IT’S the reaction he gets from spectators that makes street dancing so special for 11-year-old Dylan Pilgrim.
And it is that special feeling of having amazed a crowd that drove the Drayton youngster to success in a European street dance championships.
Dylan, who trains almost every day, said he loved the energy at dance events.
He said: ‘It’s the reactions I get from dancing that makes it so good, and hearing all the loud cheering.
Dylan said he also had a strong reaction when it was announced he had come third in his category of European Hip Hop, Electric Boogie and Breakdance Championships in Rimini, Italy.
‘I pretty much started crying, I was so happy,’ he said.
Dylan said he had to dance his way through six heats, competing against the best young dancers in Europe, to win the placing.
He said: ‘They have about 150 or 160 songs to choose from that they can play, so it’s all improvised.
‘You have make it up as you go along and dance for about a minute, and then prepare for the next heat.
‘I’m a breaker as well, so I do all kinds of moves, backflips and hip hop dancing and and things like that.’
Dylan is about to start Year 7 at Court Jane Junior School in Cosham. He said his family and friends had given him a lot of support since he started street dancing about five years ago.
‘They were really proud,’ he said. ‘All my school friends are behind me and I’ve also performed at school talent shows.’
Dylan’s coach, Joe Sadler, said Dylan had the training mentality of a professional athlete.
He said: ‘As soon as we found out that he was on the list for the final six, it really felt like all the hard work that had been put in over the past year had paid off.
Dylan is now training for the International Dance Organisation World Championships, which will take place in Germany in September.
Mr Sadler said: ‘I am very proud of his success and feel that he is an idol to young street dancers out there.
‘In my eyes he is one of the best dancers on the south coast and is now recognised throughout the UK for his high level of streetdance.
‘I have no doubt he will come home with gold in Bochum.’