Positively Midlife Podcast

Choreographing a Delicious Life with Julia Adam: Dance, Food, and Family - Ep 55

June 21, 2023 Tish & Ellen Season 2 Episode 55
Choreographing a Delicious Life with Julia Adam: Dance, Food, and Family - Ep 55
Positively Midlife Podcast
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Positively Midlife Podcast
Choreographing a Delicious Life with Julia Adam: Dance, Food, and Family - Ep 55
Jun 21, 2023 Season 2 Episode 55
Tish & Ellen

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Can you imagine building a successful business that combines the world of dance, culinary arts, and family all into one unforgettable experience? Our guest, the incredibly talented Julia Adam, has done just that! As a former ballerina, choreographer, and artistic associate, Julia has navigated through the challenges of a demanding career and motherhood, ultimately creating her innovative concept JAD Experience in Sonoma County, California.

From a young Canadian who dappled in figure skating before dedicating to ballet, to a National Ballet of Canada dancer, and a San Francisco Ballet principal dancer Julia's journey has been nothing short of inspiring. She shares with us her decision to pursue ballet over figure skating at a young age and the sacrifices she made along the way. We also discuss the competitive nature of the dance world and how Julia learned to embrace it, all while juggling the expectations of being a successful woman and mother.

In this episode, you'll learn all about JAD Experiences, where farm-to-table food and live dance performances come together in a truly unique way. With the support of her husband Aaron and their children, Julia has built a thriving family business that encourages other women to create the life they desire. So, join us for this engaging and insightful conversation with Julia Adam, and be ready to feel inspired to follow your own dreams and passions!

Click here for more information and to buy TICKETS to the 2023 Regenerare events, on July 7,8,9,14,15,16!

Julia Adam Dance

Tish and Ellen want to give a BIG thank you to everyone who helped support the show.  And, please support us with a monthly PATREON subscription and get a quarterly live  Q&A with Ellen and Tish.

Obsessions - please use these links to support the show!
Tish: cork stoppers for the Oui yogurt glass containers.
Ellen:  Mason jars with solar fairy lights for your patio or deck

What we talk about in this episode:  Ballet, dance, farm to table, sustainable farming, cattle, creativity, San Francisco Ballet, Memphis Ballet,  recycling, sustainability, motherhood,  Marin, travel with kids,  choreography, events, community. 

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Send us a Text Message.

Can you imagine building a successful business that combines the world of dance, culinary arts, and family all into one unforgettable experience? Our guest, the incredibly talented Julia Adam, has done just that! As a former ballerina, choreographer, and artistic associate, Julia has navigated through the challenges of a demanding career and motherhood, ultimately creating her innovative concept JAD Experience in Sonoma County, California.

From a young Canadian who dappled in figure skating before dedicating to ballet, to a National Ballet of Canada dancer, and a San Francisco Ballet principal dancer Julia's journey has been nothing short of inspiring. She shares with us her decision to pursue ballet over figure skating at a young age and the sacrifices she made along the way. We also discuss the competitive nature of the dance world and how Julia learned to embrace it, all while juggling the expectations of being a successful woman and mother.

In this episode, you'll learn all about JAD Experiences, where farm-to-table food and live dance performances come together in a truly unique way. With the support of her husband Aaron and their children, Julia has built a thriving family business that encourages other women to create the life they desire. So, join us for this engaging and insightful conversation with Julia Adam, and be ready to feel inspired to follow your own dreams and passions!

Click here for more information and to buy TICKETS to the 2023 Regenerare events, on July 7,8,9,14,15,16!

Julia Adam Dance

Tish and Ellen want to give a BIG thank you to everyone who helped support the show.  And, please support us with a monthly PATREON subscription and get a quarterly live  Q&A with Ellen and Tish.

Obsessions - please use these links to support the show!
Tish: cork stoppers for the Oui yogurt glass containers.
Ellen:  Mason jars with solar fairy lights for your patio or deck

What we talk about in this episode:  Ballet, dance, farm to table, sustainable farming, cattle, creativity, San Francisco Ballet, Memphis Ballet,  recycling, sustainability, motherhood,  Marin, travel with kids,  choreography, events, community. 

