Kaija Pepper has written three books on Canadian dance: The Man Next Door Dances: The Art of Peter Bingham (a Finalist for the 2008 City of Vancouver Book Award), The Dance Teacher: A Biography of Kay Armstrong, and Theatrical Dance in Vancouver: 1880’s–1920’s. Her writing has appeared in several newspapers, including The Globe and Mail, Dance International, and online at www.thedancecurrent.com.
A desire to go behind the scenes—to peek under the magician’s cape—drives much of Kaija’s writing. In “Resurrecting Étude” (Queen’s Quarterly, Winter 2008), she describes her reconstruction with Ballet Kelowna of Kay Armstrong’s 1949 ballet, Étude. Her monograph, Karen Jamieson’s Sisyphus, explores the creative process of remounting dance from the choreographer’s perspective.
Kaija, who has moderated The Dance Centre’s Noon series talkback for several years, has also presented artist talks for the Main Street Literary Tour and appeared at the Word on the Street festival with The Tomorrow Collective. She holds an MA in Liberal Studies from SFU and enjoys teaching writing as a sessional instructor at SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts.
Her relationship with dance began at the age of six and continues with unabated enthusiasm all these decades later. But these days, instead of ballet or modern dance classes, Kaija studies Iyengar yoga. A keen urban walker, she can often be seen crossing the Cambie Street Bridge on the way to the theatre.
- A Brief History of Ballet: From Pomp and Circumstance to Street Cool (55+) SCFC615