DJ Mengzy on Nightlife and Academia

 DJ Mengzy on Nightlife and Academia


Status 40 Under 40 honouree Mengzy talks about balancing nightlife and academia, the music trade’s affect on style, and Kipling backpacks.

Preppy by day, ravey by evening and vampy on sure different nights, the type spectrum of this DJ-academic may be wider than Berghain’s ballrooms. Status 40 Below 40 honouree DJ Mengzy (born Li Meng de Bakker) is of course a member of this eclectic brigade, if not its most distinguished ambassador. Very like 18th-century musicians absorbing the genius of their friends at live shows and operas, she is, without delay, nightlife’s client, its tastemaker and its most discerning critic. And now years of spinning data and protecting EDM for Mixmag Asia have led Mengzy to the pursuit of a PhD in musicology.


How would you describe your type?

My type has modified quite a bit previously few years as my profession in music has developed. By DJ tradition, I’ve been influenced by streetwear, and I incorporate that into my type. On regular days, I like being snug and going for clear, easy fundamentals. For particular events, I really like an announcement piece on the vampier facet. Once I’m out and about within the nightlife scene, it’s one thing in between.

What do you affiliate the phrase “edge” with?

Being daring. Sharp. Self-aware. Fearless.

Does music affect your type?

I wouldn’t say music per se, however being within the music trade definitely does. As a DJ, I believe you should gown the half once you’re performing. Above that, membership tradition has its personal type guidelines and historical past you can’t assist however internalise after some time.

How would you describe the type paradigm in Hong Kong’s DJ world?

I’d say there are a couple of totally different type camps. There’s an eclectic Gen-Z crew that brings collectively Y2K and cyber-goth influences: numerous dyed hair, {hardware} and equipment, asymmetrical silhouettes and daring prints. Then you’ve got your extra basic streetwear heads, leaning in the direction of an American or British aesthetic throughout their trainers, T-shirts, and so forth. And, in fact, there are outliers.

What’s it like being concurrently an instructional and a nightlife fixture?

In my area – musicology – it’s not unusual for students to be lively contributors within the scenes they’re researching. Loads of the literature in dance-culture research is written by DJs, producers and promoters. It’s a whirlwind and a lot enjoyable, however it may be difficult to juggle a double life the place one profession retains you working through the day and the opposite at evening.


What’s your favorite piece of clothes in your wardrobe?

My favorite merchandise needs to be my Kipling backpack. It’s sufficiently small to nonetheless look cute and large enough to pack every thing I would like once I’m out DJing: headphones, USB, pockets, cellphone, keys, make-up for touch-ups … The zippers are as clean as butter and it’s received handy pockets and sections that basically come in useful once you’re in a darkish membership and must entry one thing rapidly. It’s my ride-or-die.

Do you’ve got a muse?

I try Bella Hadid’s Instagram often, for inspiration. Not going to lie, I’ve proven reference photographs of her to my hair stylist greater than as soon as previously couple of years!

Is there a modern persona you discover significantly inspiring?

I’d get some warmth for saying this, however Kim Kardashian. Clearly, she’s a mode icon however what conjures up me about her is how she’s reinvented herself and her profession over time. I respect her latest dedication to criminal-justice reform and the steps she’s taking to turn into a professional lawyer.

What are you at the moment engaged on?

I’m submitting my PhD thesis on the finish of this month, in order that’s my focus now. Seventy thousand phrases written in blood, sweat and tears.

What for you is the most important style fake pas?

Dressing inappropriately for a solemn event.


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