Give us a review...
Click here

Want to start podcasting?  Click here to let Buzzsprout know we sent you, this gets you a $20 Amazon gift card if you sign up for a paid plan, and help support our show








What It's Like To Be...
What's it like to be a Cattle Rancher? FBI Special Agent? Professional Santa? Find out!

Listen on: Apple Podcasts   Spotify

Support the Show.

Website: www.thepositivelymidlifepodcast.com
Email: postivelymidlifepod@gmail.com

Speaker 1:

This week we welcome Julia Adam to the podcast, a talented and dynamic entrepreneur in the world of dance who's taking midlife head on. Some of her monikers are Ballerina, dancer, choreographer, artistic associate, mother, as I said, entrepreneur and more.

Speaker 2:

Alan, you know I always think, as dancers age, i would think that they would always feel like their options became more limited. You know, it's traditionally always been viewed as a young person's career. But what's exciting is our guest today will share how she created a career with longevity. We're going to see how she created a life that involved her family, her love of dance, her family-owned business. She crafted a business that combined farm to table food events with live dance performances in Sonoma County, california. You know, i have to say, julia is such an inspiration. She didn't let convention dictate what her career path would be. Rather, she combined all her life passion into an amazing new career at midlife, and I'm so looking forward to hearing how she developed Julia Adam events.

Speaker 1:

You know me too. I cannot wait to hear all about Julia's career, and you know what. She's not only accomplished, she is one of the funniest and most unfiltered people I know. I love spending time with her, so I think we're going to have a great show today.

Speaker 2:

You know, alan, dancing is not something I'm extremely skilled at, but I love to dance. It brings me so much joy.

Speaker 1:

You know I can second that with you, But I'm horrible at dancing as well And, as you know, I've started taking some dance lessons And Julia recently choreographed something that something super small, but I got to participate in it And I know we'll chat about that later in the show. But before we welcome Julia, you know we've got to get to our weekly obsessions. What do you got for me? Tish, I know it's something good.

Speaker 2:

I know It's actually something kind of simple. So I love this yogurt that they have out on the market called Wee O-U-I right, And it comes in these little glass containers. I love the texture, the feel of it, But it's like what do you do with these glass containers when you're done? My obsession this week is these little quark stoppers for the top of it, So you can use them for other things, whether it's small amounts of jams or some dressing you put in there. But it allows you to reuse these adorable, cute little jars by having a really pretty lid on it. So if you're taking a salad over to someone's house, you can put one of these lids on it, put your dressing in there and then kind of leave it for them as a little hostess gift too.

Speaker 1:

You are in love with your hostess gifts. I have to say I love little hostess gifts. No, i think it's great. I know that you and I are completely into recycling and sustainability, and that's a great way. I have seen those yogurts and I have not bought them, but this might encourage me to do so. Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Well, what about you, Ellen? What is your obsession for this week?

Speaker 1:

Well, I'm kind of in the same but a little bit different. I got these mason jars that have little fairy lights, that are solar, and you can put these out on your deck or your porch or you can hang them up because they have like a little almost like a lantern. And again, you could probably make these yourself if you were a little handier than I am. But I got them because, you know, Will graduated, We were going to be out on the deck, I had them all around and everyone loved them. They're really inexpensive. So something else with a glass jar dish, I hope you got a couple of pictures so we can post.

Speaker 2:

Of course I did.

Speaker 1:

You know me, pictures, pictures, pictures. All right, our guest, julia Adam, graduated from the National Ballet School in Ontario and she spent the next five years at the National Ballet of Canada And in 1988, julia joined the San Francisco Ballet, where she stayed for a very long time, finished her career her dancing career as a principal dancer, known for her lyricism, musicality and theatrical range, and then she went on to create over 70 works for companies across the US, including San Francisco Ballet, abt, oregon Ballet and Memphis Ballet. I'm sure I'm leaving some things out to Julia, but welcome to the podcast.

Speaker 3:

Thank you. Thank you, Alan and Tish. I'm excited How fun that there's a platform for some midlife older ladies Like us.

Speaker 2:

You know, to us this is the best time ever. But, julia, i want to know can you share with our listeners a little bit more about yourself?

