Hot on the heels of his recent 5A May Torque video, Filipino wonderboy Bryan Jardin has agreed to answer a few questions about his 5A philosophy and yo-yo experience. With multiple championships under his belt at both Philippine Nationals & the Asian Pacific Yo-yo contest, he has already proven himself to be a formidable force on the Asian competitive scene, and a podium finish at the Bay Area Classic suggests that he has not slowed down upon moving to the US. In addition to being a great player, Bryan is well-known for his energetic off-stage antics and his huge smile. Pull up a chair and learn a little about the man behind the tricks.
How did you get started in yo-yoing?
I started yo-yoing when I was 9 years old, around the time that the Super Yo-yo scene crashed in the Philippines. Everyone had a yoyo. To make the long story short, Edmund San Antonio ( Duncan Crew Philippines ) introduced me to the advanced tricks, and I thought it was the coolest thing that I’d seen in my whole life. So he made me buy a ball bearing yoyo. I learned the tricks really quick because I’m into it. I tried competing for Basic, Intermediate and Advance- freestyle but I ended up losing. But I don’t care, I had fun! . Yoyoing helps me to build my confidence in the outside world, I’ve met a lot of friends and learned a lot of things in life.
Who are some of your favorite players & biggest influences?
Many of my favorite yo-yo players are old school players. Steve Brown, Rafael Matsunaga, Kohta, Yuuki Spencer, Sebby, Paul Escolar, Gary Longoria and Spencer Berry. I still look up to them.
For new rising star yoyo players, I like Michael Kurti, Isaac Sams, Andrew Maider, and Janos Karancz,
3. How do you generally create your tricks & combos?
I usually use 1A mounts for my 5A combos. I’ll create a lot of mini-tricks and put them together, I always make sure that the flow is right and I don’t usually care about technical. If I can’t come up with new tricks, I look back to the old 5A tricks, but I’ll add more style and put it in a competitive way.
4. You’re known in the community for your high energy both on and off the stage. What was the most fun you’ve ever had at a yo-yo contest?
Hahaha! This always happens, so I’m kind of used to it… After Sean Perez’s Freestyle, people will congratulate me because they think that I’m Sean. One time, a kid ran up wanting to hug me, take a picture and get my signature. I find it so funny because I always hang out with him and we both have the same Duncan Shirts. Brothers!!
5. You’re doing a great job showing off yo-yoing for Duncan at Downtown Disney. Is it more fun to perform for non-players who are impressed by everything or yoyoers who appreciate the technical difficulty of what you do?
For Non-players, I rarely do competition/technical/difficult tricks for them because even though it looks good, they don’t really understand it. Haha! One thing I like for the non-player crowd is to teach them tricks, I find it more fun and exciting.
I really like showing my tricks to yoyoers because at least they can understand the difficulty, style, flow and smoothness of my tricks. And if they like it, it gives me more hope to create new tricks!
6. What’s your favorite 5A trick of all time, and why?
My favorite 5A tricks are body tricks and aerials, because my definition of 5A is the counterweight/string/yoyo is away from me. I like it when I can add aerial moves and move the yoyo around my body.
7. You recently placed at BAC and have a history of strong performances at AP. How are American contests different from contests in Asia?
I’ve been competing in Asia for years and years, so I do tricks that fit to Asian Contests, which is more speed+technical. Here in the US, they focus more on style+flow+technical, which I find way easier to compete in, and I feel that this is were I belong when it comes to contest. I mostly like American 5A players because I can see the tricks whenever they freestyle, it’s much clearer. I really do appreciate a routine with good flow and not so fast. In my opinion, fast tricks are too robotic, especially for 5A.
8. What’s your favorite nickname for Brandon Jackson?
Haha! Before I answer this question, I would like to describe him. Brandon is Impossible. I think he is a walking Google, he knows everything! Brandon is a really good higher up and a friend… I always call him boss, because he is actually my boss! But I really want to call him BJ, Because we have the same acronym, I’m BJ too!
9. How do you plan your freestyles?
I plan my freestyle first before picking a song. I divide my freestyle into three pieces. It’ll help me to compress my freestyle so I can put more tricks in. It’s a little bit risky because I ended up putting a lot of tricks, and I don’t have spare time if I make a mistake. But that’s how I roll, I’ll go big or go home.
10. What do you think is going to be the biggest yo-yo trend of 2015?
I 2015 will be the battle of young yoyo players, they’re so crazy and innovative. I think kids will dominate the big stages in 2015. Old yoyo players will be history.
Any closing bits of advice?
For the kids out there dreaming of becoming a sponsored player:
- Be yourself
- Know your roots
- Be a role model to others
- Be creative and Innovative
- Be friendly, don’t act like a superstar
- Be active in contests
- Original Tricks are always the best tricks
- Enjoy what you do
Once you’ve learn how to do these things, companies will find you!