Hello! I hope you all are having a great start to the week so far.
I don’t have too much time at home, but I wanted to go ahead and dive into the next subject regarding NBA/NFL dancer auditions. I realize this series only hits a small demographic of readers out there, but it’s something I have been wanting to cover for quite some time. I’m so happy to see a lot of you enjoyed reading my Food & Fitness Guide!
Today I wanted to go over what the heck to wear to an audition. Outfits are always something women stress over, so I hope this gives you an idea of what to expect and how to prepare for it!
If you’re planning on competing against potentially hundreds of others for a spot on a team, it’s never to early to put your audition outfit together.
You might be attending some pre-audition classes before the big day, which I fully encourage you to do if you have the opportunity!
Don’t fret about what to wear to those. Generally, you can wear what you feel comfortable dancing in, but I would be prepared for any style of dance (jazz, hip-hop, pom, etc.) and come with different shoe options (more on this below!)
I always dressed for classes with a base of a fun (supportive) half top and hot shorts. I would throw a tank and loose pants over that, and wear whatever I felt like de-layering to once class started.
You’ll want to look presentable during classes, but don’t worry about going all out with fake eyelashes and the whole nine. Wear your hair down if you’re not used to dancing with it in your face, and wear enough makeup to represent the look you want the coaches to remember you by.
My first year auditioning for the NBA, I sequined a swimsuit top from Target and wore a pair of my college dance team hot shorts. Although that outfit got me through the process, by no means did it help me stand out.
Do you want to know what does? Lots of color on the top and bottom anddd all the sparkles.
Seriously. The more obnoxious, the better.
At the end of the day, your talent and personality is what is going to get you the furthest in the audition process, but it can’t hurt to go in with a killer outfit, too. Below are my personal tips I picked up on throughout the years!
• audition tops should be sassy not flashy
Some buy brightly colored bras and rhinestone them from top to bottom. That works, but you want to be careful it doesn’t just look like you’re wearing a sparkly “bra” out there.
Sassy bikini tops get you noticed, but you need to make sure your top secures everything into place and that you feel comfortable dancing in it – no flashing. My favorite audition tops are padded bikini tops from Victoria Secret Swim or Venus Swimwear, and there’s no need to wear anything under it. I’ve learned the most practical style to audition in is the halter top, and I’ve learned to stay away from the bandeau.
Here is my favorite audition top I own in two colors that I used for two separate auditions!
• think outside of the “black hot shorts” box
Black hot shorts will blend you into a sea of girls, while a unique bottom will help you stand out. Instead of getting a pair of shorts at your local dance supply store, get creative by searching through swimwear shorts, skirts and even bikini bottoms. The Line Up is a great professional uniform distributor and can help you create your dream audition outfit.
Do you know a local costume designer? If it fits in your budget, ask them to create a pair of hot shorts or skirt that compliments your top.
If you are creating an outfit entirely on your own, try searching for full coverage bottoms in swimwear.
Or even go for a skirt.
• have shoe options with you
You never know what to expect at an audition, especially one for professional sports. You will most likely need a pair of jazz shoes and a pair of versatile sneakers. For jazz shoes, my favorite brand was or Bloch or Capezio you can find at any dance supply store or online. I recommend a tan color in order to extend your leg line, but the choice it totally up to you.
(Try Discount Dance Supply!)
It’s always a good idea to come prepared with sneakers, too. If the audition calls for a hip-hop routine, you might want to change into your sneaks to get in the groove.
Bring along a pair of shoes you feel comfortable moving around in (cross trainers vs. running shoes) or even go for a funky high top.
Reebok UR Mid-Lead Sneakers (similar)
I always found great deals at outlet stores like Nike, Adidas, and online at Pastry.
• bring coverups you can dance in
You might be invited to put on a pair of sweat pants or something looser than a half top and boy shorts for part of the audition. I always arrived in a pair of sweats I could dance in, a loose tank that matched my audition outfit, and a zip-up I could easily throw over my top if I got cold.
Most dancers know the brand Nappy Tabs.
I absolutely love their line of sweats and cover ups.
Alternatively, you could go for leggings, but sweats are a lot easier to just throw on top of your shorts and go!
• wear tights, or don’t. (It’s up to you!)
Most teams give you the option to wear tights or not at the audition. I wore nude fishnets throughout all of my years while dancing with the Orlando Magic, and they were what I always felt the most comfortable in.
Just like your top, you want to feel comfortable in what you’re wearing so this one’s really up to you. You could even get fishnets with rhinestoned seems, if you’re looking for extra sparkle.
• if you accessorize, make sure nothing is going to fall off of you
There’s no such thing as “too much bling” at an audition, however, a flying bracelet across the room could be very distracting. You don’t want to be that girl. Accessorize with belts, bracelets, earrings, rings and even hair bling if you feel secure about them staying in place!