Speaker 3:

Okay, so I am a Canadian, so that's something that I lead with, especially in America. It's an excuse for many things, you know. I just say, you know, like you said, unfiltered, i say that's because I'm Canadian, so born and raised in Canada and, you know, trained at the National Ballet School. So I went to ballet boarding school, which I think is also one of the problems with me. 13 to 18 I was, yeah, and one of those sort of terrifying Netflix series where the kids are all boarded up and training ballet. You know. Fled to San Francisco, like I say, i defected to my Canadian family. You know I actually followed a boy which is kind of funny But and fell in love with San Francisco, san Francisco Ballet, and, you know, was lucky enough to really pursue and fulfill my dreams of being a ballerina And then, along with that, started sort of dappling in choreography And lucky for me too, it's like I, you know, was seen and heard and being a female at that time in ballet as a choreographer was a big deal.

Speaker 3:

But my director, you know, sort of saw my talent and I got to do, i think, four works on the San Francisco Ballet, on the main stage and and so on, and so I've done. Anyway, it launched me into the, into the world, as a dance maker And, yeah, and settled in Marin as my husband pulled me out of the city which terrified me initially, but I'm so grateful to be out here and raised two beautiful children And, like you said, i've sort of what was it 10 years ago?

Speaker 3:

I got sort of tired of pulling my kids everywhere every time I had to go do something and sort of started developing something in my nest I call it that felt more authentic and real for me and my family.

Speaker 2:

I love that You know the idea of going away to boarding school at 13,. you really must have grown up quite quickly. But let's go kind of back to the beginning of how did you even get started in dance and did you start off specifically in ballet?

Speaker 3:

Well, so you know, being a Canadian girl, i started in skating. But me and figure skating and what's funny is right around the age of nine or 10, you know the sort of the Jerry Maguire's of skating kind of sit around the rinks and started looking at the little children and they came to my mother and said I'd like to, you know, take your daughter and start coaching her. And she's like, oh, i think she's going to kind of try ballet for a year and we'll get back to you. And that started it. And, by the way, my mother was a ballet arena, so it runs in the family. But once she I don't know I got in that room and I thought, oh, this is much more my style, that sort of leaping and spinning in the air. I'm not a real kind of ex game gal, i'm not launching myself through space upside down.

Speaker 1:

So ballet seemed more appropriate for me For you Just, julia, to add on to Tisha's question was was dance something that you really immediately felt passionate about? because to go to, you know, at 13, to a dance boarding school, i mean you must have really fallen in love with it or thought this this is my future.

Speaker 3:

You know it's funny because, like you said, i don't think anyone's a bad dancer, alan, i know you say, by the way, you rocked it in my choreography. Yeah, thank you, thank you, thank you. Yes, i do think that my obsessive, compulsive behavior like it's, like ballet and my that part of my person really connected deeply. Plus this love of music and this sort of way of communicating with your body was a good fit for me, Definitely, yeah. So when I auditioned for the National Ballet School because every 13 year old girl or even younger across Canada at least at that time, if you had an inkling of talent, that's where you went, that's where you would develop. And when they accepted me, i had never I don't really didn't do sleepovers. I always it was wild that, but I knew that that's what I had to do, so I went, yeah.

Speaker 1:

Good for you. I'm sure that was probably scary and you just jumped right in.

Speaker 3:

It was terrifying and you know years and all my years of therapy. I realized it did have a big impact on me in my life, leaving home at 13.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, well, you know, julia, the life of a dancer is very hard. It demands a lot of practice and competitiveness And I think the sacrifice and the punishment really that goes through to making this passion happen in your life. Can you share with us how you came to get to San Francisco ballet from the National Ballet of Canada?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, and just just going back a second, you know it never feels like punishment and it because it's what you do and what's what you do. Well, you know it's sort of So for me there was never a question, i just there, just wasn't. I think that, you know, young women now have much more opportunity in the world, so I do think sometimes they question it, but for me it was just like this is what I'm doing, this is what I'm good at And I love it And I would be. What is the word? Oh, i love that. You, how you forget where you turn 58 and it's like wait, no vocabulary. Oh, my gosh, like people would acknowledge me through every step.

Speaker 1:

I was seen and felt accomplished, so Right, you got the kudos, you got the rewards and it kind of kept you going and going right. Yeah, it felt comfortable.

Speaker 3:

Many of my friends that diff didn't. You could see them sort of fall off the tree, but I continued to get the excel. So now you. The question was how did I get okay, so well, a boy it started with a boy.

