DJ Kaitlin Hawayek spins music at 2024 Worlds

by Anne Calder | Photo by Matteo Morelli

Yes, indeed! That giant smile flashing on the Bell Centre Jumbotron belonged to four-time U.S. National ice dance medalist Kaitlin Hawayek. As the 2024 World Championships official DJ, Kaitlin was spinning music instead of twizzles. During the Zamboni breaks, fans of all ages let loose and rocked the Centre non-stop to K Haw’s music mixes. 

On January 15, Hawayek shared a post on Instagram that she and partner Jean-Luc Baker had decided to take a step back from competing for the remainder of the season and reevaluate options for future seasons.

IDC chatted with Kaitlin after the Ice Dance Medals Ceremony.

IDC: How did you get started with this activity?
Kaitlin: I started DJing about 2015 because I wanted to learn to mix music to cut my skating programs. I invested in some gear, and they taught me a lot about music and different aspects about music that allowed me to do small edits for my programs. I had the equipment, so I started playing around with it for a hobby, and it kind of unfolded from there. I fell in love with mixing music and bringing that same sense of entertainment to people that skating has brought.

IDC: Have you mixed music for anyone else’s programs?
Kaitlin: I’ve done my own. I mixed my Olympic program. I’ve edited some other skaters’ music before on a small level, but I’d love to be able to do it in the future.

IDC: What is your goal?
Kaitlin: I’d love to hopefully continue working with the ISU and do events like this in the future. It’s really fun and really rewarding to see the music inspire the skaters before they’re performing. I would also love to work with skaters and potentially be mentored by music editors to work on editing music for skating programs for the future.

IDC: What was it like when you came to the Bell Center this week to DJ for the first time at the World Championships?
Kaitlin: I had a sense of nerves. Absolutely. It’s the same sense of being on the spot that skating brings you. There’s still a creative aspect to it, but not the same as skating. It was really fun to be able to be encouraging the crowd to get behind the skater’s performances. I was really excited for the opportunity.

IDC: Share your thoughts on the ice dancing today?
Kaitlin: It was fantastic. It made me miss being out there, but I was so excited to see everyone on the ice and putting their hearts into their performances.