THE AGENDR

Meet the ones with an AGENDR! 

These are persons who are movers and shakers in the industry, changing the face of sound….
and ROCKING IT!

Every month we feature someone new who is doing their part to educate, empower and create awareness of women, girls, non binary, trans and gender non conforming persons in the audio and AV industry in Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean region.

 
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INTRODUCING
BATTI MAMZELLE

Batti Mamzelle is a Trini DJ collective that was born out of a shared vision for fun and inclusive event spaces that center LGBTQI+ folks in Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean and its diaspora.  Batti Mamzelle began as an idea generated by friends while liming at a bar. After brainstorming over a few weeks, we ultimately came together for a group lime to discuss the possibility of creating our own space.


Although we're known for our parties, we wanted Batti Mamzelle to also be a space where a number of workshops could be held, with topics ranging from sex education to gardening tips.

Having moved back home after studying abroad, we missed aspects of queer spaces & nightlife and the options they offered. We were inspired by spaces like BBZ (London), Haute Sauce (NYC) & Papi Juice (NYC) and thought we could have a similar vibe with a Trini twist. If they could do it, why couldn't we?  

We always wished we could DJ at events and spoke about all the different playlists we would create, and found ourselves spending hours searching & listening to music together. At that time, we manifested the idea without realising we did.

We organised our first event in January 2019 but it wasn't until July when we were asked to DJ at The Bald Babes Bashment that we had an opportunity to perform as DJ's. That period was really exciting and terrifying, as we only had a month to learn everything from software to equipment. Nevertheless, we were determined to overcome the steep learning curve. We began to learn together, utilizing youtube, and any online resource we found useful, we shared.  DJ SourDiezel, was very instrumental in helping us source music as well as giving us tips to better our craft.

Bald Babes Bashment was still the most crowded gig we've ever played and it really motivated us to learn even more, to keep going, to keep DJing. From then, we've been able to DJ at different events, host our own events and raise enough funds to buy a controller! Our music tastes range from Trinibad to GQOM (South African House), to funk, to RnB. We try to play eclectic mixes with songs people would recognise while incorporating a "new sound" they weren't as familiar with.  Music is diasporic and so are we, so it's important for us to try to highlight ALL of it in our sets.

 Our biggest challenges as DJs have been funding, sourcing of equipment for our events, locating suitable venues. Now, with coronavirus, some of the plans we had were put on hold, but this only pushed us to reassess and recalibrate our plans to further meet the needs of the community.

It's still challenging to be out and proud, but our hope is that a variety of accessible, inclusive, and affordable queer spaces (not limited to parties) can be forged

from this. We also hope that local DJs, artists, and musicians, who have been advocating for this through their art forms get the recognition they deserve. Maybe an LGBTQIA+ centre can one day accommodate us all... 


We are so grateful for the friends, family and community who show up to our events, support us and encourage us to keep going with this dream. 


Credit: Mix by GawdX (ig: @gawdX) for Batti Mamzelle (@batti.mamzelle)


Photo credits: Acute Angle (@acutean9le)