How Affordable is the DJ?


If you have been planning a dance for your school, you probably have noticed that you are getting a vast range of different quotes from different disc jockeys. However, before we get into that, let’s take a look at some of the costs of some typical weekend activities:

Plain Taco (Taco Bell™) $0.79
Video Movie Rental (Blockbuster™) $4.49
Value Meal (McDonald's ™)$5.99
First Run Movie (AMC Cinema™ ) $9.50
Teen Dance Club $10-$20
Concert Ticket $25-$50+

Elementary Schools
Middle Schools
High Schools
College Parties
Video Dance Party




You will be able to find a DJ for $200 regardless of the type of dance you are having. However, if 250 students attend the dance, can that hired DJ service that costs as little as a $.79 taco return the best results for your school and make your dance successful and profitable? Let’s take a look.

Attendance at school dances varies from 50 to over 2000 depending on level and size of school. So for argument's sake, let's use a figure of 300 students for the following example.

You plan a fantastic dance for students and charge $6 per student netting you $1800. The DJ service cost only $200 ($.66/student) leaving you with $1600 profit excluding any decorations or refreshments. This is a wonderful little profit for the school. However, after the dance, you hear several complaints from students and administrators alike. Students weren't really dancing, some lyrics were inappropriate, the music skipped, used home stereo equipment, and the DJ had to work off of only 1 cd player for the whole night because his other one broke the other night.

For the next dance, you decide to keep the same DJ because you got such a deal for the last one. You did talk to him about music content and other concerns. The night of the dance arrives and only 200 students show up. You net $1200 minus the $200 ($1/student) you paid the DJ and other related expenses. You feel the event was okay, but nothing special while noting you had 100 less students attend.

Word spreads quickly among the students the DJ didn’t play their requests and wasn’t good. The 200 students at the last dance declines more for the next dance until eventually they stop showing up and your school’s dances are cancelled.

So what happened? Many schools fall victim to the cheap DJ service that offers a less than adequate sound system, limited or unedited music library, poor lightshow (if any), inexperienced DJ, or someone who is "just doing it on the side." As illustrated by the above example, hiring a cheap DJ service can have lasting effects on school dances. Not only can the dance be ruined, but also the fate of future dances. If the students weren't happy at the dance, they may not attend future dances affecting the profit level.

You can actually keep the cost down with the more students that attend. Some area high schools have as many as 1000+ students attend their dance. For less than $2 a student (remember, half the cost of a video rental), you can bring a full club-style atmosphere into your gymnasium. Only have 100 students attend a dance? For barely the cost of a value meal at McDonald's per student you can hire a professional, quality disc jockey service. How long would a hamburger, fries, and drink entertain your typical teenager on a Friday or Saturday night? Certainly not for a non-stop, high-energy, interactive 3-4 hours.