Editor’s Note: What do you do when you really, really, want something, and people doubt you for it?
You do it anyway.
This story tells of how George’s classmates jeered his music, how he pushed through anyway, and is now DJing for parties, clubs, weddings and corporate events (in addition to running a podcast, I might add) — all while still studying.
Imagine his resume as an Entertainment Business Manager compared to the new graduates who worked at McDonald’s?
It wasn’t an easy thing to get to where I currently am, I would definitely say I had to work hard to gain what I have currently achieved. I pictured myself from when I was approximately seven-years old I was fascinated by the idea of becoming a DJ, even prior to that I was obsessed with music.
I remember being very protective of music that I liked too, my mother would continue to remind me when I was in the car sitting behind her that when a certain song would come on, and she sung it, that I would pull her hair from behind in the aim to get her to stop singing so I could listen to it without any disturbance.
When my family and I went to Leichhardt on a Saturday night to dine in the Forum, we would also walk past my Godfathers nightclub – and despite not being allowed to enter the premise, I loved the dark atmosphere, the flashing lights and feeling bass thump, through the glass windows. It amazed me, and still does, the ability to play certain songs and gain a reaction from the crowd, but it was songs that you also liked and were proud to play, you experienced a thrill from music you loved.
It’s like being a God – either that or a huge ego trip but its en empowering feeling.
Skipping forward a year – My parents owned a restaurant in our home town, I went into the kitchen and helped the staff with basic work such as cleaning the dishes or going to our downstairs kitchen to get goods for food preparations. I worked for a solid 4-5 years getting more experience in the hospitality industry and saving my money.
As I grew older I was given larger responsibilities, from dishes I would prepare food, from there I went behind the bar with my Father or Aunty and prepared non-alcoholic drinks and sweets while he would stand behind the coffee machine consistently making coffees and co-ordinating with myself about which table we’re starting with next and what cake or drink they ordered to then execute the order as a team.
When I was about 13 and starting High School I already had a job whenever I needed one or whenever my parents needed someone to come in. I started working back in the kitchen, taking care of the salad bar. It was a high pressure position as many of the food orders were either started or finished in that section, if I fell behind then so did the kitchen.
I learnt quickly to communicate with the chefs and floor staff but developed my mind to prioritise effectively so I could organise myself and be ahead of the order the kitchen started together.
Mid year seven of High School I approached my father in the aim to try and invest in the purchasing of buying DJ equipment, the initial answer was “No”, it frustrated me at first because I’ve had this vision for such a long time that I just wanted to start doing what I’ve wanted to do. I worked consistently saving up the funds required to invest in the equipment. After months of begging and constantly random facts about “DJ Warehouse having a massive sale”, we begun visiting the stores to browse what was available and getting the best available quote for what I initially wanted.
It wasn’t until another month later that I was allowed to then make the purchase “IF” my grades improved. I have never worked so hard in my entire life while in school to try and achieve the marks I need to get the equipment I wanted in that year of school. Come report day, I had secretly opened the document prior to my parents seeing it. From memory I rushed to my Mum to gain instant approval, knowing that Mum would also help influence the situation. Dad viewed the report and also approved.
I couldn’t sleep, I was filled with joy.
I know now that the joy came from having worked hard prior to being gifted and not the gift itself. April 17th 2008, this was the day I purchased my Pioneer DJ equipment. Little did I knew this was also going to be a life changing moment. I practiced and practiced and practiced and researched and practiced consistently.
I devoted my life to DJing, School and casual work at my parents restaurant. My dj name “DJ-Kosto” was also developed from my generic DJ George. The name originated from my last name having been to long as “Kostopoulos”, this gave me a brand to be seen under.
It was just unfortunate that hardly anyone respected me or what I did. During my years of high school, students didn’t exactly get on board with, they harassed me for essentially being something I’m not and labeled the music I loved “as shit”. I knew this was the case because it wasn’t commercial though I just brushed it off and went on about my day and continued to improve in what I love to do.
November 22nd, 2011 – this was the date I registered my business name in my Father name. GMK Entertainment was founded and run by myself, as soon as turned 16 I transferred the business into my name fully and further improved my business’s presence through Facebook and websites.
Currently I’m still trading under my business working as a DJ and technician for events. I currently perform almost every week as a DJ for parties, clubs, weddings and corporate events while studying Entertainment Business Management at JMC Academy Sydney in the Bachelors course.
I figured that even if my DJing doesn’t continue to be something in the future I can still put on shows and get the same thrill I get as a DJ, that being the fire in my belly after getting an excellent reaction from a crowd after a successful events. I know run an international podcast show via iTunes and other mediums that is downloaded and listened in over 40 different countries and downloaded 500-2000 times a week.
I make my own personal edits for all my DJ performances in the aim to create unique and unpredictable performances to stand out more in comparison to other DJs. There is honestly so much more to talk to you about my growing journey as an 18 year old Entrepreneur but I’d, there are still some gaps to fill up in-between each of the sections I’ve told you though to summarise, I’m George Kostopoulos, I’m and 18 year old student at JMC Academy studying a Bachelor’s Degree in Entertainment Business Management.
I’m extremely passionate about people and events and combining them together to create memories. I have an alter-ego as DJ-Kosto who comes out every time he receives musical inspiration or is hired for an event where he loses himself in the crowd through his unique song selection of the progressive, electro and deep house music genres.
I trade under my business name GMK Entertainment where I’ve been used and shafted by many older and more experienced individuals though have created a large learning curve that I’ll never forget while working in the entertainment industry.