Local author launches dance-themed book at Kingston School of Dance

Leanne Lieberman at Kingston School of Dance

By Hollie Pratt-Campbell

This past month has been one of many ‘firsts’ for the Tett, as tenant groups and resident artists have been gradually moving into their new spaces and getting down to work. On Saturday, Jan. 24, the centre also hosted its first ever book launch.

Local YA author Leanne Lieberman figured that the open house held at the Kingston School of Dance to celebrate their new location was the perfect place to launch her new dance-themed book, Off Pointe.

“I thought I might as well launch the book where the dancers are,” she remarks. “I thought it would be really fun. I’ve been really excited to see the new studio space and it’s so beautiful.

Off Pointe tells the story of a young ballerina named Meg.

“Meg is devastated one summer when her regular ballet program is cancelled,” Lieberman explains. “Her instructor suggests a dance camp where she has to learn other dance styles.”

At the camp, she meets some new friends and they all have to work together to create a dance.

“It’s about learning to dance other styles and getting a little bit out of yourself,” Leiberman says.

The topic is a familiar one for the author, who spent much of her childhood in dance studios.

“It was a huge part of my life and I loved it,” she notes.

Writing Off Pointe inspired Lieberman to dig out her old dancing shoes, so to speak, and get back into it; currently, she’s enrolled in a beginner contemporary class for adults at the Kingston School of Dance.

“It’s been a bit of a challenge because I haven’t danced in many years,” she admits.

“My body is a little bit older. But it’s been an incredible experience and I love it.”

She hopes that reading the book will similarly inspire young dancers, and all young people and readers, to follow their dreams.

“I hope they will be inspired to follow their passions, and also to treat their peers with respect and try to get along with other people. That’s part of life and it’s also part of dance – working with people, collaboration.”

Off Pointe is aimed at 11 to 14 year olds – a slightly younger age group than Lieberman’s other three novels, Lauren Yanofsky Hates the Holocaust, The Book of Trees and Gravity. It is available at Novel Idea. 

For more information about the author, visit www.leannelieberman.com.