Today we have a chat with the 2013 1A World Champion and everybody’s favorite slack trick wizard, János Karancz!
Thanks for joining us, János! Tell us a bit about yourself, what do you do outside of yoyoing and how did you get started?
It’s my pleasure! Thank you for the opportunity!
I am 18 years old and I have just finished high school and I will start university this September to learn landscape architecture engineering. Sometimes I play darts and I have a banjo, too. I can’t play it yet, but I am planning to learn some good songs on it.
In 2005 my yearmates in school started to play with yo-yo and I found it very interesting, so I joined them. I can’t imagine my life without yoyoing and I feel extremely lucky my friends showed it to me.
What players were you inspired by when you first started?
When I first started, I was inspired by a lot of players including my yearmates in school and everyone I saw in videos, but the player who completely changed my attitude towards 1A was Takahiro Iizuka. When I first saw his videos in 2009, I couldn’t believe his tricks were possible. He showed me that anything is possible. Since then I have been very interested in slacks, whips and lacerations. He is my favorite player and I am very thankful to him.
How do you approach trick composition now? Are you still inspired by other players or do you focus on your own ideas?
I try to focus on my own ideas, but I get inspered by other players of course.
But I focus on using only my tricks/elements on stage and in videos. This is very important for me.
You are quite consistent even in your harder tricks. How much do you practice?
Thank you! I try to practice my freestyle several times every day and in the last 1-2 months before a big contest I focus on practicing it 10 times every day. I’ve been using this method for more than half a year now.
Had you competed outside Europe before? What were your thoughts and expectations knowing you would be competing against very strong and experienced players?
It was the first time I was competing outside Europe. I was very happy and honored I had the chance to meet and compete against the best players in the world. I tried to consider this opportunity more like an award than a challenge, but of course I practiced a lot and I hoped that I could do a freestyle I would be proud of and that the audience would enjoy. I hoped that the audience and the judges would find my tricks original and good and if I could hit them, I could get a good placing, but I knew that all of the finalists were quite amazing players. My main goal was to do a freestyle that the audience would enjoy and I would be proud of.
Does winning Worlds change the way you think about yourself as a player? What are your plans for future competitions?
Getting first place at Worlds makes me feel my tricks are scored well at competitions and I can compose my freestyles properly. I am very happy that I could achieve it.
My plans for future competitions are still to hit my freestyles on stage the way I would like to and to make the audience enjoy it. I also hope I can create good and innovative new tricks and that I can use them in my other freestyles.
The yo-yo you used at Worlds seems to have quite a bit of history. Tell us a bit about it.
Since I first got my blue Duncan Barracuda, I had been playing with it all the time. I used it at four competitions in a row and I got first place in all of them. I used it at Spanish Nationals, at Hungarian Nationals, at the European Championship and at Worlds. This yo-yo is still in that state, the way I binded it at the end of my freestyle at Worlds and now I keep it in an exhibition case in my room.
I wanted to ask about your freestyle construction. Although your tricks are very technical, your routine is neatly constructed. How do you approach building your freestyle? Why did you choose to use more than one song, for example?
Thank you very much!
I can’t remember how I built my first freestyles, but I’ve been using the same method for a very long time. When I create a new trick that I like and I feel that I have practiced it enough to put it into my freestyle, I replace one trick in my current freestyle that I don’t like that much with the new one. But I can’t put it anywhere, because there are some tricks that I must do at the beginning of my freestyle, because of the string tension.
I try to use more than one song and some sound effects too, because I think it makes a freestyle more interesting.
What’s next for you, are you competing in any contests soon?
I will compete in the European Championship for sure and I haven’t decided yet if I will compete in Hungarian Nationals too.
We’re reaching the end of the interview, would you like to add anything, or send a message to the readers?
I would like to thank everyone very much who has supported and encouraged me! It wouldn’t have been possible without your help! I am extremly honored to be a part of this community and I am very thankful to you!
Thank you, János!