Timeline

FITNESS

Pepper trained exercise teachers around the nation by co-starring in "ESPN Fitness Pros" TV show. He is also a member of the Reebok National Aerobic Championship team. Many of Pepper's competitive athletes he has worked with became well known and successful such as Sandra Augustin, owner of SASS Fitness.

To the right, watch the 1991 Reebok Champion Video.Pepper placed 1st in both the 'Men's Individual' and 'Team of Three' categories from the Pacific Regional Reebok competition. Moving on to become Reebok's National Aerobic Champion of the world.

"Pepper's influence, advice, amazing choreography and drive to excel has been a major factor in my professional success as a Group Exercise Instructor, Personal Trainer and IFBB Professional Fitness competitor.  I value his opinion and praise over all others.  I always look forward to our joint ventures and projects." - Sandra Augustin

 

Pepper Von Testimonials

Pepper Von is a world renowned dance and fitness instructor, choreographer, performer and motivational speaker. He has conducted master dance and fitness workshops and seminars throughout the U.S., Canada, Asia, Europe, Central and South America. As a previous Reebok National Aerobics Champion, Pepper was nominated for Instructor of the Yearaward by the International Dance and Exercise Association. He subsequently has been presented the Make Fitness Happen Award. His credits include Talk Show Host, Dance Consultant, and Dance Production Director for SAFE Streets, KCRA-TV, Sacramento; Production Choreographer for WABS-TV, New York and for television Emmy Awards Show; Choreographer for three music videos in association with Kids Reaching Out and Saying No to Drugs. Pepper has appeared on the "Mike and Matty" show and featured on the national television show "EXTRA"

Pepper is co-founder of DREAM COLLECTIVES, a creative dance and motivational program for development of personal pride, self-esteem and sense of community for children of all ages.

Zumba Fitness - Ditch the Workout and Join the Party

Are you ready to party yourself into shape? That's exactly what the Zumba® program is all about. It's an exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow, Latin-inspired, calorie-burning dance fitness-party™ that's moving millions of people toward joy and health.

A Personal Letter to Pepper From Beto Perez - Zumba Fitness Creator

In 1994 in the big capital city of Colombia, Bogota, where I moved to from a smaller city, Cali. I had the unbelievable opportunity to go to my first aerobics convention, where the fitness celebrity Pepper Von was presenting. I had the privilege to take one of his classes, and in the middle of his session he invited me and my best friend Walter to come on stage with him. I couldn't even sleep that night; I was full of joy and felt privileged for the opportunity.

Two days later, there was a meeting for some of the instructors, where Pepper Von was giving a speech about fitness and motivation. After a while Pepper Von asked if anybody had a question. I raised my hand and asked, while a translator helped me, and aked " if I have an idea about a different type of fitness class, what do I have to do to become a respectful , wellknown instructor like you, and make people believe in my fitness program? Pepper's answer was exactly what I was doing at the time and ensured me that I was going in right path. He said : who perseveres and is patient will make if far in life, and then the right moment will come in the right place" At the end of the speech, Pepper Von signed his post card to each one of the participants.

A lot of years went by, and I kept my thoughts and Peppers' advice always in me. I believed in myself as an instructor and in my program. Now, 14 years later after Pepper Von's speech, I see the results and the success reflected on Zumba Fitness.

For that reason, I invited Pepper Von to the 2011 convention in Orlando, Florida. And we worked together in a video and I introduced him to all my student/instructors as my mentor and inspiration. I believe it is important that everyone knows, that we all learn from each other and have a mentor who we learn a lot from, and in my case this mentor was Mr. Pepper Von. Many Thanks, from the bottom of my heart. Beto Perez, Zumba Fitness Creator.

 

 

Fitness 4 Everyone

Pepper is certified by the National Handicapped Society and fashioned his "Fitness for Everyone" programs which includes those in wheelchairs and those who are hearing impaired. He serves on the California Governor's Committee for the Employment of Disabled Persons and organized a major fund-raising effort with the purpose of benefiting AIDS research.

Fierce Funk

Fierce Funk is a new, exciting dance-fitness program founded by Pepper Von, one of the most respected and creative dance-fitness practitioners. Pepper’s creation combines a street style funk movement with a contemporary hip-hop feel, for an inspiring, fun and complete workout. His vision is for instructors to bring a sense of fun, empowerment, passion, energy and a philosophy of love toward others to their classes through dance and fitness movements to energizing music. The Fierce Funk culture is not just fitness and dance, it is a moving energy intended to refresh the spirit with fun, fulfilment and love so Fierce Funk participants are more healthy and happy.

