This past Thursday, the St. Louis Rams Cheerleaders held their final auditions at The Pageant theater in The Loop. 50 finalists were competing for one of 32 coveted spots on the team. The evening’s festivities would include an interview portion, a swimsuit segment and a final dance routine. And I was fortunate to be there once again to capture all the excitement.
I might have said this in the past, but the St. Louis Rams Cheerleaders final auditions are one of my favorite events to cover. The venue is a great place to shoot. The Rams staff (Keely, Christa, Clint…uh…umm…Rampage) is nice and they are very accommodating. And the girls are beautiful. There definitely is a distinctive Midwest girl look that these girls exude.
Before the finals began, I caught up with two of the judges backstage that I had gotten to know the past few years. You may know them as two of the most prominent people in professional cheerleading: choreographer John Peters and designer Angela King Twitero, who coincidentally designed the Rams Cheerleaders uniform.
At 6:3o pm, the finals began with a performance of the Junior Rams Cheerleaders under the guidance of Chelsea and Kayla.
At the conclusion of the Junior Rams Cheerleaders performance, the first of three final events began.
The Interview Portion
Rampage escorted the final candidates up to the microphone, where they were asked a series of informal questions to demonstrate their conversational skills and showcase their personality. This portion of the final auditions would be a good gauge of their public speaking skills, one of the most important requirements of an NFL cheerleader.
The Swimsuit Portion
Upon conclusion of their interviews, the girls were quickly ushered upstairs to the dressing room to change into their swimsuits. A healthy and fit physique is a requirement of the job and although wearing a two piece bikini may be intimidating, the swimsuit portion allows the judges to evaluate each candidate on their fitness levels.
The Dance Portion
The final test of evening was the dance segment, where the girls had one final opportunity to make a lasting impression by demonstrating their dance ability and showmanship. Girls were brought to the stage in pairs and worked the entire floor with a variety of spins, kicks, and leaps. The John Peters choreographed routine would be a good test to evaluate the relative merits of each candidate.
After the last pair exited the stage, a brief interlude ensued where the judges scores were tabulated and combined with previous judging segments held the prior week. Within a short time, the results were in and the stage was set to introduce the select few…those who would be anointed a 2015 St. Louis Rams Cheerleader.
Those girls who were selected were escorted onto the stage by Clint…uh…umm…Rampage and given a pink jacket by coach and former St. Louis Rams Cheerleader Christa Range. For most of the girls, making the team was an emotional experience as one could imagine. It is the culmination of many hours of work and, perhaps, years of dedication to a lofty goal.
Introducing the 2015 St. Louis Rams Cheerleaders…working it!
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I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Keely Fimbres, Director of Special Events, and the St. Louis Rams for once again allowing me to cover their final auditions. I had a wonderful time and hope to be back next year.