Cristina Lazic is an Italian DJ who's sound specialises in upbeat house and lively techno music.
Her journey with music began at an early age, where Lazic began to play the piano at the age of six. As time went on, she built herself a solid reputation within the music industry due to her distinct style of tech-house tunes.
MITA Magazine journalist Memoona Ali, spoke to Lazic, discussing her shesaid.so panel, storytelling within music and upcoming projects.
MA: How do you prepare yourself before a performance, do you have a routine in place?
CL: Whilst I like to come prepared, I always end up improvising my sets and just going with the flow, by looking at the dancefloor and following what my gut is telling me to do, which will be based on connecting with people who are dancing at my music.
MA: Throughout your career, what would you say has been the best event that you’ve been a part of?
CL: I would say it was the opportunity to organise a panel for shesaid.so, the community of women in the music industry, just a few months ago. I belong to the parenthood committee of shesaid.so, identifying with female DJs when becoming parents, who tend to speak very little about parenthood.
Based on this insight, I have organised a panel where we invited some very successful DJ mums, such as Simina Grigirou, Francesca Lombardo and Davina Moss, to share their experience on the topic. It emerged that motherhood can represent a turning point in a DJ career, and more needs to be done to safeguard the interests of artists with kids. For example, when touring or coming back from maternity or paternity leaves.
MA: When you produce music, what would you say inspires/influences you, and how would you best describe your work?
CL: There are two things that I feel like pointing out: the first thing is nature. I love to take inspiration from any sounds that surround me, and natural sounds are a true inspiration for me. For example, during the past summer, I had the chance to be working from the seaside for a few weeks, and that was a great moment of inspiration for me.
I was enjoying feeling immersed in nature and exploring sounds that I could include in my tracks. That’s how, for example, I ended up adding the sound of the waves and seagulls in one of my latest tracks. Once I have identified these sounds, I like to combine them with drum racks, pads, and synths to build up a full range of sounds that should harmonically sound well together. My main and favourite genre is minimal, and I am a big fan of Romanian minimal artists such as Priku, Bryz and Ntfo, or the British minimal strand of Fuse London.
MA: Through music, is there a particular story or message that you aim to share or deliver to your fans?
CL: Storytelling is key for me when performing or producing. In particular, whenever I play in front of a crowd, I love to improvise and follow the flow of the vibe that gets created. I also believe a lot in the power of smiles: I enjoy connecting with the crowd at a musical but also personal level, as this is when the magic is made.
MA: In the current situation with coronavirus, has been in lockdown for several months, how have you coped and has it affected your music?
CL: Initially, the pandemic had a very hard effect on me, as I am Italian and Italy was the first Western country to be badly hit by COVID-19. However, I have somehow learnt to discover a resilience I did not know I had. I have invested loads of time in producing, doing live streams and participating in new projects which would have been almost impossible to conceive, before the virus.
For example, when the BLM movement started in June, and while events were still forbidden, I have realised a reportage for Magma, a web TV offering high-quality music content, on the contribution of the black community to the genesis of the house (in particular Chicago house) and techno music (mainly Detroit techno). It was interesting to explore the roots of electronic music from such a new angle, and I have to say that I feel musically enriched after the lockdown and the increased time I have had to explore new things like virtually meet new music professionals and explore the history of electronic music.
MA: Are you working on any new projects/tracks currently? Is there anything that you are particularly excited about in the near future?
CL: There is so much going on right now, so let me try to summarize the main things I can think of:
With some friends based in the Marche region of Italy we are kicking off a project consisting of live streams that aim to valorize such attractions, to help the local region get discovered by those who normally associate Italy only with “famous” regions such as Tuscany and Sicily.
Finally, when it comes to projects that sit outside of the DJing and production world, I am continuing to work with the shesaid.so parenthood committee to launch a new initiative whose objective is that of sensitizing artist managers about the importance of wellbeing for their artists who are parents, offering them a “wellbeing pack” that can make the artist's lives’ easier.
I am also planning to hold a few #IamRemarkable workshops, of whom I am a facilitator (as in my day time I work for Google). #IamRemarkable is Google’s global initiative that aims to empower women and underrepresented groups talk about their achievements in the workplace and beyond: there is still loads to do in the music industry in this field, that’s why I am planning some workshops for professionals in the music industry, which will happen between now and Christmas.
Feature Image Credit: Cristina Lazic
Words by Memoona Ali