Jenni Valli

Do you remember your first milonga as a DJ? How did it all begin? Why have you decided to become a tango DJ?
- My first time was a shared dj'ing with a friend. We made a full set of nuevo and non-tango music in Helsinki, as that was something we felt was missing at the time (2007). Soon afterwards we started the first weekly milonga in Tampere, my tango home city, and I was one of the few who had the interest in playing regularly at the time. Traditional tango, too, was included in the sets, little by little. But, i never decided to become a tango dj. It just happened.

When do you like to play music more: in the afternoon, evening, night, afterparty? Why?
- All of these times of the day are good for dancing, all of them have their different energy. I wish I could choose, but i cannot!

What music do you like besides tango?
- I try to stay open with styles of music, but I tend to like more music with melancholy, groove, intensity, or drama.

What do you like more - to play music or to dance?
- Dance?!

What is your favourite flower? :)
- Gypsophila.

Favourite activities (hobbies) besides tango
- Collecting: music, movies, books, detective stories, tableware design. Sports too, one day, i hope.

How did you start dancing tango? Have you danced (do you dance) other dances?
- I used to dance swing dances, lindy hop and balboa a bit, and so called Finnish social dancing (Finnish tango included). Argentine tango came along, stayed and eventually took over. I still enjoy swing dancing a lot, but I don't think it will ever take the place of tango.

What else have you been doing in tango: organisation of milongas, festivals, teaching…?
- I've been active in my local (Finnish) tango scene for a long time, in many ways. I've co-organized milongas, workshops and events, e.g. Tangosauna and World of Tango Festival as most internationally known of them, since almost 10 years.

How has your musical taste evolve during your tango life/DJ career?
- Lots, I have to say, and most probably it will keep evolving, as I learn more and grow. First, I was very much into nuevo/non-tango, I think it was easier to approach, especially with my swing dancing background. Then I started liking music like Tipica Victor and early D'Arienzo - with Echague especially, but also Troilo with Fiorentino and D'Agostino. Later, I learned to like more melodic and, let's say, perhaps more subtle music. For some reason, Di Sarli has taken the most time, but now i'm beginning to feel it too.

How do you choose music at a milonga?
- It's always a subtle and rather last minute choice, something varying between taste, moment, mood and tradition.

Without what songs/orchestras a milonga can’t be a good milonga?
- D'arienzo. Troilo. Di Sarli. Pugliese. Songs don't really matter, but the essence/feel of the music.

Where do you dream to go to?
- Scotland and Paris!

What song do you associate with Minsk Spring Tango Festival?
- A good mixture of talent, good mood and intensity > La marca del fuego by Biagi.