Fierce Funk

ZES

ZES

ZES

Zumba Fitness - Ditch the Workout and Join the Party

Are you ready to party yourself into shape? That's exactly what the Zumba® program is all about. It's an exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow, Latin-inspired, calorie-burning dance fitness-party™ that's moving millions of people toward joy and health.

 

ZES - Testimonials

"I think Pepper's talk was really good. I really like the part when he talked about communication. It made a lot of sense. But the best thing I think he talked about was gangs. Pepper's a really smart guy."


"I think that what he said was very important because I believe that it's true -- some people do give up only because they see that they're not getting it. I also think that me and you and all the people in this world have to care and love someone in this world. When he was talking about parents, I felt sad because I don't have my mother with me. I would like to care for my dad but I don't think that he ever cared about me. If he did care about me he would take me with him but he didn't even bother to ask me. But I do have my little sister that I care about; I care for her and myself and my other family."


"Thank you for providing us the opportunity to host Pepper Von. Not only was his message so apropriate for our students his use of positive Rap provided a medium they relate to readily. He is truly a dynamic performer with an important message.

On behalf of the students and staff at Queensmount Sr. P.S., thank you"


"Thank you very much for showing our students how much "fun" exercising can be! You really motivated and captured our students' interest. Your upbeat and positive attitude was contagious!!! The adults as well as the students had a wonderful time and weren't even dampered because of the rain. Your enthusiasm for fitness is something they talked about for days.

Once again, thank you for bringing "fun" into something that is actually "good" for them. The students are already asking when you will be coming back. We hope to see you again."

 

DANCE

Pepper will take your dancing beyond the expectations and limits you thought you had to a higher performance! Whether a beginner or a professional, a variety of classes are offered for all skill levels and stages of life.

Pepper von dance
Step 1 dance and fitnessStep 1 is a professional fully equipped dance, aerobic, and fitness studio, and is the fruit of Pepper’s hard work and determination. His limitless enthusiasm and motivating energy inspires the lives of others.  A tenured role model and voice for physical fitness for all, Von has become the leader of Sacramento's dance and fitness.

COMMUNITY

Motivational Speaking

Pepper Von I Can Live My Dream
Pep Talks
 

 

Pepper captivates audiences with tips on goal setting, living a life of joy and personal growth dealing with self-perception verses reality. Never have a bad day ever again.

Peptalks - I can live my dream. Peptalks - Improve your life experience.

Dream Collectives

Pep Talks - Pepper Von Reaches High School Students
Pepper Von Motivates Kids in High School Against Violence

In Summary Dream Collectives is An Innovative Rehabilitation Program That Focuses on Multi-Level Relationship Building, Community Interaction and Life Planning. Dream Collectives serves to identify and redirect misguided youth by inspiring a positive change through reflection of one's choices and introduction to pro-social activities and programming. In the process of projecting their dreams, these youth will promote change and become a catalyst in their community.

Students will be equipped with resources, education, tools and experiences which will provide for a positive non-criminal adjustment in their schools, families and their communities.

Enough Is Enough

E.I.E Promotional Video
Pepper Von Enough Is Enough

E.I.E (Enough Is Enough) School Assemblies Program

The California State Constitution affirms that students and staff have the right to attend safe schools. E.I.E. is an evidence based program with a research supported approach.

Our Intentions are to help decrease student absence and increase student achievement. We believe that affective schools are safe schools. E.I.E. is designed to assist schools and communities in recognizing, understanding, defining, and responding to abusive antisocial behavior.

Our Mission is to help decrease the threat to safety in your neighborhoods going to and from school, as well as on your campus, by providing resources, support, and interactive programming.

Through raising awareness, increasing education, encouraging intervention and prevention, this program can assist you in regaining self esteem, self worth, self respect and taking back your personal power.

We do this by standing together and declaring that "Enough is Enough". You will no longer allow bullies to steal your joy nor control your lives. So come with us on this journey..."A return to personal freedom"

Show Production

Pepper speaks to 7th and 8th graders in Queens mount Public School about the dangers of drugs, smoking, alcohol and gangs.

"D7 Visual and Performing Arts Show Case"
(Dream, Desire, Discipline, Dedication, Determination, Direction, DO!)

