TLC’s new “Cheer Perfection” could be the next “Dance Moms”

While Dance Moms has Abby Lee Miller and a veteran team of uber competitive moms, TLC’s new Cheer Perfection  (Wednesday, July 11 at 10pm ET) has an equally intense coach/co-owner in Alisha Dunlap of Arkansas’ Cheer Time Revolution, and a somewhat less-fashionable foursome of “Cheer” moms who are determined to see their kids win.

Cheer Perfection debuts as a one-hour special with an opportunity to go to a series pending viewer interest. From the sizzle reel it looks promising, as Dunlap shares that Abby Lee ferociousness, belting out orders and expectations and not backing down to crying youngsters unsure of their abilities. Biggest difference, however, is that Dunlap brings more heart to her coaching style.

“I’m a hard coach but I got a big heart for cheer,” Dunlap tells Channel Guide Magazine. “I love these kids. I like to push them, but then I always like to reward them in the end.”

Proving so, Dunlap is far quicker on offering praise when performance warrants it. She’s clear on her expectations for her team and for the moms. “The most important quality that a child needs to have is they need to have the heart for the sport – if they love the sport and their heart is in it, they’ll do well,” she says. “An ideal cheerleading mom for me also has to have the love for the sport. They need to want their child to be good. They need to have dedication because they have to bring their kids to practice and they have to be just as involved and be willing to give up their time to be at a gym, all the time practicing and getting their kids where they need to be so we can coach them to be the best.”

And sometimes “Cheer” moms can be equally as hard as their coach. While Ann Robinson (Torrann’s mom) got a bit of a tongue lashing from a fellow mom who calls her the “queen bitch,” Robinson tells cameras “I don’t spend all this money to lose.”

Regardless of how the moms behave, Dunlap says “the mom’s influence has no influence on me. It’s not the kid’s fault how their parents act and I deal with the kids. … If a mom thinks her kid is great and needs to be in the front position or she needs to be on the top of the pyramid, then her kid needs to show it. The kids earn their spots.”

Capturing that drive to be the best (and all the craziness that can come along with it) is something producers of Cheer Perfection have mastered, a familiar task as they are also the veteran producers of the popular Toddlers & Tiaras series.

“I know that TV is TV and they’re going to edit it the way they want to edit it, but I hope that I do a good job and present our gym and myself in the way we really are and they don’t edit us to make us look crazy,” Dunlap concludes.

The one-hour special will follow a week leading into tryouts for a new elite team Dunlap is compiling, and viewers will see the talent, drama and rivalries that emerge as the young competitors – and their moms – do everything it takes to make the team.

Cheer Perfection airs on TLC Wednesday, July 11 at 10pm ET.

10 Comments

  1. These moms are all nuts. Quit trying to live through your daugthers. Most of you should hit the gym and quit trying to make your daughters into something they are not.

  2. Easily the worst show I’ve ever seen. Cassadee – who has a FULL – should NOT be trying out for a Level 2 team…that should be embarrassing for her. When they began talking about Youth Silver, I was expecting it to be Youth 5…NOPE. This show portrayed all-star cheerleading horribly. And people wonder why cheer gets any respect…
    I wish they had covered a decent, well-run gym. I hope this show never airs again.