Speaker 3:

I did fall in love with a boy who danced with me in the National Ballet of Canada And at the beginning of our relationship he had already got a job at San Francisco ballet And it was a year of this sort of deep passion, but he was leaving. Maybe that's why it made it so great. And then, when he did leave, he finally left. I would visit him periodically and this is where I was just like, wow, i fell in love with the city. I. I fell in love with the light on the. I know something about the light out here And I liked, you know, having trained at this National Ballet school and then into the company They have an idea of you that stays a night sort of. I was 21 and I thought I'm going to reinvent myself And so I auditioned and, luckily, and I got the job and that's where it all started.

Speaker 1:

I think it's so interesting, julia, that you say that the reinvention. I think so many people come to California for reinvention and San Francisco really draws that. You know people who came for tech, but in the southern Cal people who come for you know the movie or film industry, and so I I can really see that. I pulled into Sausalito at 21 myself never having seen the city, and sat on a boat and fell in love as well. Right, i think it's such a great time. That was such a great time in San Francisco as well, because we're the same age.

Speaker 3:

Well, it's like, right, there's something about the West, right, it's like you Let me look at those donors I'm kidding Like there's something that pulled us west, and even back then that you know that my training so the National Ballet school was sort of modeled off the Royal Ballet School in London. So there was, you know. I mean, i had beautiful training but there was an exactitude about it that was somewhat confining and it felt claustrophobic to me. When I saw the San Francisco ballet and it was like there was this freedom about it, there was this And there were more individuals and it was very exciting to me. So was a great move for me.

Speaker 1:

I think that's amazing Again, being fearless, coming out west, right, i think this is a pattern in your life that we're going to see again and again. Maybe you don't see yourself like that, but I certainly do. You know, i know we talked about that you don't feel that ballet was punishing, but it is really rigorous physically, mentally, and it's very competitive. So I know, for us, when we watch the beautiful performances, we're not seeing what it's like behind the scenes, but in a way, ballet is like a sport and it's like theater. Right, it's a combination of so many things. How did you feel about that part of it being competitive? Are you a competitive person by nature?

Speaker 3:

Ellen, you sat with me at a volleyball game Our sons play volleyball together. Yes, i'm very competitive, and to a fault, i think, and I had to learn over the years through my therapy, through Oprah Winfrey, dr Phil, you name it.

Speaker 3:

I was like somebody help me with this. How do you sort of hone that edge? Because the good side is, it took me to be a principal dancer, a national known choreographer. It's helped me in a lot of ways And in other ways it was, you know, could be somewhat debilitating, Like when I I think I was seven years old, at a synagogue, the temple barbecue, and I was using the rabbis badminton racket. My brother was winning and I threw the racket down and broke it and I had to go tell the rabbi. So that was when I realized, oof, I better pull it and get this together.

Speaker 1:

That's right, it is competitive.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, i think that's a common thing for a lot of successful women, where they have to balance this drive, this amazing drive that makes them successful in balancing it with what the expectations are of being a woman.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, You know it's funny because, yeah, i mean enfant terrible. You know, the terrible child, the shrew from the taming of the shrew, these are things that people used to call me. Oh the truck arena. Oh, truck arena was another one, instead of the ballerina, because I looked like a ballerina but if I slipped or fell, i would, you know, yell out some horrible.

Speaker 2:

This is the unfiltered part that you were talking about. Right, that's right, yeah.

Speaker 1:

Definitely, definitely. You know, when we think of dance, of course, we think of people in their late teens and early 20s, but you've shown us, julia, that you can have a career that's much longer. And then I've seen photos of you I don't know if it's your son or your daughter in a baby Bjorn, with you choreographing and working with dancers. Can you share with us a little bit about how you blended motherhood and dance?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, well, it's funny because I was still dancing when I got pregnant with Zoe, my first who's 21. And she, as soon as I sort of pooped her out, or whatever you want to go, it's popped her out, It's popped her out And Canada's pooped her out, And you know I was, I went to my director because the plan was I would come back to dance and I was like, no, I'm not, I'm not going to pass this, because, like you said that to be a ballerina, I mean the amount of hours that you have to just really focus in on yourself. And I was relieved to think, oh, I get to think about someone else, not just me. So I, yeah, I would, but I was still what I was, choreographing.

