I remember myself back in 2015 telling to my best friend that i want to follow my dreams, to go and study dance abroad, to find a job relevant to my studies, (Dance Teacher, Performer etc.) to collaborate with artists from different cultures, lifestyle and traditions. Don’t get me wrong (a proper mainstream dream) all that together can boost your confidence to jump-start your dream. I simply wanted to make the habit of my life a profession. I wanted to participate in several international events and put my name in the map of Bboying (breakdancing) .
When i got accepted (Monday-May-2016) in one of the Top Modern Dance Schools in London, i immediately booked my one way winter ticket (Athens to London). I literally left my whole life back in days (work, apartment, relationship, friends, my Break-dance crew and family) i just wanted (badly) to do it with out really thinking the future difficulties that may arise.
Next station- Santorini Island .
Being independent and a life planer since i was an adolescent, i knew that i have to save some serious money in order to be prepared for the winter season in London. (If you’re Greek and need money then GREEK islands can work as a life jacket; not easy job, but you know what i’m talking about .) So i left from my work in Athens which i really loved (An N.G.O called A.H.F- AIDS Healthcare Foundation). Bar-tendering is calling; I was making Margaritas, Porn-stars, (not following the recipes of course ) working with my best friend behind the bar, wearing this sexy vests, flirting 24/7, thinking about the dance school in London and the future B-boying Battles. Damn baby life’s good. Summer season ends, money on the pocket tsin tsin ! Mission accomplished.
The 2nd of September finds me in the dance class of the school that i had been just accepted with an unconditional offer. And BOOM; during the improvisation class reality gave me a hi5, in the face, with a chair . I was thinking how will i manage to practise and combine my own dance training ( breakdancing) and dance school training(5 damn different Techniques ) , how will i manage with a full time job to write my future academic essays (so many of those -.- ) how the F£%$” i will be prepared for the future international break dance battles. Then escapism was flirting with me by giving me thoughts such us , ”Maybe i should go back to Athens ask for my old job back and just train with my Crew.”! You know, less effort therefore less drama.
London is an amazing town,(especially if you’re in your early 20s) you have the opportunity to meet people from all over the world, to learn about their culture, lifestyle, your mind becomes so open, i mean come on; One can say that London make’s someone to be ”available and present” in new energies, to think and move outside from the ordinary box .
London is not easy but strict, not cheap but expensive, you have to plan every step of you and you better be careful ; and this is coming from someone who is familiar with planing since 14 !
Continuing, 2017 and 2018 finds me working in 2 different jobs, 40-45 hours weekly (one extra shift in the bar per-week because i was sending money to my sister as well; she would do the same for me, love you little creature.! ), every day on the dance classes and lectures, break dance training, gym training, no social life i literally don’t know how i manage to do it. I Would be finishing the bar at 02:00, i would be breakdance training at 03:30, i would be sleeping at 05:35 and i would wake up at 8:45 to attend the contemporary/Limon /Cunningham/graham/improvisation class at 9:30.
After months i was so psychically drained but mostly mentally, i wouldn’t focus to any task, i would get irritate so easily, i was seeing my friends less and less, i was developing a kind of an introvert personality (nothing is wrong to be an introvert i’m just the opposite.) i was feeling sore and tired 24/7 but i would stick to my goals like a true soldier.I became cynical and really judgemental with the other dancers in my school, in terms of, i wouldn’t accept their advice as far as the dance training is concerned because they wouldn’t train so hard.
In 2017-2018 i took part on the Scottish and German Championship i manage to get to the final 4 B-boys (break-dance Boys). I took part on the World Championship
hosted at the beautiful Slovakia as a solo dancer ( made it to the top 32) and i was representing my county by being one of the five chosen members of the Greek National Breakdance Team. Okay where’s my biscuit now . ? Even though i manage to accomplish things in the championships, i wasn’t feeling any particular accomplishment.I just wanted to go back and keep training for the future championships, even though i was the same time in the championship with people with a common aspect that’s of its passion. ? However..
.. After a few weeks i woke up and i was looking the ceiling for hours , i was thinking if i really want to chase the break dance dream .(Mood Black and White) . I kept doing it mechanically, i forgot why i started it in the first place . So i literally stopped dancing for months and i was just working, i was going out for drinks with friends, i was feeling more relaxed, however my performance in the university was getting poorer and poorer , my nutrition wasn’t so healthy, and my creativity as an artist dropped dramatically . After a while i manage to balance somehow everything expect break dancing. I didn’t wan’t to hear anything about it, i didn’t want to dance in general,( i would prefer to stick a knife in the toaster instead ) i cancelled dance jobs, i would prefer to work in a bar instead. I wasn’t experiencing any negative feelings i was just enjoying my days, well at least this is what i thought . The phone rang
‘Hey dad , yes everything is cool, you know me wolves bite really hard ‘ .
I was out for drinks laughing, chilling with people who had nothing to do with dance and they didn’t knew about my background so it worked just fine for me. i kept doing this lifestyle for a certain time. W-S-W ; Work, School, Walks. A combination of mixed feelings hit me in the face while i was with friends in a traditional pub located at Covert garden .(boredom, tired,disappointment, scared, anxious, confidence issues etc.. ) I couldn’t understand if i was experiencing a burn out or it was an alarm to ” return back ” to my life. Anyway, recently i received an automatically notification in my phone saying ‘You have 134 days 23 hours 14 minutes 20 seconds for the World Championship. My heart started beating so fast .So i’m back on track , at least i will try to be.
This summer hopefully will find me with a BA graduation, an acceptance on my Masters. This summer hopefully will find me spinning on my head in Netherlands, Slovakia , Greece and USA. If not it’s OK i will go for swimming with my father . But i’m sure for one thing; i’m not going to push myself so much as the last 3 years.
I somehow realise that life might be easier if you drop expectations and raise appreciations.