Born in the Philippines and raised amongst lots of different cultures, our Performance Manager Arnaud Betourne has pretty much lived all over the globe! Thailand, China, Poland, Hungary, Egypt - you name it. Speaking 6 languages, Arnaud is not merely talented when it comes to vocabulary, he also has a passion for other creative fields such as poetry and dancing. And whenever Arnaud is not busy rocking a poetry slam or training with the English National Hip Hop dance team, you might see him traveling the world, or playing around with crazy numbers in the L&J studio.
We thought we should give you some more insight into the busy break dancer's life with a short interview...
Tell us about your role at Larsson & Jennings. What do you enjoy most about your job?
Working in marketing, the role is all about understanding who our audience is, and from there, extrapolating & identifying how, when and where it is most relevant to reach them and share a message. I think the part I enjoy most is the closeness and importance of people? I'm fascinated by individual, cultural and societal differences and how I can adapt to understand and interact with people - my role at Larsson & Jennings, working from the store allows me to explore and do that.
Who are you outside of work?
I was told growing up I could be whoever I wanted to be, so outside of work I simply do that. I guess I'm a curious explorer - whether I'm dancing, writing poetry, playing music, singing or just cooking, I'll always find something new to try, or keep doing what I enjoy.
What does traveling mean to you?
SO much - I've had the blessing of living and traveling all over the world growing up, so to me, it means memories and experience. It's the opportunity to witness, learn, understand and adapt to new cultures, whilst getting to meet incredible people. Combined, I see it as getting a deeper appreciation for how similar we all are, whilst recognising the nuances of our difference and uniqueness.
Three words that best describe your personality?
Energetic, Loyal & Passionate
Where would you go if you could time travel?
I would have loved to be in Paris in the 20s - I'm imagining myself sat at Polidor or La Closerie Des Lilas with the likes of Dali, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Kerouac & Miller, whilst Paul Fort and friends hosted weekly poetry nights. I also love listening to jazz, and the idea of getting to dance during the Années folles with the likes of Josephine Baker - mind blowing!
Best movie of all time?
It's a tough question and my answer always changes; but I recently watched Parasite (a South Korean black comedy thriller) and it was amazing - despite it being in Korean with Polish subtitles...
What would be the title of your biography?
"Feeling at Home - Anywhere"
The most inspiring place you’ve ever been to?
Working at a holiday resort in Sainte-Anne, Guadeloupe. The isolated exposure to so much nature enabled so much free thinking, exploration of thought and movement. From seeing baby turtles hatch and crawl to the sea, to hearing waves crash under the starlit sky, the cliffs and white sandy beaches were unforgettable - words aren't enough to describe it.
Your favourite quote?
"Those who dance are considered insane by those who can’t hear the music.” - Nietzsche
"I was told growing up I could be whoever I wanted to be, so outside of work I simply do that. I guess I'm a curious explorer - whether I'm dancing, writing poetry, playing music, singing or just cooking, I'll always find something new to try or keep doing anything I enjoy."
What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
Whilst living in Egypt for a year after my masters, I flew back to London once a month to train with the English National Hip Hop dance team, with whom I went on to represent England at the ICU World Championships, placing in the top 10! The hours of "sweat, blood and tears" leading up to the event, the competition itself and the talent around was simply insane!
Your guilty pleasure?
I don't really feel like I have any "guilty pleasures"... I'm quite comfortable with everything I do; whether it's write cheesy poetry, eat pineapple on pizza, listen to the Backstreet Boys or watch low budget Indie series. I guess I'll have to get back to you on that one...