August – and interviews with some of the stars – on the excellent Pits n Pots site here
While we’re on the subject of Northern Soul, Stone has its very own Soul & Motown Night every month at St Dominic’s Parish Social Centre on Station Road. Dates for the rest of this year are 11th September, 9th October, 13th November and 11th December. Find out lots more at Stone Soul Club’s website here