Pause Main Stage for the annual Halloween dance. For two St. Olaf students, however, this night was anything but average. Kari Hanson ’17 and Lindsey Tucker ’17 were the DJs at this year’s dance, becoming the first ever duo of women to DJ a Pause dance.
“It isn’t every day that you’re asked to DJ a Pause dance, one of St. Olaf’s most popular and talked about weekend events,” Hanson said.
Both Hanson and Tucker agree that the experience was something to be remembered. “It was so much fun,” Tucker said. “We had so much more space to dance, and once the floor started filling up the energy was amazing.” Hanson added, “It was amazing to be able to see the reactions of the crowd as a particularly popular song came on.”
After taking a DJ lesson from Ross Nevin ’17 and DJ Toasty last semester, the word got around that the pair were experienced in DJing. James Wheeler ’18, coordinator for the Music Entertainment Committee (MEC)’s campus musicians subcommittee, texted them and offered them the gig. “We were kind of surprised because we had only practiced a couple of times last fall, but DJing a Pause dance has always been on both of our bucket lists so we said yes right away,” Tucker said.
MEC is currently in the process of absorbing the DJ residency program from the After Dark Committee (ADC).
“Before this transition, interested DJs would contact ADC, telling them they have an interest in DJing a Pause dance,” Wheeler said. “ADC would then send a representative to see whether they were good enough, and if they were, they’d get the gig.” As a campus DJ himself, Wheeler is hoping that with this transition he can help make DJing easily accessible for anyone who wants to give it a try. “Weekly practice slots will eventually be open, both for beginners and veterans who are looking to DJ at our school. We as MEC are hoping to work more with the DJs outside of dances to give them more practice for dances, although whomever is hosting the dances still gets to make the final decision on who DJs.”
Hanson and Tucker certainly rose to the challenge, hyping up some 800 St. Olaf students throughout the night. While they are not the first ever women to DJ a Pause Dance, they are the first duo. Women still seem to be lacking when it comes to DJing. “Over the course of my three years here at St. Olaf, I have never seen a female DJ at a dance and I think it’s pretty exciting to be able to see females take charge and lead the party,” Hanson said. Tucker added, “If we can get up there, anyone can.”
MEC is starting to set up practice slots for people who want to learn how to DJ. They are on Sundays from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. If anyone is interested in learning how to DJ, email firstname.lastname@example.org and MEC will send you info and their sign-up sheet for a 30 minute practice slot.