  3. I WAS looking forward to this new series! First of my daughter has been cheering for years and made her schools varsity squad entering her freshman year and competes at a national level. Her squad receives its choreography and practices at a local competition facility as well. My stepdaughter has done both school and competitive cheer for years. They were excited to watch it too. With that said, we have traveled all over the south to compete from AL, FL, TN, GA and beyond, (competing against teams who have also traveled just as far, if not further) and I have never heard of this facility, never. I was shocked at the ages of the girls and their total lack of skill with both their routines and tumbling. NONE of them would survive in the level of competition I’ve seen over the years (squads of the same age and size) and as the coach/owner of the business, I’d be horrified at my “girls” lack of talent being aired for anyone who has a real clue! It reminded me of a gymnastics gym practicing its toddler classes. I felt terrible for these girls!! As far as the Moms, I’ve witnessed what we call “Cheer Moms” and though these ladies on the show may strive to be such, they just are NOT. And isn’t that the half of what the show and audience want to see? If there’s anything worse than a “Cheer Mom” its a “Wanna Be Cheer Mom.” This crew is uneducated and has NO sense of the sport itself. They are not entertaining, they posses bad hair and wardrobe (two things you will NOT find a true cheer Mom lacking, ha ha) they are not funny, cute, nor what a “real” Cheer Mom would associate with. I have NO clue why TLC chose this gym with all the great facilities out there. If they were really looking for talent, strength, skill, “Mamma Drama” and diversity, they failed to deliver with this dud group. Watch shows like Dance Moms and you will find (whether we’ve grown to love or hate them) Moms who posses half a brain (whether they’re crazy or sane or we agree with them), and kids who ROCK in skill and talent!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Torrans Mom, or any of them, including the owner/coach will never earn the true “love to hate” or “hate” or “vixen” title (which is what reality TV seems to be about) because this show just doesn’t have the necessary players to make it! Including the inexperienced cheerleaders. I say, PULL the show, keep rolling the cameras over the course of a few years, establish your gym, your squads and call TLC back when you have a REAL story to share with us.

    • Totally agree Jenna. I also have 2 granddaughters who have cheered since age 5, now both compete on HS Varisty, making the Nationals comp for the last few years. We are in NY and travel to Fl every Feb. for the Nationals. Even on their young, elementary school age LEAGUE teams… where ANYONE can join, coached by teenage cheerleaders, the teams skill level far surpassed Dunlop’s cheer gym’s talent levels. My Gands also cheer for a private cheer for a private All Star cheer gym that travels the east coast to various competitions that last for 2 or 3 days with anywhere from 500 to 800 teams competing at various levels. There is not way that this team could even make an appearance at ANY of those competitions! Alisha Dunlop has all the resources, but it is evident that she just doesn’t draw the talent that MUST be in her local area somewhere! Perhaps it’s her “coaching methods” that keep the REAL TALENT from entering her gym. I know that my grands would NEVER want to participate in a program run the way she runs that place. A tough coach is not a bad thing… but this woman is out of control!! She should take a breath from all her screaming and watch other coaches to pick up some pointers! I can’t imagine how bad their compeition must be for them to have won all the trophies they display in the gym. Wait till these girls hit HS Varsity and they get to see what cheer is really all about.

  4. I love this show cassadee is awasome and alishais is the best mom ever where is cheer perfection at torrann . was so mean when she was about to make a littel girl fall bonnie is so mean to her daughter alana and bonnie is mean to ann and olivia s. has a mom who want her childern to win all the time.Brook a. Is one of the bigist girls there because she is 13

  5. This show is ridiculous. There has been a struggle to get cheerleading viewed as a sport as these athletes truly work extremely hard and are very dedicated. To put a show like this out with moms acting like ediots, cheerleaders with no or very little talent is a diservice to the sport and the real cheerleaders out there. If you want to show case a real all star cheerleading team, show California all stars, top gun, to name a few. There is just too much stupid reality shows out there. How about an intelligent true reality show with dignity.

    • Agree! If these girls had talent and they made this the focus of the show, it’d be great. Then you throw in the Cheer Moms for a bit of flare, entertainment, etc. But this gym has none of the key players.

  6. Alisha is the same way she was on Toddlers & Tiaras. She will show favortism to her daughter who is not the best. None of these girls seemed to be good enough for competition.
    Torrain should not have made the team & should have had a long talk to about sportmanship. Her mom takes over the moms who are stupid enough to let her. I know a lot is scripted reality but some is not. I doubt this show will last very long. The coaches are not lieable, the parents are not likeable & no really talented children are there yet. Maybe with a lot more practice they may be.

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