Speaker 3:

So it was kind of great because I could combine the worlds And, and I would, you know, lay a blanket out and put her on the blanket And if she got fussy I'd pop her in the. You know, I just was just part of the world. So, yeah, with, with. And then I had my son three years later and I would, even when I would travel, I would just grab their independent study packets from their elementary schools And we'd go for a month or two months and sometimes even three months, And I would just take them over there. Like I do, have, you know, old Jewish, Romanian, gypsy blood in me.

Speaker 3:

So, so it's kind of that's what it was like. We're going, we're doing this, how I can feed you and how I can do my art, and you're part of it Well and really staying together as a family.

Speaker 1:

I think that's the one thing I noticed from talking to you about it was that you realized when you had your kids you wanted something that could combine those two things together.

Speaker 3:

Totally. Yeah, that's what, and it was amazing. It got so again 10 years ago. It got more problematic because they start digging their roots in And then I thought how do I and also you know this sort of freelance choreographer thing? it starts to feel like a lot of one night stands. It's sort of this strange because you have to go and be very vulnerable. That's the biggest problem with being a choreographer is, in order for me to do my art right, i need a space, i need dancers, it's it's. I don't get to sit in a room and write or paint or so it's so anyhow, that was one of the reasons that we started Julie Adam Dance was so we could again. It's like a big family business still, yeah, so And I.

Speaker 2:

you were saying that your mother was ballerina as well, but your daughter is now a professional ballerina with the Houston ballet, correct? Yes, she is. And how did you? how did you feel about her entering? you know this type of career like you had.

Speaker 3:

Well, again, I do think that I had so much success, right like, I'm not to say that it wasn't a lot of blood, sweat and tears, but it really fit my person to do that. So when I watched Zoe, I thought she again had the impulse. she I didn't push her, I mean, she'd been around at her whole life, obviously because but she wanted it and so I'm like not going to stand in her way. I just was like, okay, what do you want? you know let's, let's start this path and see where it takes you.

Speaker 3:

She again is she's a lot like I am competitive and driven and talented, and so she's, she's done it. I think she's a healthier point of view, only because, maybe because her mother, you know, can advise her a little bit about it. but she said to me the other day it's interesting to be in a job where you're, you have to be at your highest performance level every day, And this is the mark that makes it the hardest, because it's not like you know, excuse me, you know where you build up to your marathon, or it's like every day you come in you have to show up and be at your top. If you start to slip, that changes casting. it's like it's all this And I never really understood that till she expressed that the other day, like just two days ago. How do you sort of balance your cortisone adrenal levels?

Speaker 1:

even at age.

Speaker 3:

You know, i know we deal with men apposal women, you know but it was an interesting comment.

Speaker 1:

That is interesting, julia, because so many careers you don't have to be at the top of your game every day. It's many days that are so varied And I think that that's probably okay in your early 20s, you know. But you get to a point too where you have other distractions, like you know a husband or a partner or a family, and I really admire how you seem to have juggled that time with young children and then how you really took ownership of taking your family on the road with you. I find that really interesting. Do your kids really talk about that time at all?

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, it was amazing because we would. It was just like and the people that we would meet, you know, i spent a good 10 years in Memphis, kind of going back and forth And I mean we have, like those are like all the those dancers are like their most favorite aunts and uncles, you know, and we became very close with the dancers and the whole world and and my kids are, you know, like very involved now in the way I, like Alexander, my son, who just graduated, helps write me write the story of the dance I'm about to choreograph And have a, you know, input about music and it's like this whole pretty amazing.

Speaker 2:

Julia. Julia is is integrating your family into the world of ballet. Is that more common Or are you all really unique in that way? Because I always again like. My perspective was always like when you wanted a family is the time you stepped back from that career.

Speaker 3:

Yes, a lot of well, women, now a lot of women have babies and then go back to dancing and then your children hanging on the bars and hanging out. It really depends on, i think, the workplace like who's the culture of the workplace, the culture of my workplace, that they didn't bring their children around a lot. and I do think that, as a ballerina, as a choreographer, you know the difference is I close the door and the studio is mine. So even if I'm at San Francisco Ballet, i go into Studio G or F or whatever and I shut the door and it's my space. So if there's a kid, you know, asking for Cheerios while I'm, you know it's, it's, it's like I'm holding that. I think if you're a ballerina whose whose job is to sort of listen to the person running the room and your kids distracting you, that can be problematic.