Pull accent colors from your outfit, or accent with crystal rhinestones:
I found my sparkly hoops at ALDO, but you can find rhinestone earrings, bracelets and rings at accessory stores or even lingerie boutiques like Fredrick’s.
My Audition Outfits:
Pistons Dancers 2012
Orlando Magic Dancers 2007-2011
As you progress into more rounds, they might ask you to come prepared for a formal interview that you would dress in typical business attire for, and you might even need a cocktail dress for Finals.
It all depends on the team and what they have in store for their audition week!
If you are auditioning for a professional dance team or know someone who is, I hope this helped you get an idea of what to wear to it. Every team is different, and some hopefuls dress up a lot more than others. I come from Orlando, where the more original and creative your outfit is, the more you stand out!
Please feel free to comment or email me with specific questions!
I have a busy afternoon at the gym on the horizon, followed by a trip down to Detroit, so I will see you guys back here tomorrow morning. Happy Tuesday!
I find these posts so interesting… I am not auditioning for the NBA/NFL, but I cheered/danced all throughout high school, and would love to cheer in college. However, I never had to worry about what I wore, and we were most definitely NOT allowed to wear jewelry or crop tops, so it’s interesting to hear that how you present yourself was such a big part of your audition process… I would love to hear more about the actual audition process, and what skills were most important to have… keep the posts coming! 🙂
Sending this one to my sis too! These are helpful!
Lauren @ The Bikini Experiment
These posts are really fun to read! I auditioned for a lot of theatre and film roles, but the process was so different. It’s interesting as a comparison and also to see all the pieces of the puzzle you had to put together to look your best possible. Thanks for sharing!
I love reading these posts too! Honestly–just reading them makes me so anxious–lol. I hate hate hate auditioning!! It’s the worst. As a figure skater and dancer growing up–auditioning was my life. I remember having to audition for the annual Nutcracker Ice show–and it was just so damn nervwracking! Then in high school I auditioned for various dance teams and companies but never had any luck. Its just so competitive! And also I was very overweight and chubby as a teen so I had that working against me. You look absolutely amazing though! I love your outfits!
Julia @ Lord Still Loves Me
I find these posts SO interesting! Though, I will never attend an audition of this magnitude, I love getting the scoop on what you went through to be a professional dancer!
Thanks so much for reading, Julia!
My roommate just tried out for (and made!) the Orlando Magic dance team! It actually make me think of you and revisit your blog, so to find this post is ironic 🙂 Love your blog and excited to catch up! xo
Oh my gosh, CONGRATULATIONS Julie! That’s so amazing. You are going to have the absolute time of your life. Dancing for the Magic was, hands down, the best four years of my life (so far)! Please give Mama J and Cherie big hugs for me, and thanks so much for reading! 🙂
I am auditioning for a few different teams in February! If you are looking to sell your audition outfit (green and pink) let me know! LOVE IT and I think it could work for me – firstname.lastname@example.org
Very helpful blog post it is indeed and I really enjoyed reading this post. Yes it’s a true about clothing girls always feels stress out, and here provided outfitting tips are so effective to get good ideas regarding how to prepare for NBA and NFL dancer audition. Thanks for the great job.
Awesome Mallory, thanks for reading! Good luck during your auditions!
Going to be trying out for the ATL falcons cheerleading for my first time, have been wanting to do it for awhile, but my background is only cheerleading or competitive cheerleading no dancing, so I’m extremely nervous and your blog has helped me get in the process of what to wear and need to stand out. In competitive cheerleading it’s the bigger the bow the more you stand out haha so thank you for this post!
Haha I guess it depends on the team too, but from what I’ve noticed around the league… the “bigger the bow” the better. You want to stand out! Good luck to you and your audition!
I’m also going to be trying out for the Falcons Cheerleading team! Reading this seriously couldn’t have come at a better time; I’m trying to start shopping now to help ease my nerves a little. I danced for 17 years and was on a college dance team as well, but it’s been 2 years so I’m a little rusty 🙂
Thank you sooo much for this great post! You’re beautiful!
Hi! Thanks for this post! I’ll be auditioning for the Detroit Lions Cheer team next week, so your post helps a lot! I see you’re in the area too.. I’d love to chat with you and kind of pick your brain on tips and tricks and maybe great places to shop for my outfit. Thank you so much!
Hi Shanell! Good luck with your auditions. Have fun and SMILE! 🙂 I actually live in New York City now, but wish you all the best!
Thank you so much for this post! I’m auditioning for the Oklahoma City Thunder Girls on the 30th and was completely lost on what to do for my outfit to stand out! This helped a lot!
That’s awesome, Kailan! Best of luck to you!