IT’S one of those over-asked icebreaker questions everyone has mused on at some point: if your house was on fire and you could only save one thing, what would it be? For Orene Askew, the question is not hypothetical. Last November, the local DJ returned home to the Squamish Nation’s Mission Reserve after a late-night gig downtown. While she was sleeping, her neighbour’s home caught on fire and the blaze quickly spread.
“I woke up to smoke and flames not knowing what to do,” Askew recalls. Without thinking, she scooped up her DJ equipment and ran outside, escaping uninjured.
“Instinct took over and that’s the only thing I grabbed,” she said, explaining the gear is not only monetarily valuable, it also represents her entire livelihood.
This August will mark one year since Askew, 30, launched her own DJ business. She spins R&B, hip-hop and crowd favourites at weddings, parties and nightclubs under the stage name DJ O Show and so far business is booming, she says.
A graduate of BCIT’s broadcast radio program, Askew has worked at a Bellevue, Wash. radio station, Vancouver’s The Beat 94.5, and Vancouver Co-op Radio where she hosted a program featuring Squamish language lessons