By Josh Cohen, OrlandoMagic.comORLANDO – There are so many heartwarming tales and extraordinary journeys linked to each of the 20 women chosen to represent the 2017-18 Orlando Magic Dance Team.
Victoria now holds the record for most years on the team. She will enter her ninth season as a Magic Dancer.
Top row, left to right: Kiki, Robyn, Erika, Nicole H, Jessica, Chenise, Olivia, Bethany, Desiree, Lauren, Mileyka
Bottom row, left to right: Nikki, Katrina, Julia, Victoria, Nicole F, Cierra, Lily, Zuli, Kara
“It’s a feeling that I will never forget, it’s truly an honor,” she said. “It shows how much faith they have in me to bring me back on the team for another season.”
Lauren overcame a major knee injury and returns for her fifth season. The Orlando native tore her ACL last December and spent the next five months rehabilitating.
“It feels amazing,” she said. “I was doing everything I could to get myself ready. So exciting.”
Jessica and Julia, who each auditioned in the past, are inspirations to others who may not accomplish their dreams right away. They are proof that hard work, dedication and a never-give-up attitude often leads to success.
“I didn’t want to give up, perseverance and dedication is No. 1,” said Jessica, who was a finalist the prior three years. “It feels surreal to me.”
Robyn, who recently moved to Orlando, can now really call Central Florida home.
“This is what I’ve been wanting to do,” she said. “Looking forward to meeting all these girls and a new team to work with.”
All 20 can share their remarkable journeys with one another and Magic fans. Ahead are a lot of incredible experiences and memories they will cherish forever.
The team was announced at the conclusion of Wednesday’s final auditions. Each dancer performed a pair of routines in front of a live audience at Amway Center. Fans were also able to watch on OrlandoMagic.com and Facebook Live.
This event capped off an exciting audition process. In the prior days, each of the finalists participated in rehearsals, physical fitness assessments and interviews with Magic representatives.
Being a Magic Dancer is about much more than dancing. They play an integral role in the community. Throughout the season, the dancers contribute at various community events and help put smiles on children’s faces.
“I’m so excited because I do a lot of community service work with Disney right now, I’m part of one of their committees that does community service so I am so excited for the new opportunities,” Julia said.
The friendships formed from this sisterhood will last a lifetime. Victoria looks forward to getting reacquainted with her returning teammates and bonding with her new ones as well.
“We have a lot of talented girls and I can’t wait to see them go to work,” she said.