Compete in a one-on-one world final with thousands of spectators in a crowded arena and countless others watching virtually.
The result? Unanimous victory, of course – meet Logan ‘Logistx’ Edra, the youngest winner of Red Bull’s BC One World Final.
With BC One now in its 18th edition, perhaps it was fate that given her age, Edra wins the 2021 event, held in the Polish port city of Gdansk earlier this month.
Yet the path Filipino-Americans took to the top was anything but linear. Away from the romantic “love at first sight” stories of many athletes, a young and shy Edra – born and raised in California – had no intention of trying to break up when her father first suggested it. .
Somewhat introverted since her childhood, Edra rejected the idea of break – the competitive form of breakdance – despite her father’s suggestions. Her father clearly had a skill at spotting talent, as well as astute parenting skills.
He once took his eight-year-old daughter to what she thought was an after-school art class, and the rest is history.
Despite her relative youth, Edra speaks with the confidence and insight of a performer far beyond her years. She is also a student of the discipline – raised on a rich and diverse playlist of hip-hop artists and full of admiration for the legends of the station wagon before her.
Under the tutelage of his father – who broke up “just for the fun of it” in his youth – A Tribe Called Quest, Tupac, Nas, Lauryn Hill and other legendary names in the genre formed the backbone of musical education. ‘Edra as she started her childhood. dancing career in a San Diego studio.
Role models ranged from personal mentors from her first crew, Underground Flow – like b-girl Val Pal – to legendary “OG” Ken Swift and New York pioneer Richard “Crazy Legs” Colon.
Don’t ask him to pick the best ever. “There are so many GOATs,” Edra said exasperatedly.
As a professional breaker, she is neither an athlete nor an artist: Edra is an amalgam of the two – an “artlete”.
Thereafter, judgment and the resulting GOAT tag is simply a matter of subjective preference. “Where you come from, how you were raised and what you learned,” says Edra.
What’s in a name?
Logistx’s nickname is a nod to its love of structure and organization
Even as young as four, she regularly set her own schedule – follow her father’s name, with a slight tweak to the spelling “just to make it cooler!” Edra laughs.
Self-confidence, arrogance, and posture are as inherent in breaking up as the kick is in football, but Edra is outspoken about anxiety attacks – magnified by the isolating restrictions of the pandemic – who ‘she manages and seeks to unpack with her therapist on a weekly basis.
Despite this, after a decade of competing, Edra admits she “is still nervous to this day,” which is why she began to mentally prepare for a trip to Poland months in advance.
Three months earlier, she had attended a local cypher in Orlando, where the mere sight of a Red Bull logo on the dance floor had triggered a nervous breakdown. Edra acknowledged and then addressed the reaction head-on, staring at the logo until all the negative connotations had dissipated.
When she arrived in Gdansk the restlessness – unusually – dissipated, a sense of calm and focus made all the more impressive by the fact that she suffered a painful knee injury just a few days before the competition.
From increasing the heat in her hotel room to making this small space her “sanctuary” away from home to using visualization techniques, Edra has used a range of methods to ensure that she enters the stage in a hyper-focused state of mind: “Time for the game.”
“It was probably the first time that I wasn’t nervous and super, super nervous for a really huge battle like this,” Edra said.
“I knew I was going to win. I already had this in my heart. This is probably the most confident battle I have ever seen in my life, it’s crazy.”
Good girls end up last
True to her word, after winning her first two battles, a semi-final victory over Japanese b-girl Ayumi – “one of the best” – resulted in a final showdown with b-girl Vavi from Russia. .
As a relatively new viewer of art, it’s impossible not to be struck by the similarities to boxing – not just in the sense of physical demand, individual format, and a ring-walk style walk. “. but also in the behavior and values of athletes.
The arrogance and bragging of the posture, always underpinned by genuine mutual respect – this is an event that has all the components of a typical fight night.
Edra and Vavi banged their fists before starting their fight, and the fact that the BC One World Final winner received a massive WWE-style belt upon his victory only makes the comparison even stronger.
Growing up being “too nice” in certain breakup battles, Edra worked hard to incorporate the fierceness and belligerence of Miami-based thugs into her character on stage – to become “a whole different person, really not nice.” ”
“It has to be like that because you not only have to convince yourself that you beat them, but you also have to convince the crowd and the judges that you are better,” says Edra. “So in my mind I’m like ‘Damn I could smoke you’ on stage in battle.
“But once we shake hands, once we hug after the battle, it’s like, ‘OK, I’m cool with this person,’ you just have to let it go… I don’t take it personally. Some people do, but I don’t. I think respect is one of the most important aspects of hip-hop. “
With three votes in a row, Edra was crowned BC One champion without needing input from the fourth judge, then knelt down in tears as she was assailed by her fellow breakers.
Her success – the first American BC One winner, the first Filipino-American winner and the youngest winner – has only recently started to be felt. “Wow” is the word she uses to characterize the accomplishments.
Age is a particular sticking point for Edra as she is a double-edged sword. With that comes the promise of even greater potential and the pride of inspiring other young people, but at the same time, the danger of settling for less.
“If I limit myself to being good for my age, I don’t think I would have won,” said Edra.
“It doesn’t matter in the sense that you can always push harder and be the youngest to win something, but it does matter in the sense that it really empowers and I hope to inspire you to gain something. ‘other young girls or young artists to be like, “Hey, I can accomplish this even though I’ve not been on this Earth as long as these other people – it’s still possible.”
Break down barriers
Inspiring the next generation of b-girls is a key motivation for Edra, not least because it’s a historically male dominated scene.
She cites American b-girl Beta Rawkuz – one of this year’s BC One judges – as one of her childhood idols. Edra’s admiration grew out of Rawkuz’s tenacity in dismantling the gender barriers of art by constantly fighting b-boys.
Now carrying the torch for the next generation, Edra is carried by the prospect of a new wave of “still rare” female presence that could sweep hip-hop culture – both in break and rap – and what they can add to the scene.
“Go on, really go for it,” is Edra’s advice to stoned young girls and “hang on to that passion”.
“Don’t be afraid because there are going to be a lot of things that might make you want to take a step back. Naturally, we’re women so we can be emotionally sensitive, we can be more of the feminine side. It’s very masculine. , it’s a very aggressive dance.
“So we can’t be afraid of being rude or very rigid with our approach and that’s going to teach us a lot because I think, innately, that women can be more emotional, but it’s also something that we let’s bring to the dance.
“We bring a lot of creativity to the dance. We bring a lot of fluidity to the dance, so don’t be afraid to be yourself in the dance. Don’t be afraid to learn.”
Go for gold
After flying to another event in Los Angeles just a week after Gdansk, well-deserved relaxation and a vacation are the only items on Edra’s agenda.
That said, she already has her eyes set on Paris 2024, where the station wagon will make its Olympic debut.
Edra believes the athleticism and physical demands of the station wagon make it more than worthy of Olympic status and was initially excited by the announcement, although she wonders how her beloved art will be staged during the bigger sporting event in the world.
Dialogue holds the key, according to Edra, as well as the need for “unselfish leadership”. As in his own profession, “mutual respect” is essential.
As for his aspirations for the Games, you already know the answer.
“My plan is to win.”