Drop a beat in Castle Street

Jonny Delaney (Movin Music Academy), Mollie Gallagher and Mairead Hegarty pictured in the recording studio at Movin Music Academy on Castle Street this week.

Jonny Delaney (Movin Music Academy), Mollie Gallagher and Mairead Hegarty pictured in the recording studio at Movin Music Academy on Castle Street this week.

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Fourteen year-old Mollie Gallagher has her heart set on becoming a DJ.

St. Cecilia’s College student, Mollie, uses all of her spare time to practice mixing tracks and spinning turntables and she knows that none of it would have been made possible had it not been for the help and support she received from the Movin Music Academy in Castle Street.

Advanced student Andrew McGarrigle practicing in the DJ studio at Movin Music Academy, before his gig at Music City.

Advanced student Andrew McGarrigle practicing in the DJ studio at Movin Music Academy, before his gig at Music City.

“I know I am young but I have already performed live a few times. It’s all been because of Movin Music Academy and I am seriously working towards a career in music production,” smiled Mollie.

Movin Music Academy has been going for three years and it’s located at the very top of one the buildings on Castle Street.

Well known Derry band ‘Ports’ (formerly known as ‘Little Bear’) used to practice in the rooms where Movin Music Academy now is. The rooms might be small but the sounds that are created there are huge and the equipment and instruments are top class.

Jonny Delaney (aka Jonny Boy) gave up his full-time job with insolvency practitioners McCambridge and Duffy to turn the Movin Music Academy into something much bigger than it originally was.

Mollie Djing at the academy.

Mollie Djing at the academy.

“I’ve been running the academy for the last three years whilst working full-time but I have walked away from the job to concentrate on the academy and to do a degree. I’ve been DJing for almost 20 years and to be completely honest with you, there is no other place I would rather be - this is my dream.”

The Movin Music Academy offer accredited foundation, intermediate and advance courses in DJing, music production and promotion to people of all ages and last year the academy was heavily involved with the City of Culture Music Promise.

“It was an amazing experience. I must have worked with close to 500 young people. We used the academy here for all of our workshops and the young people really enjoyed it.”

Mollie and 17 year-old friend and fellow academy member, Mairead Hegarty, have been taking part in weekly workshops at the academy for the last few months.

Mollie meeting Annie Mac from Radio 1 (Mollie's DJ idol).

Mollie meeting Annie Mac from Radio 1 (Mollie's DJ idol).

In that time, they have learned all about the art of DJing, music production, promotion and have even provided support for well known Derry band ‘The Klameens’ in St. Columb’s Hall.

“I’ve always enjoyed music but I wanted to try something completely different so that’s why I decided to give the academy a go,” said St. Mary’s College student Mairead.

“We have done a bit about music production in school but since coming to the academy I am seriously considering trying to turn it into something that I could possibly get a career out of,” she continued.

“Not only have I learned all about DJing and music production but I have also met a lot of new people. Myself and Mollie didn’t know one another before we started coming to the academy but now we are really close friends,” added Mairead.

Movin Music Academy's new Music Production studio which is now available for Music production tuition and private rental.

Movin Music Academy's new Music Production studio which is now available for Music production tuition and private rental.

Jonny said he has been blown away by the level of interest in DJing and music production locally and he hopes that it will go on to leave a legacy.

“Money couldn’t buy the buzz there was around music in this city last year but I think it’s as strong as ever. Young people and people of all ages for that matter are starting to see that they can make a living out of something like DJing and music production.

“My message to anyone who has ever thought about doing something like this is to give it a go because you’ll never know if you don’t try. I can’t stress to you enough that the Movin Music Academy is open to everyone of all ages. All you need is an interest and we will take you the rest of the way,” he said.

Starting September 2014 the academy will have limited spaces available for aspiring DJs of all ages and abilities to take part in the following courses: Introduction to DJing, music production and promotion; music production only; DJing only and one to one tuition is available upon request. Private studio rental is also available.

For more information, to arrange a visit or to book a space on one of their up and coming courses, email: info@movinmusicacademy.com or call Jonny on: 07708525448. You can also check them out on facebook.com/movinmusic