Cheryl Livingstone speaks to Ruby Wax about her new show, which is an exploration into everyone’s minds
I don’t understand how someone wouldn’t be interested in it,” Ruby Wax told me after I asked why she was interested in the topic of mindfulness.
“It determines how you pick up the phone, it’s how you dial the phone, everything comes from the mind, so I think it’s about time somebody explained this is why it works this way, but if you are funny then it is easier to swallow.”
Explaining how the mind works is the basis of Ruby’s new show, Sane New World, which is based on her No. 1 bestselling book, Sane New World: Taming the Mind, which has enjoyed worldwide success since publication in 2013.
Using her signature humour, Ruby gives a tour of the brain and how to tame it.
“We know so much about how the world works, but so little about how our own minds work. It’s like having a Ferrari on top of your head, but no one gave you the keys.
“So my show is about how your mind works and what to do about it, especially in this culture: it’s a survival kit for the 21st century. Bill Bryson writes about real subjects and then he spins it into comedy, so that is sort of what I’m doing.”
It is a subject that Ruby is well versed in now, having just completed a masters degree in mindfulness-based cognitive therapy at Oxford University. It was a subject, however, that she has always been interested in.
She said: “I started off studying it a little bit. Now you can look in a live one and see what people are thinking, so then I decided I was really interested and I went to Oxford. I said I would study it anyway, but I got in, so of course I got more interested.
“I just like that everything comes from this and it makes you do everything you do. When I was young, everybody wanted to know what the meaning of life was and these questions that have always been asked only come from how your brain works. You can’t look at the stars and figure it out; you can only look at why you are the way you are, where did it start and what was the point of it.
“In the show, I am doing anything for comedy, so talking about things like how to tell how insane someone is by how they have designed their bathroom. So I explain why things happen and the history of it, and it’s fun.”
While she admits that she has stolen some of the material from the book, she promises those who have read it that there is more on offer. It is a whole different thing, she tells me.
And one section sure to be different every night is the second half, which is made up of a question and answer session with the audience. Fans will get to quiz Ruby and ask her questions about her own life. It’s a part that Ruby says makes every show different from the next and a part she really looks forward to.
“Come along if you dare,” she joked.
will be at the Aberdeen Music Hall this Saturday, May 9, from 8pm. Tickets cost £20.35 and are available from www.aberdeenperformingarts.com