About us
  Welcome to our website and thank you for taking the time to look around.

OnStage is one of the most experienced mobile discothèques in the South of England today, having covered thousands of events such as Weddings, Corporate Functions, Balls, Product Promotions and Private Parties throughout the UK.

My name is Wayne and I'd like to share with you a brief history of OnStage, giving you an idea of where we came from, how we started, what we've done and where we are going.

My musical career started at the age of three, when my dad started to teach me to play the trumpet and read music. I would also listen to mum’s records on the ‘gramophone’, enjoying artists like Brenda Lee, The Beatles, Millie, Mario Lanza and, of course, Elvis. Being Russian, mum also had a great love of classical music which I also embraced. Just after my fourteenth birthday I joined the Margate Silver Band as a 3rd cornet player and worked my way up. For the next four years I played many types of music, from marches to swing and classical to pop, at all kinds of venues, including Wembley Arena.

At age eleven I also started learning to play the guitar and after a short while three of my school friends and I formed a four piece. By the time I had entered college I was playing in various local bands in the Canterbury area and later supported the likes of Marc Bolan and the late John Martyn. I've since gone on to train in classical guitar. In short, I now have a vast knowledge and love of many genres of music from all eras.

I started my working life as an electronics technician in the avionics industry. In my spare time, I used my electronics knowledge to design and build a complete disco console, including the mixer and light controller. The project cost me a couple of hundred quid, which was a lot of money back then. I decided to start DJ’ing to make a few bob, and since there was no one to learn from I did it the hard way, as usual. OnStage was born.

I eventually stopped playing in bands because I had loads of disco work and I couldn't do both. In 1977, the Queen’s silver Jubilee year, I performed 37 gigs in one month! In the intervening 35 years, I have performed at more than 5,000 gigs.

In 2010, my eldest son Sam, 15, became my permanent roadie and technician. He deals with setting up and running the lighting system. Like me, he plays the guitar and has a love of all types of music. My youngest, James, 10, has still got a few years to go before he can become fully involved, but he’s showing signs of a keen interest in modern dance music, and telling me how big and strong his muscles are.

When I first started this venture, I made a commitment to supply professional entertainment and give an excellent level of service to my clients. It’s a promise I made my customers that I’ve never forgotten.

Not Just a DJ
Back in the 70's disco mixers and equipment to control lighting were almost non-existent, so I had to design and build my own. The lighting controllers I built were ten years ahead of anything else around, this was due to where I worked. In 1975 I was given a spare experimental Z80 microprocessor which I used in one design. In 1977, I bought 140ft of trussing and loads of old par cans from Entec, cannibalising  them to make a lighting rig with just over 400 lamps. I had to control this lot with something, so I designed and built a 60 channel matrix control desk to run it. Over the next seven years put on some great light shows for many well-known bands.

In 1978 I got a job in London designing nightclubs. This work took me to many parts of the world, and I even did guest spots in various well known clubs like Studio 54 in New York. In those days there were no moving lights like we have today so I set about designing and building some. As far I know, these were the first two- and three-axis moving light in the world, which eventually found their way onto pop TV programmes and clubs everywhere.

Later that year, while doing a job in Sardinia at the hotel Cala de Volpe, I was in my hotel bathroom: the walls were all mirrored, so there were lots of reflections of me going off into the distance. I thought it would look really cool if I could achieve that effect in lighting. ZAP! The Eureka moment; the infinity mirror was born. On my return I designed and built one which went into a fancy pub in London. Some Middle Eastern guy saw it and asked me to design and build a 5m x 5m infinity-mirrored dance floor for his club. I took up the challenge and made it with neon and Tivoli lighting inside each section and designed a semi computerised controller for it. It looked mind blowing (Saturday Night Fever eat your heart out).

In 1980 I went back to working with my dad in the photographic and film industry and over the next 30 years the discothèque has gone from strength to strength, achieving some firsts in the industry. Here are just a few sin we started:
  • 1974 Designed and prototyped an RGB laser projector. Not being able to afford a patent and develop it further, I shelved it. 25 years later I saw the very same design at the Photokina exhibition in Germany selling for £750,000
  • 1975 World’s first microprocessor lighting controller running 64 lighting channels, converted to analogue control by home made 14bit DAC
  • 1978 Designed and built the first two and three axis moving lights. Designed and built the first infinity mirrors
  • 1979 Bought the first dbx500 Sub Harmonic Synthesiser and incorporated it into my sound system for some really serious sub bass. I still use it today
  • 1986 Sold all floor mounted lights and mounted lighting on triangular trussing spanning the staging area
  • 1987 Replaced old fashioned lights with spot and projected lighting, it looked amazing with a little smoke
  • 1990 Largest gig I've ever done, 16,000 party revellers
  • 1992 Developed a computer database to keep track of my music library. Since it was now mainly on CD compilations, knowing where the track was on one of over 1,000 CDs each with an average of 20 tracks was a bit of a struggle even for my brain
  • 1995 Started looking for a computer based play out system but without success, until in 2003 when we took out a license for OTS DJ and spent the next year digitising and cataloguing my CD collection
2004 Went 99% digital, although on occasions I will take out vinyl and CDs