Gabriela Penn: “Afterwards, all I felt was love”

Gabriela Penn at her first gig at Manifesto
Techno talent Gabriela Penn started out with vinyl. She remembers her debut well. In 2017 she told me her story. Her remedy for nerves: bananas!

This post is also available in: Nederlands (Dutch)

Like many others, techno talent Gabriela Penn started out with vinyl. At 28 she met her partner, techno-icon Rob Hes. That's when she started playing constantly. Of course, the German DJ/producer remembers her debut very well. In 2017 she told me her story. “They say: eat bananas when you’re nervous. So I did.”

“I was fourteen when I started going to parties. Those weren’t techno parties but hiphop events. I grew up with hiphop and it took until I was nineteen for me to discover techno.”

Men’s world

“One of my friends played with vinyl. I was so fascinated by that, that I wanted to try for myself. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the courage. In my eyes, the techno scene and my education (MTS) were real men’s worlds. Therefore, I didn’t dare to take the step.”

MG 860 e97 Fotor 822x1024 - Gabriela Penn: “Afterwards, all I felt was love”


“On a regular basis, I secretly went with technofriends to parties, to feel how it is when people respond to your music. I grew up with my grandmother and when she died, I realized that you have to enjoy life. It made me think: ‘This is my chance! I can do whatever I want with my life’. It didn’t take long for me to order turntables and a mixer.”

Rob Hes

“When I was 28, the fun started and I was constantly playing. Later that year I met my boyfriend DJ and producer Rob Hes. Rob is my partner, my friend and my mentor. We talk about everything and now, after a few years, we can work together perfectly. Often people tell us how great is that we are a couple that boths works in music, but of course every pro has its cons.” (laughs)

15877852 10208421931412096 1761363984 o 1024x682 - Gabriela Penn: “Afterwards, all I felt was love”


“Rob taught me a lot – no not wat you’re thinking” (laughs) ” – what producing is concerned and I’m very happy about that. I still haven’t stop learning and I love new challenges.”


“My first gig was at Manifesto in Hoorn. I was thrown of the deep end immediately, because there were no less than 250 people on the dancefloor. I had prepared my set a little bit and was very excited. People say sometimes: ‘When you’re nervous, eat bananas’ so that’s what I did, all night long. I’m happy to say that the set went very well and I had been nervous for no reason. It was fabulous to see the audience enjoy my music! Afterwards, all I felt was love, enthusiasm and pride! Fortunately, I had and have many friends who support me. This makes me really happy.”

15878722 10208421931372095 3607260 n - Gabriela Penn: “Afterwards, all I felt was love”

Beatport Top 100

“After that first gig, many more followed. Among them were Elektroküche I Cologne (Germany) and Openmind in Italy. My first released immediately entered the Beatport Top 100, extremely cool! In 2014 was I runner-up during ADE Next (Demo Demolition) and Dave Clarke played my track in his radioshow Whitenoise. Needless to say, that this was a tremendous honor.”


“At this point, I play less DJ sets and concentrate primarily on live shows, awesome! This way I can give my sets my own twist. The music scene is perfect for me, because I’m a true night owl.”

15878072 10208421935572200 1176927757 o 1024x1024 - Gabriela Penn: “Afterwards, all I felt was love”

“One of my latest releases was on FLASH, Florian Meindl’s label. I’m super proud of that! This year I will have some more releases on his label.”

This article is originally published on on January 5th 2017.

Share This Post