I had an amazing start to 2016 where one of the highlights certainly was having the pleasure of performing along side incredible freestylers Jacek, Szymon, Mikolaj, Nina and Adriana, for ATR in Berlin. Some pictures from the event can be seen below.
This was a gala event for ATR who are the leading company in the selling and repair of car parts, and just as I anticipated it was a huge turnout of people. The venue for the evening was Berlin's amazing Estrel Hotel which is the capital's biggest hotel and hosts lots of shows and entertainment type events throughout the year.
For this event I got my own personal outfit on the day to perform in; all Adidas as always! Above is a pretty cool action shot of me just warming up alongside Adriana. Having a small room or space to ourselves to stretch and warm up with some easy tricks before performing is definitely a little thing I can appreciate, rather than just turning up and going straight into it! Taking the time to mentally prepare yourself before a performance or event I find to be incredibly advantageous, thinking about what sort of tricks you want to do but also paying attention to physically how your body is feeling that day, like if there are any particular aches to be aware of.
Of course before every performance I am happy, even if I am a little nervous it is because I really care about it and want to do an amazing performance, the best I possibly can! The photo above sums it up for me really, filled with giddy excitement once you are finished warming up and heading out to the main area.
Here we were just waiting to be called out to perform by the host speaker for the evening's event. If anything, this is always the peak of excitement or nerves for a freestyler but we were welcomed out to a great reception and the main freestyle show we all performed together was really good.
Typical reaction from people watching what we do is to pull out their phones and take pictures and record. I think judging by some people's reactions at this event this was their first time ever really seeing freestyle football so it's great to be able to show people what is really possible with afootball.
Here with Szymon (Poland) and Adriana once again. I remember we ended up showing off our tricks in so many different lighting conditions in this venue which was kind of funny for us but the main show in particular was a huge success I have to say. After the main show we later on continued to perform more freestyle tricks in a much more informal manner as a 'walk around' act of the event. It was really nice to mingle and speak to the guests there and they had a lot of nice things to say about our freestyling!
You might be thinking why would a company that deals in car parts and repairs be interested in working with football freestylers, like where's the connection?
Well the answer is simple, freestylers are a great source of entertainment! Not to be just considered as some kind of athlete that just trains very hard with a football constantly (although we do train very very hard haha), it is nice to be given a platform like these types of events to share freestyle football with others, especially with those who have not seen it before and I cannot stress how good the reception was from this one, I was smiling for a very long time after.
What was great about working with other freestylers at the ATR event is how we all were able to bring our individualities in terms of the tricks we do and our personality together. Szymon for example is a former world champion and demonstrated his crazy upper body skills while I recall doing a lot of sitting down tricks. it's almost as though each freestyler was able to bring their own 'flavour' to this event and show a wide variety of mind blowing skills.
This here is easily my favourite picture from the evening, striking one of my favourite freestyle poses here on the floor with the football on my face! As I said earlier the people who attended the gala event were super appreciative of the freestyle on display with many filming and taking photos as you can again see here from this guy.
All the great photos from this event were taken by Helge Mundt who also happens to be a good friend of mine. You can check out more of his awesome work here.
The ATR event was a huge success and hopefully I get the chance to work with some of those fantastic freestylers again soon.