The purpose of D7 is to encourage growth and achievement through visual and performing arts. This is accomplished by having the youth commit to a positive activity and exhibit an ability to remain disciplined, while seeing a project through to the finish. Identifying a passion in creative arts, staying focused, and determination, gives youth an impartial opportunity to work collaboratively and effectively with their peers as well as adults...while fulfilling their dreams.

Dream Collectives (GPS2)

An Innovative Prevention/Intervention Program that focuses on multi-level relationship building in schools through community interaction and life planning.Mission Statement: The mission of the program is to provide students with resources, educational tools, and experiences which will provide for a positive adjustment in their schools, their families, and their communities.

Lack of achievement or participation in conventional, pro-social daily activities leads students into conflict and instability. This lack of social support makes it more likely for students to display negative behavior. To be effective, efforts must focus on factors that are both dynamic and changeable.

Factors such as:
- Youth and Gang Violence
- Substance Abuse
- Bullying

Dream Collectives (GPS2) serves to identify and redirect at-risk youth by inspiring a positive change through reflection of one's choices and introduction to pro-social activities and programming. In the process of projecting their dreams, students will show change and become a catalyst in their families, their schools and their communities.

Benefits of the program:
- A reduction in truancy
- Exposure to long/short term goals
- Tracking and participation in pro-social activities in the community

Dream Collectives (GPS2) will be on campus 3 days a week, 2 hours per day. We will provide prevention/intervention services, case management, and home visits through street outreach services. At the end of each 3 month period we will host an on stage production/assembly to give the students an opportunity to recognize their talents in the areas of visual and performing arts. This will give the students an opportunity to work collaboratively and effectively with their peers in the process of fulfilling their creative dreams. We will also help develop a peer to peer conflict management team.

Sample "The Gun" an original song written and recorded by Pepper to encourage the decrease of gun violence.

Reaching Out

 

 

Pepper talks to elementary school children about self-esteem, staying in school and embracing a healthy lifestyle.

Stressing the Importance of Academic Education
Because of Peppers strong passion to spread the importance of education to young kids he decided to teach dance at local colleges and high schools. Pepper has always had a passion for teaching, and progress. As much as he stresses the importance of an academic education, he realized the school system wasn't as progressive as it could be. Therefore, he collaborated his talents and skills, and came up with his own way to help kids become productive citizens.


Pepper speaks about self-esteem as part of the summer Standard English Program at Susan B. Anthony Elementary School.

"I love to teach. My goal is to help my students-whether professionals or beginners, physically fit or physically challenged-strive to reach an ultimate vision, a sense of spirit, respect, health and happiness."

Reaching Out - Testimonials

Pepper Von Testimonials

"I think Pepper's talk was really good. I really like the part when he talked about communication. It made a lot of sense. But the best thing I think he talked about was gangs. Pepper's a really smart guy."


"I think that what he said was very important because I believe that it's true -- some people do give up only because they see that they're not getting it. I also think that me and you and all the people in this world have to care and love someone in this world. When he was talking about parents, I felt sad because I don't have my mother with me. I would like to care for my dad but I don't think that he ever cared about me. If he did care about me he would take me with him but he didn't even bother to ask me. But I do have my little sister that I care about; I care for her and myself and my other family."


"Thank you for providing us the opportunity to host Pepper Von. Not only was his message so apropriate for our students his use of positive Rap provided a medium they relate to readily. He is truly a dynamic performer with an important message.

On behalf of the students and staff at Queensmount Sr. P.S., thank you"


"Thank you very much for showing our students how much "fun" exercising can be! You really motivated and captured our students' interest. Your upbeat and positive attitude was contagious!!! The adults as well as the students had a wonderful time and weren't even dampered because of the rain. Your enthusiasm for fitness is something they talked about for days.

Once again, thank you for bringing "fun" into something that is actually "good" for them. The students are already asking when you will be coming back. We hope to see you again."

CHOREOGRAPHY AND PRODUCTION

Let's Go

Pepper Von's choreographic venture "Let's Go!" has received critical acclaim beyond Sacramento.

Let's Go! is an original show written by Pepper Von and has received an Elly Award for Best Choreography of a musical production. The show consists of a twenty four member cast of professional dancers and singers at odds to determine which group will reign supreme. Throughout the production, the opposing entities compete for the spotlight.

