Kelsey Headshot

I’m a theatre, performance, and physical culture scholar, a young adult fiction author, and a community-engaged artist & activist.

Currently, I am pursuing SSHRC-funded postdoctoral research on circus, sport, and musical theatre in the Department of English at McGill.

My diverse interests are linked by my interest in bodily movement and popular performance genres, my investment in thinking, working, and playing across socio-cultural domains, and my commitment to exploring how performance, broadly defined, can empower individuals, groups, and communities.

Below, you’ll find one short and one long official bio.

Short Bio

Kelsey Blair (B.A., University of British Columbia; M.A. University of Toronto; M.A. University of British Columbia; PhD Simon Fraser University) is a theatre, performance, and physical culture scholar, young adult fiction author, and community-engaged artist and activist. She recently completed her PhD in English with an en emphasis in Performance Studies from Simon Fraser University and is currently a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of English at McGill. She is also a young adult fiction author who has published four sport fiction novels for girls, a Director of the Steering Committee for the Centre for Spectatorship, the curator of the Activist Classroom, a community-engaged theatre & performance artist and activist, and a director on multiple not-for-profit Boards.

Long Bio

Kelsey Blair (B.A., University of British Columbia; M.A. University of Toronto; M.A. University of British Columbia; PhD Simon Fraser University) is a theatre, performance, and physical culture scholar, young adult fiction author, and community-engaged artist and activist. She recently completed her PhD in English with an en emphasis in Performance Studies from Simon Fraser University, where she completed a dissertation on cultural performance of sport. Building from this work, she is currently pursuing postdoctoral research on sport, circus, and musical theatre  n the Department of English at McGill. In addition to her co-edited trade volume Basically Queer: An Intergenerational Introduction to LGBTQA2S+ Lives, published in 2017 by Peter Lang, her academic work has been published in several academic journals and edited collections including:  The Canadian Theatre Review, Studies in Musical Theatre, Research in Drama Education: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance, and The International Journal of Sport History. 

She is also a young adult fiction author. Drawing from her tenure as a varsity women’s basketball player at the University of British Columbia and her experiences playing professional basketball in Sweden, Kelsey writes sports’ fiction for 10-13 year old girls. Her first book, Pick and Roll, was published by Lorimer in 2014 for their Sports’ Stories series and was named one of the Canadian Children’s Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens. Her second book, Ugly Kicks, was published in 2016, and her third book, Making the Team, was commended as one of the Canadian Children’s Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens. Her most recent book, Tough Call, was released in Fall 2018 and was also named as one of the anadian Children’s Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens.

In addition to these pursuits, Kelsey leads several scholarly, sporting, and artistic projects. Currently, she is the online curator for performance and pedagogy website, the Activist Classroom, a Director for the Centre for Spectatorship and Audience Studies Research at the University of Toronto, a Director on the Board of Directors for Basketball British Columbia, a Director for New World’s Theatre Board, a selected member of the British Columbia Basketball Official’s commission, and the women’s basketball representative for the University of British Columbia’s Alumni Council. She was also the co-lead artist for a senior’s art collective (Quirk-e), a playwright and director for several community-engaged theatre & performance projects, and the head coach of numerous girls’ and women’s basketball teams, including the Native Education College women’s team  from 2010-2018.

Kelsey frequently does workshops, readings, and speaking engagements with elementary schools, high schools, and organizations such as Canada Basketball. She’s always interested in new opportunities.

You can reach her at: info@thekelseyblair.com