Over the weekend, nearly 200 women auditioned inside Arrowhead Stadium’s state of the art North Club for an opportunity to join the 2012 Kansas City Chiefs Cheerleading squad.
Following three days of tryouts, only 33 women will wear the skirt.
“I was extremely impressed with this year’s rookie talent pool,” said Chiefs Cheer Director Stephanie Judah. “The field of rookies we had at tryouts was strong and diverse. We’re going to have a great 2012 squad as a result.”
The 2012 squad will be comprised of 26 on-field Cheerleaders and seven Cheerleader Ambassadors. Ambassador Cheerleaders are full-time members of the team, however, their focus is on appearances, communication, and community outreach events instead of game day dance and performance.
The process of becoming a Chiefs Cheerleader has evolved into a detailed tryout schedule both fun and demanding. Candidates must survive three rounds of cuts before finally making the squad. As tryouts move forward, expectations increase.
Friday’s preliminary round consisted of dance drills, public speaking and learning two types of choreography (sideline and main routines). The first round of cuts were made Friday night before semi-finalists returned Saturday morning to learn production routines that would be performed during a portion of tryouts open to the public later that evening.
Another round of cuts came late Saturday night, following group dance performances and a runway show.
Sunday’s finale not only included solo dance performances, but public speaking tests as well. Each portion of tryouts is scored by judges of various expertise.
Each candidate is also quizzed on Chiefs history, NFL knowledge and general football rules. In addition, the ladies are photographed in uniform and in swimsuits, and undergo a fitness evaluation.
Guest judges for this year’s tryouts were highlighted by wife of Chiefs center
Each guest judge scores candidates in areas including fitness, glamour, dance and public speaking. Judah then selects the final team alongside Tavia Hunt and Chiefs Senior Vice President of Business Operations Bill Chapin. The process lasted into the wee hours of Monday morning.
Hunt has become intimately involved in the selection process, signaling a commitment to the quality of the Chiefs Cheerleading program from the top of the organization.
“Tavia’s expertise is critical for our team to continue to grow each year,” Judah said. “I’m thankful for her guidance not only during the full weekend of tryouts, but for her continued commitment throughout the year as well.”
The 2012 squad will be unveiled Tuesday evening through video highlights posted on KCChiefs.com. The team will have its first meeting on Friday to prepare for upcoming photo shoots and begin training.
The first public performance from the 2012 squad will take place in front of Chiefs fans at the annual Draft Day Party in late April. This year’s calendar shoot will be held in Aruba.