2017 Festival DJs

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Thursday, October 26 - Sunday, October 29, 2017
Ashvin Iyer

Jim Baker, Organizer, Tucson Tango Festival, Arizona

"You were a marvelous addition to the staff. I would highly recommend you to any festival. You hit home runs with every tanda. We will look forward to your return to a Tucson Tango Festival in the future" (posted on Facebook 4/12/2016)

"Ashvin Iyer is an amazing dj"

Albuquerque Tango Festival Saturday Night Milonga, Albuquerque NM (Saturday, October 29 2016)

"Special thanks to DJ Ashvin Iyer last night for incredible music! We had a difficult time sitting down " (Svetlana Petkovic, Tango Teacher, NM)

"WOW!!!! Congratulations Ashvin!!!! You did absolutely fantastic job here tonight!!! Great music the whole evening long! "

"Ashwin, great music tonight at albuquerque tango festival!" (Ray Barbosa, Chicago Tango Festival organizer)
"You were awesome! ...no one could bear to leave the all-nighter!!"
"Music was just great, a real pleasure. You made a truly GREAT evening for everyone and a special time."
Tango Turns Festival Friday Night Milonga, Los Angeles CA (Friday, Oct 14 2016)

"Your music was superb, and I will remember it!! " (Michael Serry, Organizer)
La Genesis Milonga, San Francisco CA (Friday, August 5 2016)

"Omg Ashvin Iyer killed it at Genesis just now " (Vita Markman, DJ Peer)

"People were talkin' about how great the music was!"

"Really enjoyed your music last night.....you did a great job" (Sabah Chammas, DJ Peer and Organizer)

..More Comments

Jessica Schilling

After years of spinning discs for community radio, ballroom dancers and even a few weddings, Jessica Schilling came to her senses and started DJing tango in 2010 after realizing that it was a great way to write a tango-music addiction off on her taxes. Based in Boston, Jessica's DJ roster has taken her all over the map in the last year -- including the San Diego Tango Festival, ValenTango, the Endless Summer Tango Marathon, the Stowe Tango Music Festival, and more. Jessica strives for a flow incorporating the best of the traditional and alternative repertoire with the hidden gems and quirky treats that make a milonga memorable.
Paul Akmajian
Tucson and Albuquerque
Paul Akmajian

has been dancing tango for close to 20 years and DJing for the last 15. In addition to being a regular DJ in Tucson, Albuquerque and Santa Fe, Paul has DJ’d at numerous major US festivals, marathons, and encuentros, including Portland, Denver, Albuquerque, Seattle, Phoenix, Chicago, Baltimore and many places in between. As a DJ, Paul strives to keep everyone energized and dancing long into the night by playing the best, most familiar, time-tested and dancer-approved music from the Golden Age of Tango.
Michelle McRuiz

Michelle McRuiz has been a tango DJ for seven years, a tanguera for 11, and a dancer for as long as she can remember. She DJs traditional milongas and practicas regularly in Albuquerque and Santa Fe. Her DJing philosophy is simple: Play beautiful, danceable Golden-Age music that keeps dancers on the floor. Michelle has DJed at the Albuquerque Tango Festival; the Las Puertas Tango Marathon; the Austin Spring Tango Festival; the Tucson Tango Festival; the Cambridge Festivalito in the UK (2015 and 2016); the Casa Tango Milonguero Weekend in Salida, Colorado; and various and sundry milongas in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Tulsa, and Cambridge.

Matt Mateo

Matt has been a musicalizador del tango for 12 years.  The compliments he most often receives are, "Not one single bad song," "Everything you play is so danceable," and "You really know how to make tango music sparkle."  In addition to having DJed nearly 400 milongas, practicas, festivals, encuentros, and community outreach performances, he has also helped train new tango DJs and helped others to improve their DJing skills.  Matt is constantly searching for better audio quality in his music, a better understanding of the music and how it effects dancers, and ways to improve his DJing.  He strives to make dancers not want to sit out any tandas, and looks forward to each event as a new and unique experience for creating tandas on-the-fly while riding the dancers' energy flow.

Matt Mateo
Corrales, NM
Thursday Night Opening Milonga
Friday Afternoon Welcome Milonga
Ashvin Iyer
Bay Area
Friday Night Milonga
Saturday Afternoon Alternative Milonga
Brick Robbins
San Diego
Vivian Konstantakos

Addicted tango dancer herself Vivian is  intrigued and mesmerized by the depth of tango music. When she is DJing with the dancers being her inspiration, her desire and intention is to catch the pulse of the milonga, the energy of the floor and create the night alongside with  the dancers one song at the time.
Brick Robbins

Brick DJs both for Tango Festivals and West Coast Swing & Fusion Dance
Events - which immerses him in the worlds of both traditional Tango,
and non Tango dance music.

An extensive backdround in dance, from theater arts to social dancing
gives him a good understanding of the relationship between movement
and music. Long stays in Argentina give him understanding of the
cultural and musical contexts of Tango.

His knowledge of Tango dance, Tango culture, music, and the dancers'
relationship with music, combined with close attention to the room,
allows him to craft a musical environment that keeps the dance floor
full, whether playing Golden Era Classics, modern Tango recordings, or
alternative music.

Derrick Del Pilar
Saturday All Night Milonga - First Shift
Jessica Schilling
Saturday All Milonga - Second Shift
Vivian Konstantakos
Sunday Afternoon Milonga
Michelle McRuiz
Sunday Night Closing Milonga
Derrick Del Pilar

When he is at the DJ station, Derrick selects the best traditional tangos, valses, and milongas with rhythm, romance, energy, playfulness, drama…whatever the dancers seem to be craving at the moment.
Besides being a dancer and DJ, Derrick is an avid student of tango culture. He holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from UC Berkeley, and he has translated books on tango by Lidia Ferrari and Gustavo Benzecry Sabá. He regularly updates his website, www.poesiadegotan.com, with his own English translations of classic tango lyrics.
Although he took his first tango steps in Buenos Aires, Derrick considers Tucson his tango hometown. He has DJed at festivals, marathons, and local events in cities throughout the Southwest and all along the West Coast, including Albuquerque, Phoenix, Tucson, San Diego, L.A., San Francisco, Ashland, Eugene, Portland, and Seattle, as well as in his native Chicago.