Per-Erik and Angela Boij

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Finnish
Finnish

Per-Erik and Angela Boij

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Per-Erik Boij was born in Vasa, Österbotten, Finland, the oldest child of Mrs. Tuulikki Boij-Topp, and he received his formal education in Vasa, Stockholm, Helsingfors, Djursholm, and Ekenäs. He graduated from the secondary co-educatijonal school in the Ekenä's in 2956, and in 1957, emigrated to Toronto, Canada with his mother and brother (who have returned to Sweden).

In the fall of 1973, Per-Erik met a woman from Liverpool, England, Angela Whitty, while folk dancing, and in the fall of 1974, they were married.

Per-Erik states that regrettably, during his years in Finland and Sweden, he does not recall ever having come into contact with folk dancing to any extent. His first exposures were in Toronto as a member of the Sisu Athletic Club in 1959 and 1960 with its folk dance team. It was not a very happy experience, but quite typical as it was a very cliquish group and it was very hard -- almost impossible -- to penetrate the shell. Dissatisfied, he joined a small, recreational international group in the fall of 1960. This group was led by Stig Sundholm, a very good leader. Unfortunately, Stig left Canada early in the spring of 1961, whereupon the group folded. Some of the members, and Per-Erik was among them, then joined the University Settlement Folk Dancers, with which he has mainly danced ever since.

Over the years, he has been a member of Nirkoda, Netherland's Folklore Group, and Shevchenko, for various lengths of time. He and Angela were not members of any larger exhibiiton group or team, but have on occasion presented couple performances or programs mainly of Scandinavian or Nordic content in the Toronto area and elsewhere in Ontario.

Since 1959, he has attended numerous workshops, weekends, camps, and seminars all over North America and in Scandinavia, including the San Diego State University Folk Dance Conference and Stockton Folk Dance Camp, and the Inter-Nordic festivals of Odense, Denmark in 1966. He has also been active in and sponsored workshops with Tom Bozigian and Stig Sundholm in 1973 and 1975. To a limited extent, he also has taught folk dancing to two adult groups -- the Nordic Society and the Village Dancers -- and to a choldren's group of the Macedonian-Bulgarian Community of Toronto.

Per-Erik's aspirations are to see a Nordic-type festival develop in Toronto, consisting of a parade through the city, exhibitions throughout the city, open air general participatory recreational folk dancing during the days of the event, folk dance and folk music for the general public, and a fellowship dinner for festival participants. The festival would be international in scope.

Per-Erik says, "I am very fortunate that Angela, my dear and wonderful wife, shares many of my interests and particularly the folk dancing, which is my favorite interest."