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  • Writer's pictureThe DMC Team

TIP: How To Win The DMC Open

It's almost time for the first official DMC Open, an open-format mixing competition that sees DJs from around the world compete for the national championship and a spot in the World Final in Paris, France. This year, The DMC Open starts its first year online and will look to find a few finalists from countries around the world. It's been a while since a new format has been introduced and the question is how is the winner decided? We break down the rules below to answer that question.

Starting June 1st, DJs will be able to start submitting their 3-minute qualifier videos to impress the judges with their ability to create a set that showcases a solid mix of genres, eras, and tempos. "This is a battle for the audience. We want the DJs to express who they are, but not forget that we are looking for the first DMC Open World Champion and defining that is based on how well they can represent the fundamentals of DJing," says one of the DMC Open Official Judges (TBA!).

The only creative constraint DJs are given is that they must mix through different genres, eras, and tempos in their 3-minute qualifier and 12-minute final routine. "The ideal open-format DJ can seamlessly hop between tracks while keeping the vibe going."

Regarding the technical side, the DMC Open is open to all equipment. The standard rules allow 2 turntables/CDJs, 1 mixer, and a maximum of 2 MIDI devices. Controllers and tablets instead of players and a mixer are also allowed. Who knows what the first DMC Open World Champion will win using?

Photo by Jeff Straw

What are the judges looking for? Music selection

One of the most important fundamentals of DJing is the ability to choose the right records for the right moment. "Digging music and finding ways to present it in interesting ways instead of coming up with new transitions is what we're looking for." says a DMC Select judge.


Does the programming of your set make sense? DJs are encouraged to take the audience on a musical journey.


Technically speaking, the judges are looking at the basics. Cueing, looping, blending, transitions, and cleanliness is important. This shouldn't limit you from getting busy! However, let's make sure we don't lose the crowd.


For the past 39 years, we've witnessed the art of DJing go through some ground-breaking transformations. Being original is at the heart of the DMC culture. The Open is a blank slate looking for original concepts. How will you stand out?


We're looking for a personality here! We know in many ways most DJs are busy at work on the decks, but if you're having fun, the audience will too. Delivering a set that connects with the audience will be the final element that puts your set over the top.

Read the rules

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