Speaker 3:

but not for the you know, choreographer jobs of the room for the general.

Speaker 1:

So let's transition to Julia Adam events for a few minutes. Yeah, when and why did you start them? Can you give us a little bit of your history there?

Speaker 3:

Well, so, like I said, I wanted to build something in my own nest. I was tired of traveling, i was tired of pulling my kids out of school and out of there with friends and and I didn't want to leave them. So I was like I, this is just not interesting to me. I think again you go back to the 13 year old who left home, so here's a sort of neuroses that develops into a reality, right? So keeping my children close to me was very important. And the other thing was you know, i've done, you said, 70 works. My repertoire is actually over 100 now. I've just done so much choreography in theaters all over the country And when I sat on boards and symposiums and a lot of the conversation was about connecting the audience to the art and conversation after conversation like, oh my God, this is like, yeah, how do you get people?

Speaker 3:

you know you want you. You rush into the city or wherever you're going. You have to find parking and then maybe you go eat somewhere and then you need the bill and let's get going. And then you know the ladies walking around playing the xylophone, saying it's time to sit down and you know, did I go to the bath? you know, like there's this, there's this panic about, and then you sit down and you don't even know. You shuffle in and I don't know the person to my right or my left, and I sit in this dark room and then I'm there's this weird sort of fourth wall and I'm trying to figure out what is this art of saying This got tiresome for me. How do I create lighting design that feels like another world, and or a set and and?

Speaker 3:

So, you know, i went back to the old world, like how do we commune over food, right, sit and feast, and then we go by the fire and I tell you a story, that's sort of the model, and on another, and then it sort of began, you know, expanding because my husband's work, when we had children, he had a nervous breakdown. He thought how am I going to save this planet? and he jumped to sustainable agriculture, thinking this is really where I need to put my mind in, my passion, my work. So what's beautiful about what we do is there's the culinary, the feasting, also the level of of the what do you call it? the regenerative farming, these stewards, that of the land, that are, you know, the ranchers, the vegetable growers, that, whatever it is the wine makers. There's a magic. I think about the food, because it's done in a very, very conscious way that has another level of of what we're doing in the, you know, in the world. So it's a very complex kind of thing we do.

Speaker 2:

You know, Julia, I was going to say, like people, they're seeking out more than just going out to dinner. Right, They want that special, memorable experience. And can you describe one of your JA dance summer fall events, like what makes them so special, Like what could people expect?

Speaker 3:

Okay. So you come and there's free parking, the only problem that you do have to. Well, we rent some nice porta-potties, what do you call them? Honey wagons or something? Honey dippers, honey something, yeah, honey something, something. So, anyhow, you park and you arrive and there's a sort of lower barn area. It's a covered barn. This is actually where I create my dance.

Speaker 3:

Every day leading up to the performances or the events, and around the barn we offer like a nice crisp rosé or a glass of wine, a beer, and then charcuterie, cheese, crackers. You know we have options for all kinds of gluten-free, vegan also. Every kind of person arrives. We have food for them Anyhow. So there's a sort of mingling going on. The dancers are there with us, they often are the bartenders. Like we said, we're all integrated And then it's time to head up the hill.

Speaker 3:

We call it. We go upstairs because there's a walk up the hill. It's probably a five minute walk, and if people don't want to walk, we do shuttle people or there's a tractor where you can sit on the back on a hay ride sort of thing. We pull you up that way. Once you get to the top of the hill, there's a whole kitchen, all these beautiful tables.

Speaker 3:

My husband, who's also was a contractor, built out of redwood trees, big table set for a hundred people And then so we feast up there. There's more wine, more little starters, and then the big sort of family style. The plates come out And you sit with your friends or with others. It's all just sort of integrated And so everyone sort of eats together And then, once the feast sort of wraps up, you grab a cup of sipping chocolate or bone broth as the other, and some people combine them.

Speaker 3:

Whoa, some people say it's incredible. I don't know about that Anyway, and we go. So my husband also built just off to the side is our bleachers in a massive stage that when you sit you look at the whole sunset in the hills. And this is the stage and people sit down, and then I have a new work every year that I premiere And we watch the dance and it's beautiful because you sort of see the hills and then the hills go away and I have some light And I mean it's the best set design ever that I've ever had, and light design.

