Cheerleaders for real? For me they only exists in those teen American movies, until I met Janni Trinh in Shanghai, who was a 9 years national cheerleading champion holder in Denmark, what a legend! She was the one always on top of the pyramid and doing the flips and jumps. People would often say ‘that Chinese girl on top is amazing’, but don’t get fooled by her look, Janni is totally Danish, born in Denmark and grown up in Denmark, although she can still speak Cantonese from her grandparents.
Since Janni was a little girl, she always had the curiosity to China, where her root is. Last year Janni made her way to Shanghai for an internship in a design firm, it allows her to see how China really is and hunt down her family root in Canton. Now she is already back to her hometown Denmark to continue her Master study in product design, but of course I will hunt her down in Northern Europe in the near future!
啦啦队长这个词儿总让人浮想连篇到好莱坞电影里的那些青春热血故事，距离我们的生活似乎总有些遥远… 直到我在上海遇见了Janni Trinh, 一个很热血阳光的文艺女青年，很妙的是她连续9年获得了丹麦啦啦队国家锦标赛的冠军。对的，我说的就是像那体操一样考究的啦啦队比赛，而Janni绝对是比赛中的聚焦点，总是被众人举到最高处然后纵身一跃接连着漂亮转身旋转落地的那个女孩。旁人都会称赞道“看，那中国女孩儿真棒”，但她绝对是在丹麦土生土长的丹麦人，即便是从祖父辈那里学会了一口流利的广东话。
Below are some photos from Janni:
Words from above image:
Q: Could you please do a self-portrait in the box on the right?
Q: What was your dream when you were little? What about now?
A: In my childhood I wanted to be a successful and clever lawyer, where I could use my mouth for argumentation to put all bad people in jail. This dream has changed rapidly since. Today my dream is to become a good designer that can create valuable products!
Q: How did you get into cheerleading?
A: During high school, I first started to dance. One day I saw a poster about a Cheerleading audition, and I remember I have seen BRING IT ON, and thought it was super cool so I wanted to try it out!
Q: What does cheerleading mean to you? How did you keep up for 9 years?
A: Cheerleading has been one of the most important things in my life for many years. My passion for Cheerleading is almost indescribable. I loved spending tons of hours in the Gym to improve and learn new cool tricks – even though I as so sore that I was going to die Doing it for 9 years felt like no time, I have always enjoyed it every minute. This sport gave me the best friends and the best experiences + memories that I will remember for life. By being the leaders in Denmark for 9 years really kept me motivated and inspired.
答：在高中的时候，我是先开始练习跳舞的。一天我看见了一张关于召集啦啦队长试镜的海报，记得海报上写着“Bring it on”, 于是我觉得这酷极了，就放手去试了试！
Words from above image:
Q: Cheerleading is such a competitive sport, as a 9 years national champion, does winning means a lot to you?
A: YES! Or, I would say winning is important to make you keep striving to learn more and improve. But personally I think improvement and keep fighting for what you believe in is the most important.
Q: What does it take to be the top of the game in Denmark? Describe a routine day of your practice.
A: A good team – with excellent teammates that share the same goal and dream. A practice will consist of our team trying out new tricks we have seen from competitions or Internet. And when a trick is mastered/succeeded this feeling is indescribable – you feel perfect!
Q: Cheerleading is not a popular sport in China, do you think China is ready for it in the near furture?
A: It is a popular sport in some parts of China e.g. Taiwan. The problem is just that the cheerleading you see on TV is far from the real deal – so people misinterpret it. I think there is a very big potential for Cheerleading in China because China have great and very skilled gymnasts, and this is a very important element in Cheerleading. I would love to be a part of starting a cheerleading team in Shanghai – maybe that could be one more of my dreams