Professional ballet dancer John Lam has a daily juggling act balance his career, marriage and family. A child of Vietnam immigrants, as Lam grew older he realized that being public about his life was the best way of showing people that when it comes to family, we are all the same. He took a moment to talk with PRIDE & Equality about his goals.
You have the cutest boys! Was family always in the plan or was career your focus?
Kids was always in the plan of creating our family, but we didn’t think it would go so smoothly via IVF and was blessed with such a smooth experience going through the process twice.
Being a professional dancer has and is my bread and butter of who I am as a human being. I think that while I was in my young twenties and seeing older dancers have kids to create a family, gave me the assurance that this was something that I wanted to do in the future as I grew up with an amazing childhood in my eyes, and having siblings and many cousins was apart of my teenage growing phase. Having the opportunity to create a family that is ours through IVF was and is still an incredible and huge task to take. I am so grateful for our two boys which helps me deepen my artistry in roles I take on.
Where did your inspiration for dance come from?
I think my inspiration for dance was how I listened to the music, and how my body would just react to what the music was playing. I remember as a small little child that I would listen to these epic tracks of classical music that I had really no clue what they were, but creating dances in my mind and just letting my spirit be. I would dance in my elementary classrooms and middle school years, not know what I was doing, and not caring what others would think, dancing for me was and is like a sacred drug that I have to take in order to feel zen.
Where has dance taken you?
Dance has taken me to many places and have experienced so much. While the clock is ticking, I’ve been very lucky to travel and dance iconic ballet roles that has given me much fulfillment as an artist. I grew up in the projects of San Rafael CA, with no artistic background from my family, and somehow dance found me, and I took a chance and went with it. Landing full ride scholarships to schools, and then being offered my first contract with Boston Ballet prior to graduating high school. I hold now a Principal Dancer contract with Boston Ballet and have been with the company for 17 years. Its half of my life so far, and I have learned to be loyal and trust the process of being a dancer. Its been tough, it is tough, sustaining on a high level, and continuing to inspire oneself is tough. But so far I have made dance be and allowed it to grow.
How did you and John meet?
I met John R. my future husband, in the South End in Boston, walking across a crosswalk dropping my laundry while he stopped and let me pass. Sitting outside waiting for my laundry to be dried, he drove up, pulled over, and sat next to me and introduced himself. He had balls to just come up and say hi, but the rest is history. 9 years and counting, married and creating a family, I am and will forever be grateful for John R taking a chance with me.
Many would keep their personal life to themselves. Why is it important for the public to see the dynamic of your family?
I think that it is important if one has the cache and ability to share their makeup of their lives if one is willing to share. I wish that I had a couple that was so different in age, culture, profession, but able to come together and create a life together, would have been inspiring as a teen to look up too. I hope that by sharing and giving a transparent idea of what our family is made up of, it will allow others to see and have a perspective of what is possible and what love is. I think sharing our stories, allows others to look at themselves and see what inspires them to take the plunge in creating a family, or go on a date, and or know that there are married couples out there.
What does the future hold for you both personally and professionally?
An epic question, which I cannot foresee the future. Thankfully, I have an incredible husband, that is my teammate, and two kids to care for at the same time, gives me to the chance to figure what the next steps can be. Personally, I am hoping that I just am the best father to my kids and loving and caring husband. Professionally, I know that I can’t dance forever, so enjoying every moment on stage and keeping an open heart to what the possibilities can be in the future.
Follow John on social media @johndilam and @Ruggierilamfamily.
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