Ninna V (PRT): “Once I started, I got into the flow”

Ninna V & Marceline in Porto October 2016
Portugese Ines Ninna Ramada aka techno DJ/producer Ninna V remembers her first gig very well: “Honestly, I was a train wreck.”

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When I had to opportunity to interview Ines Ninna Ramada aka techno DJ/producer Ninna V about her first gig, of course I jumped to the occasion. Since then, we build on our friendship and, a few years later she showed me and my oldest son a bit of her hometown Porto. She remembers very well about her first gig: “Honestly, I was a train wreck.”

“I was about seven years old and went to boarding school. The kind with nuns. Going to boarding school was a kind of family tradition that actually came out pretty convenient, because I actually was a naughty girl. Since the day I was born.” (laughs)

Classic schooling

“This great piano teacher worked at that school. Every time I heard her play I was fascinated. So, after a while, I asked her if you could teach me to play. ‘Of course’, she said. As soon as I could I called my mother to ask permission, which she gave. That was the beginning of my classic schooling. In the end, I was able to play with both hands.”

Ninna V first gig - Ninna V (PRT): "Once I started, I got into the flow”

Portugese revolution

“In 1972 the Portugese revolution started. My mother is a Brazilian by birth, so we took off to her home country. Not really a pleasant experience for this ten-year-old girl. My brothers and I were bullied because of our accent and I was thrilled when we could return to Portugal two years later.”

That was that

“I continued my education at the same boarding school as before, but the piano teacher I knew was retired at that point. Still, I really wanted to take some more lessons. My father, who was a businessman, unfortunately had lost everything in the revolution. So, when I asked him if I was allowed to take more lessons, that wasn’t obvious. He told me that he couldn’t afford to buy me a piano and that was that. End of piano story.”

Ninna V 2014 680x1024 - Ninna V (PRT): "Once I started, I got into the flow”

Cais 447

“This all led up to my first gig in 1992 in club Cais 447, in Porto, Portugal. One of my brothers owned the club and had put me on the line-up. The club was huge and harbored over 3000 people. I was 28 years at the time so you can say that I started late playing as a DJ. But oh well, better late than never, right?” (laughs)

Transition

“I was terribly nervous. I was scared that I would miss a transition in between tracks. Honestly, I was a train wreck. Fortunately, I didn’t miss a mix, so I was quite relieved at the end.”

Ninna V mastertraxx 2014 - Ninna V (PRT): "Once I started, I got into the flow”

Techno set

“The audience was great. I was the closing DJ, as I was the DJ who played hardest that night. The crowd was expecting a techno set and that’s what I gave them! I had just bought the latest records, just like I did every week, and had added them to my flight case. Once I started mixing, I got into the flow.”

Support

“And yes, my mentor was also present at my first gig. He was one of the club-residents. He played before me and said: ‘Don’t be nervous, just do your thing’. My two brothers were there and so were many friends who supported me right till the end.”

Ninna V 2015 - Ninna V (PRT): "Once I started, I got into the flow”

Virus

“I loved playing in a real club with a real crowd, and for two(!) hours! From that point on, I was infected by the bug. I still feel the same joy and passion as I did at that moment.”

Resident

“I ended up working in that same club as a resident as well. That’s how it all started! I learned to go with the flow. The defining steps to play a great set is paying attention to the crowd and choosing your records wisely.”

ninna v october 2020 1024x1024 - Ninna V (PRT): "Once I started, I got into the flow”

“Being a resident gave me the experience that I very needed at that time. In discotheque Cais 447 I built the foundation for my future career, playing all over my country and years later, after the club closed, abroad.”

This interview is originally published on DJMag.nl on November 26th 2015.

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