Pride of Mississippi, Dixie Darlings hold auditions

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Makayla Puckett

The audition process for both the Pride of Mississippi Color Guard and Dixie Darlings has begun. Auditions for both teams took place on Saturday, March 23.

The audition process for the color guard is relaxed with the right kind of audition stress senior education of the deaf major and captain of the Pride of Mississippi Color Guard Haley Latimer said.

“We encourage everyone that has ever had the want to do color guard to try out and get the experience. We are always more than happy to work with people throughout the year to get them prepared for auditions,” Latimer said.

Group auditions typically last three hours and include learning a choreographed routine consisting of body and flag basics Latimer said.

Sophomore forensic anthropology Esmeralda Paniagua has been a member of the Southern Miss color guard for two years. She said she originally decided to join the color guard because she loves performing.  

“I love spinning my flag and performing a routine that I enjoy,” Paniagua said.  “I like being the visual to a song so that people can see the highs and lows that we feel in the song.”

Self-expression through music and movement is a common theme among those who audition.

“I really enjoyed the sport and how creative and expressive you can be when on the field,” Latimer said. “The feeling you get when you’re performing in front of hundreds of people is by far my favorite feeling in the world,”

Sophomore nursing student Morgan Lacoste said she loves expressing herself through dance, which inspired her to become a Dixie Darling.

“I have danced since I was three years old, and I just could not give it up,”  Lacoste said. “After seeing the Dixie Darlings perform before, I just knew I wanted to be a part of that incredible team.”

Dixie Darling auditions include performing a dance routine learned during tryouts as well as performing the fight song and strut.

“The audition process is nerve-racking for sure although everyone there makes you feel super comfortable and less stressed,” Lacoste said.

Dixie Darlings also offers dance clinics to prospective dancers where they can practice routines prior to tryouts.

Current members of both the color guard and Dixie Darlings say that they found their home in their respective teams.

“I got to meet so many amazing girls who shared the same passion for dance as I do,” Lacoste said. “I know all of the girls feel the same way too.”

Through the being on the team, Lacoste said she met many amazing girls that share in her passion.

“We love all of our members, and it’s a really positive experience. We really do create a family with one another and are always there to support and look after each other,” Latimer said.

There will be a second round of auditions for the Pride of Mississippi Color Guard and Dixie Darlings on Saturday, April 27.