All they can remember is that they were French, that they did some spectacular turns above their heads and that one of them "wore a Superman T-shirt." They don't know any more than that about the dancers they saw in the street of their town years ago, but if they saw them again now they would have a great deal to say to them. It would begin, "Thanks, for being our inspiration."
After following these performers for an entire summer around their native Torre del Mar, twins Marcos and Alejandro Ponce decided they wanted to do the same. They were only ten years old then. Now, at 23, they are the Impact Brothers, a duo that performs a fusion of acrobatics, breakdance, classical and contemporary dance.
We asked them to perform one of their numbers so we could take photos and film a video in an emblematic setting in Malaga, next to Muelle Uno, and they were happy to oblige.
After a brief warm-up they looked at each other, exchanged a few gestures which only they understand, and began the show. They are 'acro dancers', dancers with the ability to control their bodies and hold a classic posture after somersaulting in the air, turning one above the other and making a human pyramid. The scene took place beside the 'Cube' building above the Pompidou centre, and attracted numerous spectators who also wanted to take photographs. These brothers are aptly named. Watching them has a real impact.
Through practice, training and regular falls, they have created their own style which combines the tension of the impossible acrobatics of breakdance with the elegance of classic dance movements, performed to some epic music in the background. By March, in just four months they will have been to France, Greece, Marrakesh and Italy, after starting in Malaga (where they have performed alongside David Segura in 'Decisiones' at the Sala Gades). At present they take part in the shows put on by international companies, but their dream is to put on their own show and they are working towards that.
Their first school was the street and beach of Torre del Mar. It hurts less when you fall onto sand. After being fascinated by those French dancers, they discovered that a group of young people in their town were doing urban dance, and they joined them. They began to compete in championships - they have already won several with their group Floorlovers - and acquire professional training from David Segura (who today heads the Beyond Dance company).
Since then they have devoted their time entirely to dance, training at schools, rehearsing the choreography at home and now using premises provided by the local council in the Azucarera building in Torre del Mar.
"We have always rehearsed in the street, but now we need somewhere that isn't cold and where we can go when it's raining," they say. It can't be just any room, either: they need height, space and a good floor, because when your body is your equipment "there are always risks". However, the Ponce brothers, touch wood, say they have never been injured. They have scars, muscle contractions, scratches, bruises... "nothing serious."
They often talk at the same time, giving the same answers, and that also occurs when they dance, for good or bad. "I don't know, maybe it's because we're twins or because we have spent all our lives together. We often make exactly the same mistake at the same time and in the same part of the dance routine," says Marcos.
This close relationship is essential in a situation where you need absolute trust in the person. Most of the movements these brothers perform, the acrobatics and turns, are the result of combining their individual strength and skill. They say that when they started there was nobody to train them, so they just tried on their own, each using the other as support. "That's why we are so sure about what we're doing. I know who he is and he knows who I am. We would never let the other down," says Alex.
The stage performances by these twins attracted the attention of the television some time ago. When they were 12 they took part in the 'Menuda Noche' programme on Canal Sur; they have been on 'Tienes talento' on Cuatro; this summer they were finalists on TVE's 'Insuperables' programme; they have just filmed a commercial for a well-known company, due to appear soon, and they have another TV project coming up "but we can't talk about that yet," they say.
For them, television has become the best platform. "When we were on Insuperables the phone didn't stop ringing. People all over the world were interested in us, even in places like Peru and Mexico," they say. And as a result, they found work. At present they are a duo, but a young acrobat may be joining them. Alex's two-year-old daughter has already performed with them at times. The future of their business is assured.