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from street art to the Olympic discipline

Breaking comes a long way. First perceived as a street art, practiced at the foot of housing estates, it gradually imposed itself in the great family of dance, until it joined the French Dance Federation and received the title of “discipline high level” by the Ministry of Sports. Ultimate recognition for this art of a sporting nature: it will be present for the first time in competition at the Olympic Games (OG) in Paris 2024.

Don’t touch my station wagon

But many breakers do not see this institutionalization in a good light, fearing a formatting of their discipline. Because beyond its arrival at the Olympics, breaking is becoming more and more structured. Professional training to become a breakdance coach has just been launched and several municipalities are investing to promote and develop the practice on their territory.

How can this change in perception on the part of the general public be explained? Does breaking risk being distorted? Robin Richardot, journalist in the society department of the World, went to meet the breakers of yesterday and today in Les Mureaux, in the Yvelines. In this episode of the “L’Heure du Monde” podcast, he tells us about the questions of a changing sporting art.

An episode of Claire Leys. Production and credits music: Amandine Robillard. Editor-in-chief and presentation: Jean-Guillaume Santi. In this episode: report at the Pierre-Doussaint dance center in Les Mureaux (Yvelines); INA archives from 1996 on the origins of breakdance in France (“The Circle of Midnight”, France 2 and JT Ile-de-France, France 3); excerpt from an interview with Tony Estanguet on the show “Sunday in Politics” on France 3, in March 2019; music excerpts: Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde – Genius Rap, The Break – Kurtis Blow, Jam on it – Newcleus.

“The Hour of the World”

“L’Heure du Monde” is the daily news podcast of the World. Listen every day, from 6 a.m., to a new episode, on Lemonde.fr or on Spotify. Find all the episodes here.

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