Spotlight: Orpheu the Wizard

Based in Amsterdam but seemingly hailing from another galaxy, Orpheu The Wizard has been astounding audiences with atypical and unconventional sets for years. As a co-founder of Red Light Radio, Orpheu is one of the most valuable backers of underground music in his native scene. Yet the Wizard has occupied this space mainly from the shadows, with word of his skill spread simply through the mouths of those delightfully surprised by what goes down in one of his sets. With close ties to the acclaimed Dekmantel crew and the Music From Memory family, Orpheu’s own DJing mastery has catapulted him from the darkness to further beyond those in the know from his hometown.

Born and raised in the Dutch capital, The Wizard’s musical and cultural beginnings as a child were heavily influenced by his surroundings. Five years older than him, Orpheu’s sister brought home the likes of NWA’s Straight Outta Compton and LL Cool J’s Bigger and Deffer. Living in a very mixed neighbourhood in the late 80’s/early 90’s where loud music was shared through open windows also brought diversity to his ears and kicked off his musical trajectory.

The distinguished selector has spent the past eight years creating a spotlight for DJs and musicians with Red Light Radio, a globally recognized platform regarded as one of the best. The exposure to such a vast reservoir of music coupled with roots as a record enthusiast and collector is reflected in his selecting.  The Wizard invites his audience to be as musically inquisitive as he is, with house, synthpop, West Indian music, new beat, and more all making appearances in his sets. Such versatility makes it difficult to pin down Orpheu’s sound, yet that is exactly what keeps him so fresh.

Celebrated for the breadth and depth of his taste and the passion with which he plays, Orpheu the Wizard’s eclectic style can have you in a state of ambient chill one minute and entrenched in the beat the next.  For anyone confused as to why record stores still exist, they are there so that The Wizard can continue selecting the ingredients for his potions.