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Brighton Journal | 22nd October 2019

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Dance Upon A Time: Inclusive and Compassionate Underground Music Event

Dance Upon A Time: Inclusive and Compassionate Underground Music Event
Megan Lawrenson

Brighton’s Underground scene is becoming inclusive and compassionate, and three women are taking the lead.

“Dance Upon A Time” is a series of Underground Music DJ Events, where this feminist collective play contemporary house and techno music, whilst promoting conscious and compassionate clubbing.

Earlier this week I met three beautiful women, Dori, Sean and Paula. These women, from completely different backgrounds, cultures and lives, hold one common interest. Underground Music. With coffees in our hands, we were able to chat a little bit about this new wonderful project they have joined forces on.

Dance Upon A Time is a monthly event they are running, with their first event on October 11th, where like-minded people who love Underground Music, come together and dance.

One of the women who has founded this event, Dori, explains, “we want a good venue. A good crowd and good Underground music. This is not happening in Brighton. Not all of these things are present at the same time.”

Paula cheekily added, “sometimes events like this hide bad music with loudness. Ultimately, we want to dance and enjoy time together.”

Dance Upon A Time’s agenda states they are committed to making everyone feel welcome and cared for. Regardless of age, gender, abilities, nationality, race and more.

One of the many issues supporters of Underground music may face is the drug-party culture that comes alongside it. The Dance Upon A Time founders noticed that there are no opportunities to enjoy Underground music itself, without feeling like you are surrounded by drug or alcohol induced peers. Senaj explains that a part of their initiative is that they want to reach to those who “appreciate music more than going out and having a ‘good time” (i.e getting high, choosing to go out clubbing). We want those who choose to come out and listen to music and dance with us.”   

I inquired as to what conscious clubbing meant: “We don’t want to play for drug users”, Paula puts bluntly.

Coming to an event such as this one can be a mindful experience for attendees. “We want people to feel comfortable and welcome, even if they come by themselves. They don’t even have to be in the best state of mind. Just come and enjoy good music.”

They touched upon the fact that there are hardly any- if any at all- spaces to relax and listen to electronic music. Dance Upon A Time aspires to create a safe place for those who enjoy Underground music to come to. 

© Dance Upon A Time

When I asked if this event was “female only”, they quickly dismissed the idea:
“This is not an exclusive event because we don’t believe we should exclude men” Paula said. “That’s not feminism.” Dance Upon A Time aspires to promote diversity and inclusivity. Dori adds, “we want those who are supportive and respectful.”

I asked about how other DJs out there can be involved. Dori states: “whoever wants to get involved with our events really need to connect, share ideas, same interest and be supportive. This is not a competitive space.”

Therefore, Dance Upon A Time aspires to create a safe place to enjoy Underground music.

To relax, listen to good music and to gain a mindful experience with supportive and like minded people. Underground Music shouldn’t only be enjoyed in the confines of your bedroom, or the loud drunken atmosphere of a club. It can, and should, be a mindful experience in a safe place.

If you would like to get involved with anything we spoke about, they are very happy to respond to Facebook Messages. They would love to hear from DJs, local charities for future fundraising events. Dance Upon A Time would also love to respond to anyone who has any questions about any events coming up.

With this mind in, come along this Friday at The Richmond, for 9pm start. Dance Upon A Time would love you to get involved with changing Underground Music. Come dance. Come socialise. All whilst listening to great music.

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