By: Jaylen Rodriques | March 31, 2022
It’s time to take center stage. The brackets are set, and the competitors are ready. The fans are tuned in, let the tourney begin!
The NCAA March madness championship basketball tournament is not the only tournament taking the stage this March and April. The National Collegiate Performing Arts College DJ Championship tournament, which began in late 2021, has narrowed down its list of 32 competitors to the final 16. Among the remaining DJs is Florida A&M’s very own Gensen Supris, also known as DJ Zoe Crazy from Atlanta, Georgia.
Supris, a biology pre-medicine student, looks to survive and advance for a shot to be crowned winner of the NCPA College DJ Championship tournament, and bring home the $10,000 prize.
How it all started
To enter the tournament, DJs from various colleges and universities across the nation submit their videos to enter the contest. Then According to the Upstaged Entertainment Group press release, the entertainment company partnering with the NCPA, winners are determined by fan voting and a highly acclaimed celebrity DJ panel. Among this panel is DJ Immortal, Disco Mix Club U.S. Scratch Champion, Grammy award-winning record producer DJ Babey Drew, and Power 106. 1 Radio personality DJ A&G. This panel judges contestants by measuring the DJ’s technical skill, music selection, overall sound, and energy, performance, and creativity, then advances the best DJs in each round in a march madness style bracket.
Despite the pressure of competition, Supris charges forward, blending musical styles of the past and the present to a harmonic perfection for listeners. Supris began his DJ journey about six years ago, during his junior year of high school.
“I’ve always had a love for music,” Supris said. “I had an experience. We had a talent show and they put me on the aux. It wasn’t really DJ’ing; I was picking songs. But that experience, I wouldn’t say it changed my life, but I was just thinking about it for days; how much fun I had and how much I really enjoyed it.”
Since then, Supris’s love for music that he has nurtured from a young age blossomed into a promising young DJ career. He performs at around 40 events a year, intriguing not only young crowds by playing the hits they want to hear, but also shocking older crowds with his deep knowledge of music and his understanding of what each member of the crowd may want to hear as well.
It’s Nice Being the Best
The passion for his craft and the hard work Supris puts in did not go unrecognized by the NCPA. Supris is ranked the number one DJ among HBCU DJs in the contest, a rank his mentor and internationally acclaimed Florida A&M alumni DJ Ronald Turner II, also known as DJ Rtistic, expected to see from Supris.
‘I was proud, and I wasn’t even surprised,” Turner articulated. “I felt like, just seeing how he’s worked with these different crowds and rocking FAMU crowds along with the adult crowds who are older, it makes sense to me that he is ranked number one.”
That rank doesn’t go to Supris’s head, though. For him, this tournament is about more than just winning a grand prize.
Fighting for more than just bragging rights
For the winner of the tournament, the NCPA has agreed to match their earnings toward a charity of his or her choice. Supris has partnered with We stand Together Inc., a nonprofit colon cancer awareness organization whose mission statement is to passionately dedicate themselves to inspire hope and strength while providing support for individuals and families in the communities impacted by cancer.
According to Cancer.gov, 18,000 people under the age of 50 are projected to be diagnosed with colorectal cancer this year. Not only that, but the same article states colon cancer cases in adults under the age of 50 have more than doubled since the 1990s.
Colon cancer awareness is a noble cause to stand for, but for Supris, supporting We Stand Together Inc. is about more than just raising awareness.
We Stand Together Inc. was founded by Supris’s mother, who later passed away from her battle with colon cancer.
“It’s something that I hold very dear to my heart,” Supris stated. “It would be cool to win and have all the titles, but the money that gets donated to a good cause is a very important piece to me.”
DJ Zoe Crazy will face DJ G-Smooth in the spinning sixteen round of the tournament. According to a representative from Upstaged Entertainment Group, announcements are set to be made within the next couple of weeks regarding the elite eight round of the tournament. Fans can vote for their favorite DJs remaining in the contest at www.upstagedu.com.