At the Hilton hotel at the Philadelphia Airport, a conference room was filled with approximately 400 anxious, aspirant, females, ranging from 18 – 35 years of age, waiting to try out for the Eagles cheerleading squad.
April 14 was an early day for the majority in attendance, as potential cheerleaders were asked to be at the hotel by 8 a.m. for registration. At 9:30 a.m., Suzy Zucker, Eagles cheerleader choreographer, began teaching her routine.
Approximately 11 a.m. brought the first round of judging to a start as 38 groups of 10 girls hurriedly practiced the three-counts of eight taught to them by Zucker.
The panel of approximately 16 judges, including Zucker, Barbara Zaun, Eagles cheerleader director and Diego Ramos, Q102 disc jockey, watched as each group of 10 potential cheerleaders presented themselves and their dancing ability.
Immediately after the first round of cuts, each applicant was sent to a separate room to interview with the Barbizon School of Modeling. Barbizon and the Eagles cheerleaders are offering one girl who does not make the team the opportunity to still be featured in the Eagles cheerleader 2002-2003 calendar.
Representatives from Barbizon spoke with each girl and even taught her how to do the “model walk.” Aside from the opportunity to be in the calendar, Barbizon will be looking for fresh faces to represent their modeling agency.
At around 2 p.m., after Barbizon was through with their interviews, round two of the cheerleader tryouts began. This time, approximately 150 ladies were competing to survive round two in front of a slightly different panel of judges.
At approximately 3:30 p.m. the finalists were announced. 100 contestants remained to be invited to practice with the team, and Zucker, on April 22 and 24 at Bally Total Fitness, in Philadelphia. According to Zaun, “during each rehearsal, applicants will be evaluated with regard to dance ability, attitude, showmanship, stamina and personal appearance.”
After practice on the 24th, a third round of cuts will be held. April 30 is the fourth, and final, evaluation round, held at the Hilton, again.
The exact number of girls being accepted is undetermined, as the current cheerleaders must tryout again to maintain their spot on the team. Right now there are 36 girls on the Eagles cheerleading squad – all of whom could be replaced with new members.