We had the good fortune of connecting with Ruth McCleskey and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ruth, do you have a favorite quote or affirmation?
“You can’t lose what you never had.” ~ Rachel Mason. If you are not making a living off your art, you are not a failure. You are still an artist and have value. Choosing your own artistic path is a good thing and if it feeds your soul, that’s even better.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Boiling Point Players came out of Autumn Clack and Ruth McCleskey’s improv duo Ophelia’s Rope. It laid the groundwork for BPP and developed an already existing synergy between us to the point where, when it came to art, we could always say yes to each other, jump off of any cliff, and figure it out on the way down. It is never easy but it makes it fun. Something we learned along the way that we really embraced is that anytime you put art out for consumption, you are risking rejection. It might not be something that hits with the audience. It doesn’t mean that it is not good, but you might not have the right audience for it. This makes the process of making the art very important. You should enjoy and grow from it, that way if the work is rejected you still get something out of it. This has rolled over into other aspects of our lives making it just as important when it comes to how we learn things, interact with people, and do our jobs. The result is not always the most important thing.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’d tell them to pick up some to go food and settle in to see all the art being created online! Mildred’s Umbrella, Cone Man Running, Pronoia Theater and so many others (including us) are finding ways to create art safely. Is it what we are used to? No. Are we having fun creating? Absolutely.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are so many people!! We don’t think people realize how supportive the artistic community is of each other. Even though there’s competition – for jobs, resources, spaces, audiences – there’s still a sense that there’s a place for all of us within the community and that a rising tide lifts all boats. If we had to pick one group to dedicate our shout out to it would be Cone Man Running Productions. They have always been very supportive and we have a lot of back and forth of helping and inspiring each other.