Kathryn Robbins is an artist who “does a bit of everything,” from designing and creating murals – that you'll find in restaurants, corporate spaces, malls and on rooftops – to working as a body painter and makeup artist, as well as designing and making theatrical costumes and accessories. Events are another large part of what she does, such as this Sunday’s Tales From Mirage, a fairytale wonderland that will help raise money for Make-A-Wish Shanghai. We caught up with her to find out more.
What is Mirage.M?
Mirage.M is a very well known hair salon based in The Cool Docks. Owner and Salon Director Mandy Wong is my best friend; an amazing hairstylist, she trained in London. She often uses her beautiful salon space for events, film shoots and parties, and she likes to collaborate with other creatives when possible.
The space has been newly renovated, and I often just go down there to relax and have a glass of wine. It’s a place that people congregate, and customers often stay much longer than they need to just to have fun and enjoy the good vibes.
How did Tales From Mirage come about?
Tales from Mirage is a continuation of a few events we have already done for Make-A-Wish Shanghai, a charity that Mandy has been a big supporter of for many years. And, as we all know, that’s the way Shanghai works – once one person gets involved, we all like to try to show our support too.
The last time we held an event was Christmas; a group of us volunteers managed to raise RMB20,000 through donations, which fulfilled the dream of a young boy in a wheelchair to visit the Great Wall and a young girl to give a speech under the stars on a beach.
So, following on from that success, we decided to throw a well-structured, well-sponsored event, only this time we have some big names involved and some amazing prizes to be won, thanks to our partners around Shanghai. Tales from Mirage Vol. 1 will hopefully be the first of many, each time sharing the tales and dreams of a young child whose dream we were able to make come true.
What can people expect?
We will be recreating a fairytale of fantastic delights for you all. We have performances from some of Shanghai’s international performers – a fire performance, stilt walkers, contact juggler, dancers and a world champion acrobat. We also have music by Gypsy Moulin and three DJs.
For the kids, we have an entire kid’s zone, with a bouncy castle and art workshops, an entertainer doing story time and a show from a company called Storybook. As always, I will be organizing my team to do some fantasy face art for the kids too.
Our food vendors include Kebabs on the Grille and Inward Living, while Pangolin Gin will provide us with some delicious cocktails. We have a thrift market with Tibetan-style blankets, handmade jewelry, swimwear, antique lamps, ladies clothing, baby clothes, postcards, digital oil paintings, bags and lots of other crafty things.
In addition, every ticket sold will grant automatic entry into our lucky draw with a chance to win over 25 amazing prizes from our wonderful sponsors. These include meal vouchers from some of Shanghai’s top restaurants, hotel getaways, makeup tutorials, facial treatments, fitness vouchers, pet meal plans, Mirage.M hair vouchers, skin care products, a crystal oil gift set, reiki treatment, yoga wear and much more.
We hear the guys from Storybook will be coming as Harry Potter characters?
We have been very lucky to collaborate with Storybook, a children’s entertainment company that does kids parties, children’s workshops, cooking classed, acting classes and art and crafts for kids. And yes, Andrea from Storybook will be coming with a host of characters from Harry Potter’s Hogwarts. They will be doing a wand making workshop, story time and a small show for the kids. I just want to mention here that all kids can enter the event for free and all of the kid’s workshops and entertainment is also free.
Amazing! Why did you choose Make-A-Wish?
As I said, a group of us have been heavily involved with this charity for a while now, and we are also part of the team that helps to design the wishes. There are many wishes pending, and a lot of critically ill children waiting to have their wishes granted. So we hope that this fundraiser will go towards some of those.
We strongly believe in this charity because the experiences that are created by this foundation inspire hope and strength for children and their families and provide an opportunity and the ability to experience life beyond illness. In the fight against a critical illness, each wish serves as a catalyst for renewed strength and encouragement for every child and their family on their journey.
Make-A-Wish taps into a child’s imagination, and this is at the heart of everything they accomplish. The Make-A-Wish mission is something we in the Mirage.M team believe in and feel very strongly about.
Are there any other projects you are lining up?
We aim to recreate and revisit this event three times per year. We hope this is the first of many magical Tales From Mirage events.