Breaking, once known as breakdancing, will make its Olympic debut at the 2024 Summer Games in Paris. For many athletes, the journey there began on Sunday in Montreal.
Spectators at Complexe Desjardins got a front row seat at the first Breaking Olympic Points Qualifier.
“It’s pretty crazy to have that in Montreal. Next is said to be South Korea,” Eric “Zig” Martel, National Director of Breaking Canada.
Dancers compete against each other in a competition called a battle. Breakers combine standard moves like top rock, down rock, freezes, and power moves with DJ beats in their roughly 45-second routine.
“There’s a lot of structure but at the same time a lot of individuality, style, you don’t want to look like anyone. You want to be your own guy,” said Jeffrey Louis, aka B-Boy Jeffro.
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The judges judge the overall package that the b-boy or b-girl offers, not who is the better dancer.
“You look at the diversity of the movement, the technique, the musicality, the creativity, the performance, all these little aspects of the concept are looked at,” said juror Luca “Lazy Legs” Patuelli.
The event is part of the urban arts and sports festival DISTRIX, which takes place in the Quartier des Spectacles.
“We wanted to bring the culture of 3×3 basketball, breaking, rap and graffiti under one roof because they all come together. Everything started from the same place”, Jo-Annie Charbonneau, General Manager DISTRIX Festival.
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Dancers who have been breaking for decades say that while the sport is not new, breaking has its origins in the 1970s, the event gives b-boys and b-girls a chance to educate audiences.
Before the sport makes its long-awaited debut at the Olympics.
“It was a 10-year process,” Patuelli said. “Just last year we received the official announcement that Breaking was officially invited to the IOC, which is huge.”
“Now that it’s there, it opens doors to many other possibilities. So I’m excited,” Louis told Global News
As qualifying events continue to take place across the globe, b-boys and b-girls say they can’t wait to turn the world upside down in Paris.
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https://globalnews.ca/news/9105633/first-paris-2024-breaking-points-qualifier-takes-place-in-montreal/ Breakers meet in Montreal for the first qualifier ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympics – Montreal