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The HEAT is on: New Miami HEAT Dancers announced for 2013-2014 season

After a grueling week of auditions, there's no doubt these positions were earned, not given.

The 2013-2014 Miami HEAT Dancers have been selected. The auditions started last Sunday at the American Airlines Arena and ended with the finals on Friday at the Miami-Dade County Auditorium. As always, veteran dancers had to prove themselves and were thrown into the mix with brand new hopefuls from all over the country and even a few dancers from out of the country. It was a grueling week.

The group started on Sunday with about 230 girls who quickly had their looks assessed and started learning new choreography. The judges cut that group to about half for the second round. Many felt they had worked out their nerves at that point and the cut to Round 3 came quickly. The goal in Round 3 was to make it to HEAT Dancers Boot Camp and 58 dynamic dancers made it through.

HEAT Dancers Director, Natalia Gonzalez, said she was looking for 20-25 girls "who just have it and have this confidence about them that exudes out and command attention when they're performing."

HEAT Dance Boot Camp started Monday at the JW Marriott Hotel on Brickell Avenue. Peter Marrero, HEAT Dancers Physical Trainer, put the dancers through a vigorous workout. As he explained, "The first day of Boot Camp is always the hardest and longest." He went on to say that some girls cry, some throw up and others just want to die. "Each day gets harder and harder," he said. Marrero's workout also included basketball drills, ball handling, and shooting to give the girls a feel for what the players have to do.

On Friday evening, the finals were held at 7pm in the Miami-Dade County Auditorium. The event was free to attend and even HEAT mascot, Burnie, danced a solo on stage. By the end of the evening, the Miami HEAT announced their 2013-2014 dance squad through photos on Instagram.

After this long week of work, there's no question the title "Miami HEAT Dancer" was earned, not given.

Enjoy the above photo gallery of your new Miami HEAT Dancers (via @MiamiHEAT Instagram and @MiamiHEATDancer Twitter).

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