“If Menno joins the competition, the others get a little bit scared.” It takes one to know one. Moj Rivas is one of the judges at the breaking competition at the World Urban Games in Budapest. He is a legend in the urban sport/art form and he’s talking about B-Boy Menno, the dutch double world champion.
Menno van Gorp, as his full name is, is a 30-year old artist, painter, athlete, breaker. And he’s one of the best there is. Two former Hungarian breakers from the nineties are at the WUG to watch Menno. “He’s incredbile, he’s got so many skills. It’s fun to see that so many people come to look at the breaking, but I don’t think they recognize all the things Menno can do.”
Moj adds: “Menno is a freestyle dancer with calculated moves, while most of the others calculate to much. This guy connects with the music, with the environment, with what’s happening at that very moment. If you put it together, that’s extremely dangerous.”
In the final-battle Menno is up against Victor, from the United States. Victor wins. A deserved win, says Menno. “He’s one of the best dancers in the world right know. And I was not feeling 100 per cent.” Menno recognizes himself in the profile Moj and others give him. “I can create an aura right at the moment, that’s absolutely true. But I’m allready thirty, I have a daughter and a family life. The next generation is coming. All these guys have tot think of is dancing.”
For the bigger audience some of those younger guys are performing spectacular breaking moves. “In the near future there will be breakers who can turn 20 times on one hand”, says B-boy Menno. “I create my own moves that comes from within. The people probably don’t understand why that guy who can turn 20 times doesn’t win, but the moves I do are extremely well performed. Think about Picasso, he’s a painter who creates his own style, which makes him different than the rest.”
Bo Zuijderwijk and Kevin Alsemgeest, freerunners from The Hague, and their coach Mark van Swieten talk about freerunning (parkour) at the World Urban Games. Zuijderwijk finished third and took the bronze medal at the freestyle discipline. Watch the video below (on Vimeo). Discover the Games made it for Omroep West, the regional broadcaster in The Hague.
For audio only (and Dutch only) you can click on the button below, you can listen to it on Soundcloud. It was aired on September 16, in the morningshow called Muijs in de Morgen at Omroep West. For the story click here.
Freerunner flies over Budapest
The local paper of Utrecht (Utrecht Nieuwslad) headlines an article written by Discover the Games. Luciano Balestra, one of the competitors, talks about the sport and the vibe he gets from it. He is the owner and director of the Freerun University at Houten. "I want to pass on my passion for freerunning", Balestra tells in the article. "Kids at my university come here to enjoy themselves and I see them gaining self-confidence. That's an important part of freerunning. The moment you're flying is great. And if the landing is perfect: WOW!"