German B-Boying artiste Airdit says the dance form grows by dialect and is constantly evolving and transforming itself and people around it
The best thing about hip hop culture for b-boy and breakdance artiste AirDit is that it grows by dialect. “It’s an evolving process where ideas are grown. This culture is so living and rich that it is constantly moving and touching people. Any other dance form is rigid but this is very flexible. B-Boys are not in a box. They can feel the energy. This is really living by having dialogue and growing from each other,” he elaborates.
Hip hop dancers in the city had a run for their money with the Germany-based dancer and power mover in the city recently to conduct a workshop and judge a battle organised by the Goethe-Institut. Here in the country for the first time, the B-Boy came to Bangalore after touring Chennai and Trivandrum. “People went bananas everywhere. It’s great to be in Bangalore finally. I’ve heard so much about this city. The energy is really good and the scene is really developed. I really looked forward to coming and meeting the local artistes here,” he says excitedly.
AirDit is people-oriented. “Even my name was chosen by the people. My real name is Ardit, but people kept cheering me on stage with ‘AirDit – the machine’ and it stuck.”
The Albanian artiste moved to Germany when he was just 13. “Being an immigrant had its ups and downs. But I settled in well. I was a skilled officer worker and finished college as well. That gave me the power to really believe in myself.”
Recollecting his younger days, the 31-year-old says back in Germany, it was cool to have a girlfriend. “My girlfriend’s brother Mario was already a cool guy back then and is still my best friend. We bonded really well when we took up kickboxing together which led us to become really good, skilled and famous in Germany. But we got bored. That’s when Mario took me to see a local b-boy crew called ‘Break Attack’. It was like watching a 3D movie come alive. The very second I saw them doing their act, I knew this was what I wanted to do in life. They taught me my first steps along with Mario with whom I later formed the TNT Crew.”
From there the journey is being loads of fun, shares AirDit. “I’ve being meeting with friends, having practice sessions and lot of parties along with discussions and deep conversations. From the beginning till now it is a big adventure on a really positive note.”
The hiphop break-dancer went on to do three months of intense practice after which he starting winning in battles across the globe. “I won in Germany, France, Mexico and was also the first German guy to win a battle in New York, which is the land where this dance style was born. I also did the opening show at the 2006 FIFA World Cup and took part in Got To Dance. I am CEO of my own urban clothing brand ‘Endless Wair’ and collaborating with Red Bull for the last five years. Apart from B-Boying, I also dance house and popping. I battle, judge, give workshops and organise events for the scene as well as pursue an acting career in the theatre.”
He explains: “People gave me the right opportunities and helped me get onto the right path. They encouraged me to achieve things. So from the Break Attack days till now in India, I am deeply grateful to everyone.”
Looking ahead, he wants to open a space in Düsseldorf, his hometown, for upcoming artistes and a dance laboratory. “I also want to continue dancing for fun and do more battles.”
At the heart of his dance is pure energy, he says. “The music plays a key role. When I listen to it, I want to give it a visual component. There is a real fire in me to execute anything I do to the fullest. I want to do things like nobody else does. Just like my fingerprint is unique to me, I want my dance to be the same. I cannot create my own art, but I can develop my own style and moves.”
On what he looks for when he is judging battles, he says: “Apart from all the right moves and techniques, the one thing I am looking for is the B-Boy or crew who can transmit the attitude of the ‘king of the ring’. I look for someone who is giving this attitude by smiling and really breathing the vibe. I also look for some little extras. Dance is about creating magical moments and I always look for the one who plays with magic in their moves.”