Jonah is the newest member of Clean North having just joined in January. Our crew training takes place after the Wednesday class finishes at St. John’s Bowling church in Bradford. I would sometimes come early to see how things were going and that’s where I saw Jonah breaking for the first time. Even then I thought his footwork was fresh. It was fast, it flowed well and I thought that he transitioned from move to move very smoothly. I could tell that he enjoyed what he was doing. Sometimes when I watch some of the younger dancers, they don’t follow their movements all the way through. They don’t quite use their full range of motion or they don’t know how to yet. This wasn’t the case when I first saw Jonah dancing.
I felt that he was someone to keep an eye on so any time a battle was happening at the end of the class, I sat and watched. Had he progressed since I last saw him? What was he going to do next?
Name: Jonah Rhodes
Bboy Name: Jonah
Age: 15 years old why
Length in breaking: 5 years
Style: Footwork based
Length of time in Clean North: 1 month
Why and how did you start breaking?
I started breaking in 2014. My neighbour and friend, Will, introduced me to a class in Queensbury. I have been doing it ever since.
What’s your biggest motivation in breaking?
My biggest motivation is to just get better and better. I want to keep progressing and that’s really what pushes me to train.
Who inspires you the most in breaking?
My teacher Lloyd inspires me the most.
What’s your best moment in breaking?
My best moment was hitting my first event in Sheffield called Break The System. Going out and battling there is something I won’t forget.
What’s your favourite thing to eat?
Lamb chops! Without a doubt, it’s lamb chops.
What’s your ultimate goal?
It’s to become the best that I can be. That’s the goal. Nothing less.
What DON’T you like about breaking?
There’s actually not much I don’t like about breaking to be honest. Obviously there is the pain that can come with the training but other than that, nothing really.
What do you look for when judging?
I like to see style/character and I look for the transitions between the moves. I like it to be smooth and I like things to really flow. I look for how the round is put together as a whole.
Does Clean North have what it takes to be the best crew in the world?
Lets talk about Jonah’s best moment in his breaking journey so far: Break The System, his first event
This was a big moment for him but it was a telling moment for us as a crew. As a crew, we are always on the lookout for new members. There’s no time frame in which we recruit. We just keep our eye out for potential members. It’s not always about the level of the dancer either. Your level can be high but if you have a poor attitude to learning and towards others, we’re less likely to consider putting you on a trial. Would you fit with our crew? Would the chemistry work? Commitment is very important to us. Are you willing to put in the time? Do you have the same values as us? In the grand scheme of things, does it make sense? These are all things that we think about when recruiting new members into Clean North. On the trip to Break The System, Jonah showed true character. This is when we started to discuss him potentially being in the crew. It started with getting him to come to the open training session on a Thursday at St. John’s Church. Being in the crew is one thing but we wanted to see him push his training more. We wanted to see more commitment in this area and he showed it. It was also an opportunity for him to become more engaged with other dancers in the Tranquil Productions family.
In the months that followed, the crew became busy with the preparations of Tech Styles (Bradford’s premier international breaking event). But the weekend prior to Tech Styles, we took a trip to Derby. It was the British Breaking League finals! It was such a funny trip. At reception when giving our names to the receptionist, he received his ticket marked “Jordan Woods”. This birthed one of his many nicknames. The crew love to have a laugh. We can have a whole conversation on the back end of a running joke. He ran with it all though which was a great sign.
The week leading up to Tech Styles 5 was hectic! I was down at the venue everyday getting things ready and we needed all hands on deck to get things done in time. Jonah was one of few people outside of the crew to come and help out. He didn’t ask for anything in return. Jonah just knew that help was needed so he was there to give it. This showed a lot to me to sacrifice his time like that but he understood the task at large.
I value these characteristics above a lot of things. Your level in your breaking can get better. But teaching someone to have a better attitude can be the most difficult task of all. This doesn’t mean to say that attitudes can’t change, they can. But it takes a special kind of person to be able to come into a family like this and have us feel like he was meant to be here all along.
Welcome to the crew, Jonah! I’m so glad to have you around and I can’t wait to see you grow within your breaking and as a person.
Keep up to date with the newest addition to Clean North via his IG: @bboyjonah