Here is the inside scoop on what the directors and judges want…
The Cincinnati Ben-Gals Cheerleaders
by Sasha Agent
The Cincinnati Ben-Gals have played a major role in the Bengals organization year after year since 1968. On the field, these ladies perform in front of more than 64,000 fans at Paul Brown Stadium. When they are not cheering on the team, they are spending countless hours practicing, exercising and volunteering for community and charity events throughout the tri-state.
The Ben-Gals have appeared at charity functions, conventions, grand openings, trade shows, and other charitable and civic causes each year. These ladies are young professionals who not only are involved in their own careers, but they are involved in many hours per week working for the Bengals organization within the community.
The Ben-Gals can add excitement to any occasion. Whether it be signing autographs, mingling with guests or performing their many dance routines, they are sure to add a special element to any event. The Cincinnati Ben-Gals participated in over 100 community events throughout the tri-state last year.
– Cincinnati Ben-Gals Cheerleaders
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Crowd Appeal: Within a professional organization such as the Cincinnati Bengals, it is very important to select cheerleaders that are appealing to the crowd. You must keep in mind that the goal of this organization is to not only entertain all of the Bengals fans within the stadium, but to also represent the organization by donating their time to community events. During the many pauses that exist within an exciting football game—somebody needs to maintain the energy of the stadium. So who better than cheerleaders? This organization is looking for cheerleaders that will make the fans want to watch them perform, as well as professional women that will represent the organization well.
- Do they look well put together?
- Do their face expressions entertain the crowd and make them want to keep watching?
- Do they look like they can serve as an ambassador to the organization?
Precision: Precision, or accuracy—when it comes to dancing is extremely important. One thing to keep in mind about professional cheerleading is that pro cheerleaders are really dance teams. Most pro cheerleaders grew up in the dance studio and are very familiar with dance technique. With the Cincinnati Ben-Gals, they are looking for dancers that can perform not only as individuals, but also as a team.
- Is their timing accurate with the music and counts?
- Are they capable of dancing as a team? Or do they stand out in a way that is distracting?
- Do their motions and dance moves match those of the choreographer? Or does the dancer lack the fundamentals skills when it comes to arm placement or technicality?
Power: Power when dancing is a skill that is usually universal when it comes to professional cheerleading—and the Cincinnati Ben-Gals are no different. They are looking for cheerleaders that can produce movements that are sharp, powerful and big! This is a must for the enormous stadium they are performing within.
Physical Appearance and Athletic Ability: I would hate to be a judge when it comes to scoring based on physical appearance, because how can you score looks? However, the reality is that physical appearance is another big part of being selected as a professional cheerleader.
- Do they look physically fit? Or will their body compliment the team uniform?
- Do they have enough stamina to perform with full energy for a 4 hour NFL game?
Professionalism: On any professional team—especially when you are expected to represent that organization, it is very important to carry yourself with professionalism. This means that you should appear as an individual that the team can be proud of. In most cases, cheerleaders are expected to attend appearances, thus representing the organization. This means showing up on time with a smile on your face, and being able to answer questions, or handle situations in a manner that represent the team well.
- Can they speak to an audience in a professional manner?
- Do they show signs of being prepared? Did they show up on time with everything that was asked of them?
Technical Dance Ability: Many people think it doesn’t require any skill to be a cheerleader, however, when they show up to the open call audition, they are often times surprised. Professional cheerleading requires an extensive background in dance. In most cases, you must have some knowledge in Jazz, Pom, and Hip Hop—NFL cheerleading is usually a combination of the three. The Cincinnati Ben-Gals look like they incorporate all three dance styles.
- Does the individual demonstrate proper technique with turns, kicks, leaps, etc…?
- Are they able to catch on quickly to the choreography? Can they perform the choreography after it was taught?
- Count how many cheerleaders were on the team for the past two years.
- Study the history and current football team facts.
- Make sure you know the name of the cheerleader’s director.
- Watch videos of the cheerleaders to study their dance style.
- Work on building stamina by doing cardio at least 4 times a week.
- Study current events.
- Experiment with hair and make up and use their current cheerleaders as a guide.
- Work on getting abs by using my fitness resources.
- Start looking around online for audition attire.
- Start working on eating well-balanced meals to keep your body energized–No crash dieting or fasting!
- Take dance technique classes and choreography classes.
For more information on the Cincinnati Ben-Gals Cheerleaders and their audition process, click here!