Speaker 1:

Well, nature, what better set design can a sunset?

Speaker 2:

and stars be Yeah. Be, So, Julian, can you give us a little sneak peek what this year's theme is?

Speaker 3:

Well, so regeneration, because this is another thing, because we're on a farm and because of my husband's work, it's like we try to connect the art to the food, to the whole culinary thing. So there's a whole ethos to what you're doing. We call it Regenerare, which is Latin for regenerate, And so it brings up this idea of the oraboris. I don't know if you know where the snake is eating its own tail. So you have this idea of the old, like the death and the birth, and this sort of constant cycle of life as it relates to biology, to topsoil, to people. It's all gonna be in there. And one of my dancers, who's been with us for the 10 years, who I also met when he was 15 at the San Francisco Valley School it's his retirement, so he's sort of my main figure. It's like how do we sort of say goodbye to the old and welcome the new, and it's so. That's part of it too. Yeah.

Speaker 2:

That's deep Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And amazing And some of the words I just heard you say that the stewards of the land, magic, the flow, relaxation, intentional community these are how people wanna experience things right And I really understand what you're saying. Hurry up and get into the city and get parking and have a quick meal and ask for the check when the food gets set down. Right. It's such the antithesis of that. It's about flow and relaxation and engagement And I love how you talk about the dancers are there at the beginning. They're part of it, right, they're not separate from it. Magical And this Regenerare. I love it. I'm sure I butchered it. I noticed and I read it in episode on sustainability And this theme is really important, like when you said your husband Aaron pivoted his career too when you had children to really focus on this aspect of it. Can you share with us maybe a little bit more about terra firma farms and the kind of significant role it plays in the events? I know it's a special place.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, well, what's funny is when we started we were in a boat house in Inverness And then we moved to the woods in Nicosio And then we moved to Bolinas a bit beautiful farm in Bolinas, on the Mesa. We partner with people And then we've landed in Petaluma at terra firma farms, which is an incredible farm all organic, everything sustained, all big sustainable agriculture ethos about it amazing. So it really felt right for us. Aaron is the managing partner there, so it's like we're really part of the soil now. It's not like we just sort of dip in for our month and dip out. So it's an incredible firm. They have livestock chickens, pigs, cows. The cattle are ours, which is what Aaron's whole business started as, where he's grazing the cows in a rotational way where they're never sort of touching the same land in a year And this helps with the topsoil and the watershed and the grasslands. So it's first and it's the most important is this this kind of restoration, regenerative farming, and then the byproduct is this beautiful grass fed beef made from very happy cows.

Speaker 1:

I love that and truly grass fed truly. I think Cradle to Grave grass fed. I know that these events are a family affair. You've already said that your kids help. It's kind of all hands on deck. What has that experience been like for you Really creating this family affair?

Speaker 3:

Well, it's incredible. I mean I guess you know I maybe again back to that 13 year old who left home. This, you know, it's like it was so important for me to keep my family close to me that we've created something that every year really pulls us together. You know, zoe does dance in the show. Alexander is everywhere. I mean he's been from the beginning. The welcome committee to you know, whatever weed whacking and pull, and you know power washing and also my dramatur. I mean he's, you know, and Zoe too, with the social media And like it's like it's this whole thing. And then Aaron, you know the whole. He built the whole thing for me.

Speaker 1:

Right.

Speaker 3:

So, boy, did I marry right.

Speaker 1:

I'm like.

Speaker 3:

I need a stage up on a hill that looks, you know, and that we can, you know, combine both of our passions together, because the food part and the ag part is so important And that has become. You know, it's been hard for Aaron because he's sort of off, you know, slaying the dragons, and he feels like he hasn't been around the kids a ton. But when our children talk about, when they shop for food, or climate change, or you know, it's really penetrated their cells. And so I'm, you know, so grateful that Aaron took that journey because it's really informed us as a family too. And then, lucky me that I get to do my art like that, even though it's killer. I mean, i'm telling you to employ, i'm, seven dancers for four weeks and how's women, you know it's, it's a big deal, but it's well worth it, yeah.

Speaker 1:

And we're definitely going to put the dates in our show notes as well as a link for people if they'd like to attend the events there for two weekends in July, the dates And I know you do something else in the fall, So we'll make sure that people have a way Julia to experience, And I'm going this year. I'm over the moon.

