Disco Disasters and Embarrassing Moments
In the eight or so years that I ran my Roger Squires Mobile Discotheques business, my team of mobile DJs managed to provide entertainment at over 12,000 events. Nearly all of these bookings were generated through satisfied clients resulting in a very high recommendation rate. The only reason I mention these high booking numbers is because I am now going to bare my soul and tell you about a few disco disasters. Yes, very occasionally, things did go wrong. So here goes (Im getting embarrassed already)...
The Wedding Cake Fiasco
Even with the large team of DJs that I managed, I still succeeded in going out gigging (oops, should have said compering functions) two or three times each week. So there I was on a Saturday night setting up my kit on a low stage in a rather bland North London function hall. It was yet another wedding reception and the time was around 6pm. The guests were getting slowly sozzled in the adjoining bar room and the best man had told me that he planned to lead everyone into the main hall for dancing and merriment at around 7pm. 'Pretty routine' I thought.
But then it suddenly dawned on me there was a rather tall four tier wedding cake placed on a trestle table directly in front of centre stage. Horrors! This was going to ruin my visual control of the dance-floor. The trestle table was higher than the stage and the top tier of the cake was directly blocking my line of site to the audience. Disaster!
Now I know that some DJs are very obedient and would have simply peered around this huge cake to view the audience. But such a compromise was unthinkable for me, as it would have limited my entertainment style. I always sought to maintain maximum eye contact with my audience to help me build rapport and skillfully guide the evenings entertainment.
So I asked the best man if he could carefully move the trestle table (with the gigantic cake), into a new position in the corner of the main hall, but still near the stage. I explained why and he was happy to oblige, heading off to enlist some helpers to carry out the task.
Cries as the Cake Collapsed
By the time the best man returned I was sitting down just out of view behind the partly drawn back stage curtains, filing new record releases into their appropriate categories in my record box. Suddenly, I heard three cries plus the sound of a collapsing trestle table. This was followed by multiple plopping sounds as each of the four tiers of the wedding cake landed on the dance floor. I peeped around the curtain to see the end result - and it was indeed a disaster. Even the miniature statuette couple from the top tier had flown some distance across the room.
Now I am not proud of what I did next, but it was still probably the right decision. I decided to retreat further behind the stage curtains and hide! After all, it wasnt my fault that some very silly person had placed the cake centre-stage blocking the entertainment. And it wasnt my fault that the best man had failed to check his two helpers for their vertical stability skills!
It took them around twenty minutes of patient rebuilding to get the cake roughly back into its original shape. Meantime, I was still hiding. Fortunately, one of the three helpers had locked the bar room door to make sure that the bride never found out. Despite this opening disaster, my disco entertainment was a big success that night - but heaven knows what the cake tasted like!
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The full review can be found in Pro Mobile Issue 71, Pages 40-42.