By Stefanie Carrier
October 4, 2012
ORLANDO -- The relationship that the Orlando Magic Dancers share is a relationship similar to that of sisters. The close bonds they’ve formed from hours of practice, games and appearances are evident in the friendships they share. For two members of the dance team however, that term is used literally.
Candace and Heather are actually sisters, and this year, they’re dancing together with the Orlando Magic for the first time. While each has had a long journey to make it to this point, they are proud to share this experience together as a family. Candace was the first sister to be a part of the Orlando Magic Dancers, making the team for the 2003-04 season and staying a member for the next three years.
“Candace inspired me to audition,” said Heather. “She auditioned when she was 18 so I was a little high school freshman. I remember bringing her calendar to school to show it off to my friends; I was very proud.”
Candace excelled on the team, and her radiance shined onto little sister Heather. But when Candace felt a calling to become a nurse, she had to part ways with the organization to attend school in Alabama.
“Nursing school was by far one of the biggest challenges of my life,” Heather stated. “Not only was the curriculum very demanding, but also the fact that I was five hours away from my family and friends.”
Heather, following in her sister’s footsteps, auditioned for the Orlando Magic Dancers soon after Candace left for college. Heather joined the team in the 2010-11 season and has been an integral part of it ever since.
“I love being out in the community and getting to know our fans and the opportunities and joys that come with the job,” Heather said of her favorite part of the position on the squad.
Once Candace finished school, she felt drawn back to the bond she once shared with the team, but she knew it wasn’t going to be easy to make the cut after being away for five seasons.
“I prepared by taking some dance classes, getting my body back in shape through workouts, and getting as much information out of my little sister Heather who had been on the team for two years.”
And because of her determination, Candace made the team and now gets to dance side-by-side with Heather and represent the Orlando Magic Dancers together for the first time.
While the two sisters are excited to be dancing together this year, unbelievably, there is yet another member of the family who will be out on the Magic court performing. The girls’ father, Chuck, is a founding father of the 3D Dancing Dancer Dads, a group that entertains Magic fans during timeouts at select games. Chuck takes his dancing very seriously, but the most joy he gets out of being on the team is getting to watch his little girls.
“It’s great just to know the girls will be on the floor together,” said Chuck. “They love to dance and I’m proud of what they do for the community in such a quality organization.”
For Heather, Candace and dad Chuck – dancing is more than just performing at Magic games; it’s a family affair.
“We are a Magic family,” said Heather. “Always have been, always will be!”
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