Speaker 2:

Yes, i, you know. I just love that you have carved out this such a unique career, and you've truly taken your lifelong passions and morph them in as you grown, at each stage of your life, right. So you've blazed your own unique trial, and I want other women who listen to this to get inspired to create the life that they want. So what about midlife? What's the next step for you at midlife, julia? What's next?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, well, i think that I want to expand this. You know it's funny, it's called Julia Adam Dance. Right, is the J-A-D. Then we added experience on the end because it Julia Adam Dance initially sounded right. But how do you so? then we thought, is it Julia and Erin's dream? That was another. You know so. But when I you know, as we age, you know I do notice I have less energy, and but what I do know is if you hold an idea, and it's like every day, you just do one foot in front of the other that this is.

Speaker 3:

This creates the world you want and design it in a way that you see fit for you. It's, i think, it's important. You know my ambition and my competitive nature sort of belong me into it. But I do reevaluate at this age What do I really want my life to look like? And I really do like working for myself. I found that it's. It's you know, and well, you know it has issues, obviously, but but in the end you know that you get to sort of make the calls and design. It is, i think, important for women at our age.

Speaker 3:

Right, It's like. It's like now or never. Really, Let's do that.

Speaker 2:

Exactly, absolutely. So, in this whole process, what do you feel has been your biggest challenge and how have you overcome that?

Speaker 3:

Hmm, Well, i think the biggest challenge is is not being afraid that it's not going to work. Yeah, again, you know, it's really that. You know, one foot in front of the other, just keep sort of at your own pace, That's. Another thing is that I do feel the push of the world. You know you're late on this, you're late on that and you're not. Your social media sucks, and you're, you know. It's just like there's so much clutter.

Speaker 3:

So you sort of move the clutter away and again just kind of keep pulling that pulling the cart.

Speaker 1:

The rock up the hill, the rock, or pulling the cart.

Speaker 2:

I think Ellen and I can absolutely relate to that. Just in our doing our podcast, it's like it's not a perfect journey, but it's our journey And that's one foot ahead each day.

Speaker 1:

Yes, And having some grace when things don't go exactly right, because nothing is really a linear, linear process, right? And so I think having that grace at midlife is something we're much more able to give ourselves, as, as we do this, julia, we ask everyone what is their superpower? Do you have one at the ready for us?

Speaker 3:

Oh, my superpower, I think my superpower is humor. I do too. No, You know what? because my mother said it to me years ago. She said, boy, if you didn't have the sense of humor you have, you wouldn't be doing like that. I can laugh at things, laugh at myself, laugh at my mistakes. You know, forgive myself through some kind of humor keeps me on track, I think.

Speaker 2:

Now. Now, julia, before I let you go, i wanted to ask you about this viral dancer. This is a dance routine where you were recently involved in and I even heard about it here. You know, on the East Coast, something about volleyball moms, and Ellen, the professed she can't dance, has even participated, and is there a video that we're going to be able to share this?

Speaker 3:

There is a video, isn't there?

Speaker 1:

There is a video, but I'm I'm kind of off to the side.

Speaker 3:

I'm so humiliating, but it was, you know. Here's the thing. It was born out of the competitive nature. When last year Ellen and I watched the last year seniors sort of present to their sons, you know a goodbye. I'm like you know what I can do some better than this.

Speaker 1:

I can make a dance And we can do dance. Julia, We can do that. We even got some of the dads to participate and the three freshman boys on the team got a little hazing with the dance, so I will definitely find the video. We can post it to our socials and Julia.

Speaker 3:

Thank you.

Speaker 1:

Oh no, i was just going to say thank you so much for joining us today. We are so excited to experience Julia Adam dance experience this summer at Terra Ferma Farms in Petaluma And we'll make sure that all our listeners know how they can join us there as well. And just a big thank you from us.

Speaker 3:

Thank you to you, Ellen and Tish. Thank you for having me on and congratulations on your podcast.

Speaker 1:

Thank you.

Speaker 2:

All right.

Speaker 1:

Okay, till next week, midlifers.

Speaker 2:

Till next week. Till next week.

Long-Term Dance Career
From Skating to Ballet
(Cont.) From Skating to Ballet
Ballet, Competition, and Motherhood
Integrating Ballet With Culinary Arts
Creating a Family Affair