“It can feel like it’s just a conversation about hair,” Tracee Ellis Ross says to Oprah in a scene from the new docuseries “The Hair Tales,” “but it’s not.”
“It never is,” Oprah says back to her.
The new six-part series, produced by Oprah Winfrey, Tracee Ellis Ross and Michaela Angela Davis, has premiered its first two episodes on Hulu and was celebrated this past week with a dinner at the Boom Boom Room at The Standard High Line hotel. Mariah Carey joined Ross and Davis, along with Gayle King, in hosting the event, which recognized the premiere of the show, which was created by Davis.
The show, as Ross says in an episode, is “using hair as a metaphor for us to be with the humanity of us as Black women.” Throughout the series, six women — Issa Rae, Rep. Ayanna Pressley, rapper Chika, Marsai Martin, Chloe Bailey and Winfrey — discuss their own relationships to their hair.
Carey brought her daughter Monroe to the event in a rare public appearance; Davis cowrote Carey’s 2020 book “The Meaning of Mariah Carey” alongside the music icon, and is also cowriting Carey’s upcoming children’s book “The Christmas Princess.”
Unable to attend in person, Winfrey sent a surprise video message for the dinner guests from her home in Montecito, California.
“This was quite a journey — a pleasurable journey, to get Black women to have the fullest expression about our hair and share our stories in a way that bonds us as we deserve to be,” Oprah told the room. “I am so delighted that you’re doing this party tonight. I would be there at your party if I wasn’t already hosting a party for ‘Queen Sugar’ celebrating the seventh and final season. So after we all have some delicious foods, we’re going to watch ‘Hair Tales’ and join you all in the celebration. West Coast, East Coast…enjoy everybody.”
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