Orthodox Londoner mics up as Olympian beatboxer

By Zoe Winograd, April 26, 2012

A 25-year-old Jewish Londoner is set for the summer of a lifetime - beatboxing his way through the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Daniel Brill is one of 300 successful applicants who will comprise the Coca-Cola entertainment squad. The ex-JFS pupil brings an extra dimension to the discipline - he is almost certainly the only one who combines beatboxing with a Jewish education.

Beatboxing is a form of vocal percussion, augmented by a closely held microphone. Mr Brill learned his basic skills from a friend while at JFS. Now, "Beatboxing Brill" is committed to using it as a way of teaching and engaging young people with Judaism. He said: "My vision is to be able to teach Judaism, not just using formal methods, but also bringing fun and excitement through informal means. Combining Jewish-infused lyrics with music is something which will hopefully bring texts to life even more."

Over the last three years, Mr Brill has performed in New York and Minnesota with prominent Jewish-American beatboxing groups such as Kol Zimra.

Coca-Cola, which is sponsoring the Olympic and Paralympic Beatbox Pavilion, is assembling the 300 beatboxers to provide entertainment for the public while they queue for events. The building itself is intended to double up as a musical instrument, which will vibrate to a song created by producer Mark Ronson, who recorded the sounds made by Olympic athletes while training.

After the Games are over, Mr Brill is hoping to head for New York's Yeshiva University to take a Master's in Jewish education. "You can be religious and beatbox," he declared. One day he hopes to have a classroom of Jewish students bouncing to his beats.

Last updated: 11:10am, April 30 2012