On the Couch with Ruby Duncan

Ruby-Duncan-AAR-On-the-CouchWho is Ruby Duncan?
Me! Ruby Duncan. I am an actor/producer/writer/dramaturge or a ‘slashy’ (more sophisticated term might be: multi-disciplinary), and live and work on the unceded lands of the Wurundjeri people

What would you do differently from what you do now?
Everything? Being in the arts forces you to constantly evaluate your choices, I feel. One of the advantages of working in such a transient field, is that you always have opportunities to pivot and try again. On a spiritual level, I think I would show myself some more compassion in terms of doing things differently. On a literal level, I have a limited skillset, so I reckon it would still be something arts adjacent. But I’m always open to new things.

Who inspires you and why?
Anyone who has the courage to pursue what they love, in defiance of the status quo, inspires me so much. Non-traditional approaches to life get me excited. And my friends. They are pretty brilliant.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
So, so many practical and impractical things. But I picked story-telling as my contribution. I’m passionate about art being more accessible, especially theatre, and I wish it was prioritised more. I would love to see it championed as a worthy, viable career for anyone and everyone.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
NYC, for inspiration, creativity, and fun. Or down the beach, either along the coast here in Victoria with my family, or up to Northern NSW to visit one of my best friends. For peace, connection, nature and relaxation.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
Depends what they are into! I love thrifting, so I would probably go down to Collingwood/Fitzroy and take them to spots along Smith Street/Johnston Street. Maybe Alimentari for a pastry. I love Readings in Carlton, or Cinema Nova, otherwise, I live in a pretty good area for food/drinks, and then if we had nothing but time and a car, places dotted along the Mornington Peninsula. You learn quickly I am no good at picking one thing!

What are you currently reading?
Dress Rehearsals by Madison Godfrey, which is a brilliant memoir made of poetry, and My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh (of which I am very late to the party), are two I currently have on the go.

What are you currently listening to?
Sentimental and the City from the Sentimental Garbage podcast for perhaps the tenth time. It’s my comfort listen. It’s two writers, Dolly Alderton and Caroline O’Donoghue, dissecting the seasons of Sex and The City, and I love it. Those who get it, get it.

Happiness is?
Being in alignment. Simple pleasures. A good community.

What does the future hold for you?
I don’t know! I trust it will work out, though. I have spent so much time obsessing over the future, I’m all about letting it go. Whatever it is, I hope it’s still filled with people and things I love.

Ruby is the Co-creator of, and Performer in The Astonishing Comet Boombox – which will be presented at the Bluestone Church Arts Space, Footscray from 17 – 21 October, as part of the 2023 Melbourne Fringe Festival. For more information, visit: www.melbournefringe.com.au for details.

Image: Ruby Duncan (supplied)