First Ladies Drill team tryouts is a week-long process that was delayed until January due to COVID-19.
“Their week is laid out into sections, on day one, they learn a jazz routine; day two they learn a kick routine.” First Ladies Drill Team Director Kayla Norman said. “On day three the girls polish their dance skills and techniques that they are expected to have. On day four, the hopefuls have a mock tryout where they get split into groups of three or four and go through the final tryout process in the expected attire. Friday, the day the girls anticipate all year is finals day. Three judges critique their technique including flexibility, and pick who has the most potential to become a well performing First Lady.”
The senior officers typically choreograph the tryout routines based on Norman’s time limits and specific skills she wants to see.
“If girls are sent home because of close contact I know that that will be difficult for them, but as First Ladies, that’s just something they have to learn: they are going to have to adapt.” Captain Bailee Boyd said, “That’s just something that First Ladies have to be able to do; we have to make quick changes and do the best we can with whatever circumstance we are given.”
A virtual element to this year’s tryout is completely possible, but not an ideal situation. All candidates are in a Google Classroom with Norman. If someone or several get contact traced, they still have the opportunity to try out.
“The first time I was learning the dances, I found that it was very difficult and stressful because it was a new environment to me.” Sophomore Rookie Blair Davis said, “the best tip I can give is to know that you’re worthy no matter if you feel you’re not as advanced as the other girls.”