No one fills the creative’s triple pack like Marisa Akeny. Born in Dresden, in former East Germany, she is a dancer, designer and DJ. She organised parties like »Cool Whip«, was a dancer at the Bundesvision Songcontest and was constantly in the charts afterwards. As a fine half of the DJ duo The Brides, she describes herself as a »funk ambassador from Germany«. Along the way, she has also played to support George Clinton and the disco troupe L’Impératrice. Under the stage name Femdelic, she has also been spinning fantastic vibes with great success on the turntables for years. In 2022, Marisa played over 40 gigs between the Berliner Biergarten and Frankfurt Yacht Club.
Dancing can be a great healer
Actually, Marisa works in social services. She has been running a facility for young women* in Neukölln in Berlin for two years. »I take the exuberance of dancing in the club with me to work,« she remarks in an interview. »After all, the party doesn’t have to take place in a smoky club and you don’t need booze either. Dancing can also be a real healer«, Marisa knows from her own experience.
Her parents move to Berlin with Marisa when she is four. They spend more than a year searching for a flat, and finally the family ends up in the northern district of Reinickendorf. After the fall of communism, her father’s technical studies from East Germany are not recognised in newly reunified Germany. While he returns to university, her mother teaches in a nursery. Marisa often spent time in youth clubs during this time. At some point she gets caught up in a breakdance and popping workshop. Marisa notices something: she can move her body, wants to learn more, wants to keep dancing. This is how the foundation stone for her later career was laid.
With dance comes music. Marisa swipes the first records from her father’s collection. »He had switched to CDs and either didn’t notice – or didn’t hold it against me,» she says. That’s how Herbie Hancock’s »Future Shock« ended up on the turntable. She also had Run DMC’s debut album and Harold Faltermeyer’s »Beverly Hills Cop« soundtrack spinning under the stylus. »But what I really loved was a ‘specially sequenced hit mix’ – with 60 hits from the eighties by The Whispers, Jody Watley, Midnight Star, The Jets.«
On the road with a record case
Marisa started her DJ career with Funkarella, who she met through her older sister. »Soon she wanted to organise her own parties, and that’s how our front-woman fusion was born in 2006,« Marisa tells us. When this turned into the DJ duo The Brides, the two of them founded a new event series called »Cool Whip«. »We were always changing venues. This made it difficult for us to build up a regular audience. But we wanted things to stay fresh.« At the end of the 2010s, the party series lands at the Gretchen Club, and DJ and producer Marc Hype joins the team. Suddenly the pandemic breaks out. »After that we just didn’t carry on«, Marisa says about the end of Cool Whip.
Marisa is now touring solo. Most recently, she was on the road with her album case in Denmark and Macedonia. The next dates for Germany are already set, and her Soundcloud page is always up to date. Before hitting the dance floor again, Femdelic recorded a 60-minute mix of funk and future shock for us.