Genia Blum

I'm a Swiss Ukrainian Canadian writer, translator, dancer.

My memoir in progress is titled Escape Artists; my published work includes creative nonfiction essays, flash essays, micro-flash and literary translations from German to English. I have been nominated four times for a Pushcart Prize, and “Slaves of Dance,” based on excerpts from my memoir, was named a “Notable Essay” in The Best American Essays 2019.

I was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. My parents were World War II refugees from Western Ukraine who met in an Austrian displaced persons camp, married and emigrated to Canada. After training at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School, I danced professionally in Europe, became a soloist at the Lucerne Theater ballet company in Switzerland and was guest teacher and choreographer at Kiev State Ballet Academy in Ukraine. 

A stage career came as a matter of course to me: not only was my mother a ballet dancer, her father and grandfather were classically trained stage actors and singers in Ukraine; other relatives were opera singers, musicians, actors, and composers. My mother's brother, Bohdan Nyzankiwsky, was a writer and a poet. 

For over twenty-five years, I was the founding director of Lucerne's largest ballet school, Dance Art Studio, from which I retired in 2018 in order to devote more time to writing—although I still preside over a dance foundation named in honor of my ballerina mother, Daria Nyzankiwska Snihurowycz.

My Swiss husband and I have two children. Both are artists: our son Julian is a photographer who studies Fine Art in Berlin; our daughter Daria is a London-based performance artist starting her postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Arts.  

My work has appeared or is forthcoming in:

  • Assay: Journal of Nonfiction Studies
  • Asymptote Journal
  • Atticus Review
  • Bending Genres
  • Berfrois
  • (b)OINK zine
  • Creative Nonfiction Magazine (Tiny Truths)
  • Essay Daily
  • Monkeybicycle
  • Solstice Literary Magazine
  • Sonora Review
  • The /tƐmz/ Review
  • Queen Mob’s Tea House
  • Under the Sun
Using Format