United through a tragic loss, the performers come together in Act II and put on a show you'll never forget. You'll be hard-pressed to find more talent on one stage anywhere.

Creating a concert atmosphere, audience members are highly encouraged to "dance with the dancers and sing with the singers" throughout the performance and select their favorite group. Musical genres vary from gospel, country, rock and roll, Motown, and pop. Dance numbers include hip hop, Latin, jazz, ballet, African, and tap. The show's content and costumes are thrilling, yet family friendly.

Let's Go! will take you on a roller coaster ride of emotions through its inspirational stories, jaw-dropping dance numbers, and soulful renditions of your all time favorite songs.

Smokey Joe's Cafe

Pepper, Elly Award Winner for Best Supporting Actor, co-stars in the musical "Smokey Joe's Cafe".

"Smokey Joe's Cafe," opened on Broadway and gathers 39 of the greatest songs ever recorded and written by Leiber and Stroller providing outstanding entertainment that express American culture. "Smokey Joe's Cafe" isn't just great pop music - it's compelling musical theatre.

But it doesn't stop there; Pepper being one of the best choreographer’s in Northern California has choreographed hundreds of theater productions throughout California in addition to choreographing for the Emmy® Awards production.

Choreography

Choreographed by Pepper Von, this is perhaps the most emotional sequence ever staged in Garbeau's history commemorating WWII.

In this series, civilians finished singing a gospel song; sirens begin to wail as an intense battle scene is staged through modern dance. The battle ends soldiers either survive or fall, a mother receives "The Letter" that her son will not be returning home. A lone soldier, struggling under the weight of the American flag, calls for help to raise it forming the famous image on Iwo Jima.

Countless troops, veterans and civilians proclaim that this is a poignant and inspiring depiction of, truly, "America, the Beautiful."

Sing, Sing, Sing

More Productions Choreographed by Pepper Von

Detroit Swing City
Minnie the Moocher
Beat Me, Daddy, Eight to the Bar

Show Production - Testimonials

I loved the show "Let's Go!" and would see it again and again."I travelled to Sacramento from the bay Area to see this show and it was well worth it. I saw the Sunday night show! The message of this show was from the heart of the dancers and singers. The level of performance is what I would expect from anything Pepper Von is involved with. Explosive, emotional, interactive, spellbinding, heart wrenching and completely inspirational and uplifting Bravo Pepper and all involved with this fantastic gift to us all!
Barbara Miron from Redwood /City, CA


"WOW" Just came back from the 2:00 Sunday show of "Let's Go!" Wow it was amazing, I would see it again. The end of the show really Blessed me. The testimonies after the show hit right to the heart and gave me a revelation. Over all, the show is worth much more than what's paid for.

MOUSE from Sacramento , CA


"DO NOT MISS THIS" If you missed the teaser performance, you missed out!!! This is a killer show! I cannot wait to see the full production! I cannot believe that this talent comes from Sacramento! Great job, Let's Go!Melissa from Roseville , CA

Show Production - Let's Go!

Let's go promo

It’s late on a hot summer night at Garbeau's Dinner Theater, and the performance has just ended. The stage lights come down as the audience erupts in applause. The performers, glistening with sweat, move among the tables and mingle with the audience, graciously accepting the riotous acclaim. Finally, the noise dies down, but at the back one man in a stylish fedora set over long, rippling black dreadlocks is still whistling, clapping and carrying on like there's no tomorrow.

This is Pepper Von: dancer and choreographer, successful Midtown businessman and hero to more kids and adults than could fill this room. And this is his show. It's his concept, his choreography and most especially his cast. He's wrung from them their very best work, and now he's applauding them for meeting his lofty standards. And they crowd around him; it's a mutual love fest.

Von's choreographic venture Let's Go has received critical acclaim beyond Sacramento, and he's been approached about creating a road show. It's just the latest challenge for a man who starts every day with the mantra, "Do not let me miss the opportunity to be a miracle in someone's life today."

Von has lived in Sacramento most of his life gaining national credibility for his dancing, kickboxing, aerobics, mentoring and speaking. He was a star of ESPN’s “Fitness Pros" show, has appeared in dozens of theater and music productions and has won a slew of national and local awards.

But first and foremost he considers himself a teacher.
He and partner Mary Wright opened Midtown's Step 1 Dance& Fitness more than 20 years ago. Wright was a hospital administrator, Von the creative type. It was a perfect match. "Our passions are so well defined," he says.