Assana Azpire

Dekort, Lilley, Vriend

Assana Azpire who runs Soraya’s House of Beauty.

In Harlem, hair isn’t just a style; it’s a way of life. You can get your hair done almost anywhere: 125th St. alone is home to dozens of hair braiders and the shops they run. Many of the braiders hail from Africa and the Caribbean, like Assana Azpire who runs Soraya’s House of Beauty at the corner of Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd and W. 124th St. A short film by Noëlle D. Lilley with additional cameras and sound from Julia Vriend and Anna Livia Dekort. 

A Portrait of New York is an assignment for documentary film students at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism @CUNY and Dutch students visiting from Utrecht University of Applied Sciences, the Netherlands to produce a compelling, character based, visual vignette. The class is co-taught by Newmark-J Professors Bob Sacha, Yoruba Richen and Utrecht Professors Brian Maston and Arjan Kroon.

Noëlle D. Lilley is a 23-year-old southern California native and journalist. Her work can be found at The Nation, 23ABC News, Arizona PBS, amNewYork, Chicago Reader, BKLYNER, and more.  Anna Livia De Kort is a 20-year-old student who lives in Utrecht, Netherlands. She is studying journalism. Julia Vriend is a 19-year-old studying journalism at HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht. De Kort and Vriend are making a documentary about a Dutch-Morrocan family that has to deal with a hereditary bone fracture disease.

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