We chat to Swing Dash owner Felix, alongside DJs Aura, Princess Trium, and Beaabea, about their International Women’s Day 24-hour livestream, their own respective projects, and the future of Swing Dash as a studio…
What are you looking forward to most about the 24-hour livestream?
Beaabea: Being exposed to different artists and DJs that we don’t know about, especially if they’re not actively on the scene. It’s a really good way to meet new people and find people that you might want to collaborate with or book them for events.
Princess Trium: It will be good to have the opportunity to be around women and non-binary DJs, and meet other DJs and promoters.
Aura: It’ll be quite inspiring. It might be some people’s first time in a setting where they’ve played with more people. I didn’t realise how many women and non-binary DJs were in Nottingham until now. It would be great to find aspiring new talent!
Which charity will the livestream be supporting?
Beaabea: Nottingham Women’s Centre, it’s a hub for everything that women may need if they’re in a vulnerable situation, or if they want to go to a place where they can meet other women. It goes from ages eighteen to… as old as you can be, really! They have a legal team that you can get free services from, they run coffee shops, workshops, and we’re looking at doing music workshops with them. They’ve been there for 51 years, and it’s still going strong. I think this will give them exposure, so it’s a win-win for everyone.
Aura, you run Gyals in Notts, alongside co-creator Nell. How did you both come up with the idea?
Aura: It started as a livestream which also raised money for the Nottingham Women’s Centre. As much as it was for a cause, it was just a really good night as well. I started it because I was sick of seeing so many male-dominated line-ups, it felt daunting and a bit scary as the only woman playing. I wanted to create a space where it was the reverse of what the norm is in Nottingham.
It’s a really good feeling to have a room full of people who are there to see women DJs, and for everyone to feel comfortable
Princess Trium, what drew you to Hunnisuckle Collective?
Princess Trium: After the first Hunnisuckle event, we came together and said, ‘We want to make this a little bit bigger.’ We want people, especially LGBTQ+ DJs, people of colour and black people, to come to our events and be in a safe space. We try to book DJs that are coming from Brazil, Africa, places that are outside the country, and just bring the vibes, for people to be who they want to be.
We have a new event coming up for International Women’s Day – a two-day event with a DJ workshop and a business talk about how to become a DJ, how to come up with your name, how to get bookings and get in touch with promoters. It will be an opportunity for people to network. We’re also doing a contest where the winner gets a month of free studio time at Swing Dash!
And Beaabea, you created How Did It Get So Late… – how did that come about?
Beaabea: We’ve only done one show so far, the next one is coming up in early March. Rough Trade allowed us to do a couple there, but we are going to move elsewhere. I’ve had the idea of creating it for a long time, but didn’t know which angle to go at it, and spent so long planning what I wanted it to be like. It was really nice to see it come to life, and it’s a really good feeling to have a room full of people who are there to see women DJs, and for everyone to feel comfortable. There’s mutual respect between the line-up, with no one trying to be better than each other.
Felix, what plans do you have for Swing Dash in 2023?
Felix: We are introducing livestreaming, so the International Women’s Day event will be livestreamed; we have two cameras in the studio. We’re also planning to put on more events, community things, and we’re hoping to open another studio in Bristol. The idea is to have multiple livestreaming studios, with all the streams on a central social media website. Essentially, it will be a livestreaming Instagram for DJs to scroll through, drop into your friend’s DJ set, comment, use a chatroom... the idea is that it will be social radio.
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